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Myrtle rust

Myrtle Rust

Myrtle Rust

Myrtle rust is a fungal disease caused by Uredo rangelii or Puccinia psidii. The Myrtle Rust National Management Group has concluded that it is not possible to eradicate myrtle rust from Australia. The disease will continue to infect susceptible plants in the city due to the large amount of spores spread by the wind.

The ability of susceptible plants to overcome the disease varies. The City treats all plants infected with myrtle rust on City land in line with the Management of trees on Council controlled land policy. The City makes every effort to preserve and protect existing trees within road reserves and parks.  In some cases tree removal is the appropriate option.

If you have any questions about the health of plants on City land that are infected with myrtle rust please contact us on 07 5667 5974.

Biosecurity Queensland is leading the Queensland Government’s response to the disease. If you suspect that you have Myrtle rust please notify Biosecurity Queensland on 13 25 23.

Tips to reduce Myrtle rust impact:

  • Always buy healthy plants – inspect the foliage and stems before you buy. Never buy plants that look sick.
  • Buy certified mulch that has been composted to Australian standards.
  • Always clean equipment after pruning each myrtaceous plant. Scrape or brush off excess dirt, then wash in detergent and let dry.
  • Wash clothes that have been in contact with potentially diseased material to avoid transferring myrtle rust spores between gardens, bushland, parks and nurseries.
  • Regularly check myrtaceous plants in or near your garden.
  • Avoid watering in the afternoon. Wet plants are more prone to fungal attack.
  • Seek advice on mineral nutrition and soil condition. Healthy plants can reduce fungal attack.
  • Remove and dispose of diseased plants or plant parts by putting them in a bag and placing in the general waste bin, not into the green waste bin.
  • Do not compost diseased plants as spores may survive and re-infect plants.

City of Gold Coast acknowledges the assistance of the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries in preparing this information.

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