DOC Recommendation to remove Chilean myrtle (Luma apiculata) from sale due to its weed potential

05 Mar 2024

DOC (Department of Conservation) has identified Chilean Myrtle (Luma apiculata) as an emerging pest plant and have requested a voluntary approach to remove it from sale. 

Chilean myrtle (Luma apiculata) from the Myrtaceae family, is a hardy, evergreen tree with distinctive orange bark, native to Chile and Argentina. 

Invasive populations have been found in New Zealand native bush, primarily in the Tasman area. But wild seedlings have also been found across Aotearoa. Looking internationally, this tree species has naturalised in several areas outside of its native range including Great Britain, Ireland and the United States.

The National Pest Plant Accord (NPPA) is under revision and this species is likely to be included in the revised list, which is expected in 2026. In the meantime, DOC is recommending that businesses voluntarily discontinue propagation and sale of this species due to its emerging weed potential. 

If you have any questions or would like to discuss this further, please contact NZPPI Biosecurity & Technical Manager, Kathryn Hurr



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