Popular free pest plant workshops back

12 Jul 2016, 2:11 PM

Free tips on how to tackle some of Northland’s worst pest plant pests will be on offer later this month at a series of workshops in Kaipara, the Far North and Whangarei.

Pest plant specialist Sara Brill says Dargaville, Kerikeri, Coopers Beach and Whangarei will host this year’s 25-30 July workshops, each of which runs for about three hours.

“It’s the sixth year council has run them and we usually hold two per day at each venue; one from 9am until noon, the other 1pm to 4pm.  The venues are chosen based on demand from local communities and can vary from year to year.”

Up to 200 people typically take advantage of the popular workshops annually, learning how to better manage land and freshwater-based weeds, either on their own land, or properties they manage for others.

Ms Brill says the workshops are hands-on but delivered in a relaxed way, covering more than 20 ‘nasties’ including wild ginger, lantana and moth plant, as well as highlighting the need to report freshwater weeds like water hyacinth and salvinia.

The events include a short presentation, hands-on identification tips and information on control options, including chemicals and other methods.

The first workshop will take place in Dargaville at the Kaipara District Council’s conference room (Hokianga Rd) on Monday 25 July, followed the next day in Kerikeri at the St John Ambulance Hall (357 Kerikeri Rd) before moving to the St John Ambulance Hall (7 St John Rd) at Coopers Beach on Wednesday 27 July.

Friday 29 July will see workshops in the council chambers at the regional council’s Water St, Whangarei offices.  There’ll also a final 9am to noon workshop in Whangarei on Saturday 30 July for those unable to make any of the earlier events.

Ms Brill says each workshop is limited to about 30 people so registration is essential.  Those keen to attend can contact her on (09) 470 1162 or freephone (0800) 002 004 to register.

Ms Brill says the mid-winter workshops are a great chance to plan ahead and prepare for the busy ‘weed knockdown period’ once the warm spring growth phase starts.

General information on pests in Northland is available from the regional council’s website via: www.nrc.govt.nz/nasties