Two discoveries of myrtle rust were made in Auckland in November, on ramarama plants at a private property in St Lukes and on a commercial plant production property in the Waimauku area of west Auckland.
Myrtle rust is a fungus that attacks and can potentially seriously affect myrtle species plants including some significant natives such as pōhutukawa, ramarama, mānuka and rātā. MPI myrtle rust response controller Dr Catherine Duthie says of the 136 North Island locations now known to be infected, 90 per cent involve infection in ramarama or pōhutukawa plants. MPI is considering the implications of the new find.
Any signs of the distinctive yellow fungus should be reported to MPI on 0800 80 99 66. mpi.govt.nz/myrtlerust