Watch Out: Brazilian Pepper Tree

Residents of Otūmoetai and Mount Maunganui, please be on the lookout for the Brazilian pepper tree. 

Recently a number of Brazilian pepper trees were found on the border of Fergusson Park in Matua. It is suspected that there may be more in the area and we need residents to keep an eye out and report any that they see. Trees have now also been found growing near Hibiscus Reserve in Mount Maunganui.

Brazilian pepper tree (otherwise known as the Christmas Berry) is an evergreen bushy tree that grows 3 – 7m tall with dense and intertwining branches. It is a toxic plant that is highly invasive and smells like turpentine when crushed – although please don’t crush it without gloves on.

It is currently in flower (white) but will soon start fruiting and we are keen to try and locate any other plants before the red berries ripen and are spread by birds.