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Legionella bacteria takes root in Ipswich's Free Plant Program.

There are fears thousands of plants distributed to residents by Ipswich City Council through its Free Plant Program, could contain harmful levels of the potentially deadly Legionella bacteria.

Concerns were raised after two Council's employees, responsible for potting the plants, tested positive to Legionella in June.

Those who are exposed to the bacteria may not become unwell or they may have a mild, short-lived illness, and those who become seriously unwell are usually over 50, or have risk factors including cigarette smoking or a weak immune system.

(Image courtesy of www.qt.com.au)