Tree vigilante saving native seeds
A central Auckland man has taken it upon himself to save young, self-seeding native plants from council weed spraying.
Tom Lusk, a secondary school English teacher, has been replanting native seedlings away from a council designated spray zone, which runs along a motorway side berm of the north western cycleway.
‘‘I’m taking self-seeded seedling from where they would get destroyed, and I’m planting them over to the other side in the garden to grow up.
The seedlings would otherwise be sprayed because they were encroaching onto the bike path, Lusk said.
The native flora included totara, rengarenga, puriri, kohuhu and pittosporum; with karamu, karo and cabbage trees being the most common transplants. Lusk estimated he had saved 40 plants over the past 5 years.
He said he acknowledged the council had to keep the cycle path clear, and he didn’t want to tread on anyone’s toes.
‘‘They need to keep maintaining it. It’s such a great bike path, and it’s so important that people have visibility along it.’’
He said he was also concerned about the amount of yard waste which had been dumped along the cycle path, saying it contributed to weeds like privet taking over.
Kingsland resident Tom Lusk showing off a young Totara sapling he has saved from Auckland Council weed spraying.