“Invasive grass recalled”
An extremely invasive "landscape grass" has been inadvertently sold in the Auckland Region as "Poa Species" and is urgently being recalled by the Auckland Regional Council and the garden centres involved.
This "Poa" is actually "fine stem needle grass" or nassella tenuissima, sometimes referred to as stipa species and looks very similar to some native Poas.
Fine stem needle grass is closely related to the infamous nassella tussock that has cost farmers and government millions of dollars over 40 or more years to bring under control in Northland and several South Island regions. These grasses are extremely invasive and produce prolific amounts of wind borne seed.
If you have purchased a "poa species" during the past three months and it is beginning to form purplish seeds with long thin hair like ends, please contact the Auckland Regional Council Enviroline on 366-2070 or any branch of Kings Plant Barn and they will organise an Auckland Regional Council biosecurity officer to visit and confirm the species for you.
The Auckland Regional Council asks that gardeners not remove the plants but to place large plastic bags over them to prevent seed dispersal. The officer will remove the plant for you and ensure the seed is incinerated. Kings Plant Barn have offered to replace every fine stem needle grass plant with two native grasses.
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For further information please call:
Rod Smart, ARC biosecurity officer, on 09 832 6880 or 021 222 9061;
Chris Hall, Kings Plant Barn) 09 410 9726 or 025 939 094