Matthew Backhouse

Matthew Backhouse is a NZME. News Service journalist based in Auckland.

Banned: Thirteen 'invasive' plants (+photos)

Cestrum Aurantiacum, or Orange Cestrum, is one of 13 plants banned in New Zealand after being listed as invasive species. Photo / Supplied
Cestrum Aurantiacum, or Orange Cestrum, is one of 13 plants banned in New Zealand after being listed as invasive species. Photo / Supplied

Thirteen plants have been banned in New Zealand after they were listed as invasive species.

Their names range from the banal to the bizarre - including "monkey's comb'', "bat-wing passion flower'' and "running postman''.

It is now illegal under the Biosecurity Act to propagate, distribute or sell the newly banned plants - either casually or through nurseries - but existing plants are still allowed on private properties.

The species are listed under the National Plant Pest Accord, which was established in 2001 to help stop the spread of species that threaten existing New Zealand plants.

Parties to the accord include the Ministry for Primary Industries, the Department of Conservation, regional councils and the Nursery and Garden Industry Association.

Plants of concern are identified by the parties, members of the public and a technical advisory group.

They are banned only after consideration by technical specialists, discussions between accord members and public consultation.

The newly banned species are:
* Asparagus plumosus (asparagus fern)
* Carex pendula (drooping sedge, or Otahuna sedge)
* Cestrum aurantiacum (orange cestrum)
* Cestrum elegans (red cestrum)
* Cestrum fasciculatum (red cestrum, or early jessamine)
* Cestrum nocturnum (queen of the night)
* Clerodendrum trichotomum (clerodendrum)
* Juglans ailantifolia (Japanese walnut)
* Kennedia rubicunda (dusky coral pea, coral pea, or running postman)
* Maytenus boaria (Chilean mayten, mayten, or maiten)
* Passiflora apetala (bat-wing passion flower)
* Pithecoctenium crucigerum (monkey's comb, or monkey's hairbrush)
* Polypodium vulgare (polypody, common polypody)

- APNZ

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