Spring gardeners are being warned to take care while handling potting mix and compost following the death of a Dunedin man.
The man developed flu-like symptoms and was admitted to hospital where he died within a week of symptoms appearing.
It's understood the man was infected by legionella bacteria while adding compost to a glasshouse.
Southern District Health Board said Legionnaires' disease was a type of pneumonia caused by the bacteria.
The DHB said early symptoms could appear two days after exposure and similar to the flu.
The disease can cause a cough, high fever, muscle pains and headaches.
Anyone handling potting mix, soils or compost, should wear gloves, a good quality mask that covers the nose and mouth, and work in a well ventilated space.