Seedlings of Nelson’s critically endangered coastal peppercress are being grown in Dunedin in an innovative approach to safeguard the species from extinction.
Seeds were sown by staff at the Dunedin Botanic Garden's high-tech propagation facility, in December 2015. The plants grew well and are now located outdoors in the main native garden.
Dunedin Botanic Garden staff and other expert Dunedin growers have found these vulnerable plants are still subject to heavy aphid and white butterfly caterpillar attack, despite the cooler climate, but they have managed to set seed without pest control. Dunedin growers are concentrating on maximising seed for minimal effort. While Nelson growers are producing seed by combating the insect pests. DOC is spreading handfuls of seeds at suitable sites around Nelson’s coast.