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Imprisonment for plant stealing?

GardenDrum

GardenDrum

December 30, 2012

Did you know that it’s a crime in NSW to steal a plant? The Crimes Act 1900 NSW No. 40 says : “513 Stealing shrubs etc ¬†Whosoever steals, or destroys, or damages with intent to steal, the whole, or any part, of any tree, sapling, shrub, or plant, or any underwood shall, on conviction by the Local Court, be liable to imprisonment for six months, or to pay a fine of 5 penalty units, or both.” What do you think about that?

I’m not sure what I think. To be liable for 6 months imprisonment for stealing any part of a plant (ha! beware all seed stealers!!) seems quite Dickensian. Even our Australian convict forebears didn’t get transported for something quite so trivial. But then again, when I think about the cruel and wanton destruction of a whole avenue of young trees as happened in Cowra outside the Japanese memorial garden…….

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grim
grim
10 years ago

I say send em to the gallows, well not really but it does get under my skin.
I am a Head Gardener in a council in Adelaide South Aust.
We will plant a street full of trees we even cable some to the ground and low and behold some half wit will come allong and snap a $200 tree in half.
People wonder why our rates allways seem to be going up.
We planted some Lemon trees and assorted herbs in one park so that people can pick some for their BBQs ,lasted one month ,they tried to get the Lemon once couldnt get it because it was cabled to the ground.
Said moron came back another night with cutters GONE.

Catherine Stewart
Admin
10 years ago
Reply to  grim

What a shocking story! I can see why you’d despair. I’ve seen a similar story in my sister’s kids’ school where we planted lots of small tubestock natives. They lasted until they were growing well and really filling out, and then they were gone. We need data dot technology and tracking devices!

Clare Betts
Clare Betts
10 years ago

Yes, I agree with the NSW Government legislation of 1900 re plant theft prosecution.
I am shocked to read of this theft in Cowra having visited those magnificient gardens recently!
In my various horticultural work modes, I have heard too many sad stories of people in corporate and private situations who have had plants and trees dug up and even turf rolled up and removed overnight (often, it seems, by back-yard unqualified landscapers looking for a quick dollar!)
However, I often do suggest people write a note to a homeowner to request a desirable cutting or plant division for their garden – I have always been lucky with my responses to date!

Catherine Stewart
Admin
10 years ago
Reply to  Clare Betts

Turf rolled up and removed? Goodness – I remember seeing that happen in the movie ‘Fun with Dick and Jane’ but there it was being repossessed! I wonder if this sort of plant theft was common in the past, or if it’s a more recent phenomenon.

grim
grim
10 years ago

First off Catherine i love the way that you give us drummers a response its great.
OK, now this stuff has been going on for the time i have been at the council, its not getting better .
These low lifes (i am having a quess here) will drive past a work site and see that we are planting out, the next few days (may i say not all the time) there gone.
I just hope that they are a “landscaper” that has put said plants in the ground and within the time of there so called “guarantee” those little fellows turn their heads up and they have to fork out for some new ones.
Sadly i think they will just steal from another site.
Well that feels good .think i might go and play my guitar now.
Cheers Grim.