Important Information for Clubs and Greenkeepers
April 14, 2020

Maintenance and care of turf and nursery plants

Background

From Tuesday 14th April urgent maintenance of turf and care for plants in nurseries will be permitted under Alert Level 4 restrictions.

Maintenance providers should adhere to the following guidance. In doing so, operators and owners will need to form a judgment as to: (1) how best to apply this guidance to their particular circumstance; and, (2) which of their maintenance activities are genuinely urgent. We expect operators to minimise maintenance during Alert Level 4.

Definitions

This guidance relates to:

  • Golf Courses – public and private courses
  • Bowling greens and croquet greens – both public and private greens
  • Turf at facilities which hold national events and external/supplementary supply chain facilities required for the maintenance of that turf, and artificial turf facilities.
  • Nurseries – all nurseries [1] including floral suppliers and bulb growers and nurseries supplying gardens

[1] noting that MPI has separate guidance for plantation nurseries

Principles

Urgent maintenance of biological assets must be undertaken in a manner that:

  • minimises, or eliminates if possible, physical interactions among staff
  • ensures appropriate health, hygiene and safety measures are in place
  • restricts activity to only what is essential during the Alert Level 4 period.

Practices

The following practice criteria provide guidance for those involved in the upkeep and maintenance of biological assets. Business should:

Activity that is not permitted

  • activity that is not related to urgent maintenance of key assets (i.e. care of ornamental assets, building maintenance that does not relate to an immediate health and safety issue)
  • any commercial activity
  • gatherings of people that are not usually involved in day-to-day maintenance to assist with essential maintenance of grounds or facilities (i.e. clubs must not organise volunteer working bees)
  • turf maintenance is limited to major sports grounds as outlined above. Maintenance of school sports fields, recreational grounds not used for national events, fields used for casual recreational activity, sports club fields that do not host national events, or general use green spaces is not permitted (with the exception of hazard management, which is permitted under other Alert Level 4 rules and urgent maintenance of artificial turf).
  • maintenance of driving ranges and mini-golf facilities

Enforcement

New Zealanders are relying on each other to keep everyone safe and stop the spread of COVID-19. If operators are too generous in their interpretation of what is essential or flout these rules, Government will take further action.

Further Information

For the most up-to-date information about both the spread of the virus and measures you can take to keep yourself safe please go to the health.govt.nz website(external link)