If you've been down to the Brisbane Marina lately for a stroll along the walkway, you may have noticed that some of the shrubs aren't as full and lush as they once were. This is due to the multi-trunk shrubs and trees, Myoporums, having become infested with Klambothrips Myopori, or thrip, a pest native to Australia.
The thrips, being less than 1/20 inch long, have been causing considerable leaf deformation on the plant species, resulting in the Myoporum's leaves turning brown and becoming curled, as shown in the photo below of one of the younger Myoporum shrubs:
Numerous control methods have been used to stop the thrips from continuing to puncture their host and sucking out its cell contents, but none of the methods resulted in a reduced number of the pest. Therefore, a three-phase project is starting this week to remove the Myoporum trees and shrubs, and replace them with plant species suited to the windy, salt air environment which are also bee-friendly and non-invasive to the region. For the remainder of this year, only Phase 1 will be completed as the project is being completed using fees collected through the Sierra Point Lighting and Landscaping Assessment District. Next year, Phase 2 will be completed, followed by Phase 3 in 2013. As depicted in the illustration below, the shrubs and trees that are to be removed fall along the Marina walkway, between the parking lot and the paved walkway. Contractors will begin at the south end (right side on map) near Dock 1 and continue north and remove the trees near Docks 5 - 6.
The picture below is the parking lot view of the Myoporum that will be removed in the coming few days:
Please exercise caution in the Marina Shared Use Lot over the next few weeks. Parking near the lot's eastern edge will be limited as the project begins. Prior to the replanting taking place, the ground needs to be properly mulched and the existing water irrigation system retrofit to be water-efficient. Thank you for your patience as Phase 1 of this project gets underway!