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Clean, green killer on trial

Clean, green killer on trial

Green MP Ian Ewen-Street is welcoming trials by several local councils of a new organic herbicide.

'Interceptor', the first herbicide in the world to be certified as organic, is being trialled by councils in Auckland, Dunedin and Nelson.

"It's putting nature's own system to work," said Mr Ewen-Street, the Green Party Spokesperson on Agriculture and Organics.

Interceptor's action as one of "relaxing the muscles" surrounding the pores in the leaves of plants, allowing the moisture to evaporate and causing the plant to wilt and die. The pine-extract-based herbicide was discovered by a researcher who noted that little or no grass grew under pine trees.

"It's not a systemic herbicide like conventional ones, but nonetheless seems to be very effective.

"The willingness of these councils to seek organic methods of weed control shows both initiative and environmental responsibility. Other local bodies with an environmental responsibility to their constituents should be trialling organic herbicides. "Assuming successful trials, adoption of this herbicide by local bodies would be a giant step to encouraging the public, from gardeners to farmers, to use such organic sprays," said Mr Ewen-Street.

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