In 2017 the Department of Conservation made available funding for community groups to undertake local weed control. SIRCET was successful in receiving funds and partnered with Environment Southland to deliver the work. The third year of SIRCET weeds control kicked off on 2nd of September 2019. Darwin’s Barberry is the main target but we are also controlling other weeds such as Bomarea, Spanish Heath, Buddleia and Gunnera tinctoria
Originally from South America, this weed was likely introduced to Stewart Island as a good hedging plant. Its rapid growth and prickly leaves make it ideal for this. Plants mature in three to four years and produce many seeds that are dispersed widely by birds. With its ability to grow rapidly, a liking for our weather conditions and being able to thrive in the bush it poses a serious threat to the integrity of our native forest. For more info: https://www.weedbusters.org.nz/weed-information/weed-list/darwins-barberry/
the most effective method to control Darwin’s Barberry is to grid search with a team of people and control every single Barberry plant. Each person carries a GPS so we can track exactly where they walked and mark every plant they control . Every landowner has to be contacted and permission sought to access their land. Any areas left unsearched will potentially result in Barberry plants still being left to spread seeds.
2019 - Ninety Four Hectares are targeted for control, Follow the team’s progress on our new Webmap (Updated weekly)
2018 - Eighty Seven Hectares were grid searched over two months and the team removed 937 adult plants and 10,262 Juvenile plants - See Map
2017: Eighty Hectares were grid searched over two months and the team removed 261 adult barberry, 1760 Juvenile plants and 527 seedlings.- See Map
Follow up to prevent Barberry gaining a hold again will be needed and we ask all landowners to help in this, please remove all Barberry when you see it!