[24 November/ Stuff]

Nine new infestations of the myrtle rust disease have been found in Taranaki during the past two weeks, bringing the total number of infected sites in the region to 82 since the disease was first detected in May. Ministry for Primary Industries Incident Controller, Catherine Duthie said six of the nine new detections were on sites where the disease had been found before and treated, but reinfection had occurred. Ms Duthie explained that consistently warmer temperatures were what the rust needed to develop and release spores, and therefore more rust was expected to develop over the coming months. Ms Duthie added advised people to seek advice from their local garden centre in order to control the myrtle rust.