Bunnings is considering an invitation to visit forestry sites where Tasmanian tree ferns are removed for sale at their outlets, after meeting with an environmental group protesting the practice.
Blue Derby Wild met with Bunnings representatives via Zoom in late-February and have since sent Bunnings an open letter with about 3000 signatures
They also carried out a state-by-state audit of Bunnings websites and outlets, claiming that the tree ferns were only for sale in Tasmania and not on the mainland, but Bunnings confirmed it had not changed its sale policy.
Blue Derby Wild's opposition to the practice centres on the ancient role of native tree ferns in Tasmanian rainforests and its claim that their removal is unnecessary as they often grow in areas with little timber value, and can die once harvested.
Bunnings merchandise general manager Adrian Pearce said they were continuing to consider the invitation from Blue Derby Wild.
"We have met with Blue Derby Wild to understand their concerns and we have received their invitation to visit, which we thank them for, and are currently reviewing that option," he said.
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Bunnings sells the Tasmanian tree ferns - Dicksonia antarctica - to be planted in gardens, and also sliced as stepping stones and as tree fern planter garden features.
While they also grow in Victoria and NSW, Tasmania is believed to be the only state that provides them to Bunnings for sale, largely from the North-East.
The tree ferns can be hundreds of years old and grow between 3.5 and 5 centimetres per year.
Blue Derby Wild co-ordinator Louise Morris visited a coupe in the Mutual Valley on the weekend that was earmarked for logging by Sustainable Timber Tasmania.
She said the tree fern glades in the area had very little timber mix, and their removal was unnecessary.
"You've got 90-90 per cent tree fern glades with park land under them of tree fern carpet and no saw logs, at best a few sassafras," Ms Morris said.
"If tree ferns were exempt from logging, you'd have whole areas of tree fern mixes that would not be logged."
She said they would continue to lobby Bunnings to stop selling the tree ferns, but the company stated the sites that were harvested had prior approval by the Forest Practices Authority.