Exotic garden plants are a ‘ticking time bomb’

Some Exotic garden plants a ‘ticking time bomb’ according to Lincoln University’s professor Philip Hulme. He has been awarded the Hutton Medal for his work on how non-native plants, including garden ornamentals, become invasive weeds in New Zealand.

He says more needs to be done to keep track of introduced species before they spread, stifling native species. Listen to the full interview on Radio NZ at the following link.


If you want more info about which plants are considered weeds you can read The National Pest Plant Accord (NPPA) which is an agreement aimed to stop the sale and/or distribution of the specified pest plants. Both the formal and casual horticultural trade is considered the most significant way of spreading the pest plants in New Zealand. For more info about the specific pest plants that are being targeted there’s a list published at the following link.

Two species of weeds that I regularly notice in Aucklands North Shore gardens and parks are:

Solanum mauritianum. Common name is woolly nightshade

Whoolley Nightshade
and Rhamnus alaternus common names are: rhamnus, evergreen buckthorn

Rhamnus alaternus

So if you’re planning to plant up your garden Weedbusters have published a free “Plant Me Instead” booklet that profiles the environmental weeds of greatest concern in your region. Suggestions are given for alternative locally sold non-weedy species. Here’s a link to the publication.


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