Managing spread

Be a good neighbour and manage the spread of wilding conifers.

If left unmanaged, scattered trees can turn into dense forest and costs of control escalate rapidly. So it pays to control any scattered trees on your place early and remove the seed sources, if possible.

The usual method is to control seedlings and outlying trees first, and work back to the original seed source. Monitoring and ongoing management is needed twice in the following 5-6 years after initial control, as some wilding conifer seeds remain viable for this long.

Some re-infestations are hand weeded, while in other situations ongoing management can be achieved by mob-grazing and fertilising to encourage grasses that compete with wildings. Work with neighbours to control wilding conifers that have spread across property boundaries.

Discourage wilding conifer spread by:

  • selecting carefully which conifer species you plant and where
  • removing wilding conifer saplings that have established outside planted areas, before they develop seed cones

Wilding conifers spreading from a farm shelterbelt

spreading shelterbelt 2

Be a good neighbour

Regional councils' Regional Pest Management Plans may list wilding conifers as pest species, and have rules that require land holders to control these plants. Good neighbour rules may mean it’s the landowner’s responsibility to remove these plants from their property and prevent them from spreading into neighbouring properties.

What if my neighbour isn’t controlling their pest trees?

If the plants are listed as pest plants for your area, contact your regional council for help. Your neighbour may be required to contribute to the removal of wilding conifers from your land.

If the plants aren’t listed as a pest plant for your area, then discuss the problem with your neighbour.

The National Wilding Conifer Control Strategy

What the National Wilding Conifer Control Strategy means for farmers and land holders

Ground control: smaller trees

Ground control methods for scattered seedlings and small trees.

Ground control: larger trees and stands

Ground control of larger trees and dense stands

Aerial control: scattered & dense

Aerial control of scattered seedlings and dense stands.