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City winning the war on weeds

MEDIA RELEASE
7 September 2005


City winning the war on weeds

A ninety eight per cent reduction in chemical spraying and significantly fewer invasive weeds is the result of a four-year blitz on weeds in city parks.

A report highlighting the success of the weed control programme was presented to the Arts, Culture and Recreation Committee today.

“The city plays an important role as a guardian of park areas and it’s wonderful that this programme has achieved significant success,” says Councillor Penny Sefuiva, chairperson of the Arts, Culture and Recreation Committee.

“Auckland’s unique climate allows weeds and plants to grow at significant rates and we can now address this issue effectively,” she says.

The weed control programme is managed by the city’s contractors Te Ngahere Native Forest Management Limited. The success of the programme is measured by the reduction in the amount and variety of invasive weed species, the level of chemical use and the cost per hectare to control the weeds.

There are currently 26 parks in the weed control programme and, as maintenance costs reduce, more parks will be included. The risk of weeds invading parks is largely due to bird and wind seed dispersal and illegal dumping of organic matter.

“This is best practice weed management which sets an example to the rest of the region. We will look to cooperate with other major landowners to achieve similar results,” says Mrs Sefuiva.
The weed control programme is closely linked with the city’s park volunteer programmes and park care groups. Volunteers help with weed removal, planting native trees and shrubs, and the control of pests to promote faster regeneration of natural bush areas.

More information is available at www.aucklandcity.govt.nz/parkvolunteer

ENDS

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