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Free native plants for locals

Media Release

Free native plants for locals

16 October 2015

People can swap garden weeds for native plants at Rotorua’s Kuirau Park Market this weekend, thanks to Bay of Plenty Regional Council.

The council is giving away 300 native plants in exchange for weeds at its Weed Swap stall on Saturday. Council Land Management Officer Steph Bathgate says the Weed Swap has been a popular initiative in the past, with plenty of locals taking up the offer.

“Now the weather is improving people are out and about in their gardens, which gives them a great opportunity to pull up weeds for us to identify. We can advise on how to stop them from growing back”.

A weed is any plant that can restrict or stop native plants from establishing and growing. This impacts native birds and invertebrates as their food sources and habitats become scarce.

“Weeds can appear unexpectedly in your garden as seeds can be dispersed by wind, birds, or grow over from neighbouring boundaries,” Steph says.

“Spring is the perfect time to get to know your backyard and what is growing in it.”

A range of native plants will be available at the Weed Swap stall, including grasses, shrubs and trees. Regional Council staff will be at the Kuirau Park market from 8am-1pm on Saturday, or until all the native plants are swapped.

Weeds should be contained in bags, such as a black household rubbish bag, to make them easier to dispose of.


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