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May 15th Update - 2020 Wild Parsnip Program

This memo is to inform you that the 2020 Wild Parsnip Program will start on May 19, 2020, weather permitting. Similar to years past, the goal is to reduce the growth of wild parsnip in areas that are highly infested while ensuring that environmentally sensitive areas and public safety are not adversely impacted. In total, Council has approved $198,000 for this year’s strategy.

The 2020 Strategy consists of the following:

· Continue and expand Clearview herbicide application to highly infested areas

· Continue with mowing, adjusting frequency and timing to best coincide with herbicide applications

· Re-map infestation levels

· Continue the communication and awareness campaign in collaboration with partners in Ottawa Public Health (OPH), Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP), National Capital Commission (NCC), etc.

Approximately 1,200 lane km of roadsides/pathways and over 150 locations of parkland will be treated this year. Roadside cutting is currently underway and additional herbicide application may be considered again for the fall season.

In order to notify the public of the herbicide application, staff has received from the MECP the approval for alternative notification where spraying is being conducted. Rather than placing signs every 100 m along roadside spraying locations, an MECP-approved “Notice of Herbicide Use” advertisement will appear in local newspapers on May 16th, 2020. However, given the large number of public access points for parks, signs will continue to be posted every 100 m.

Similar to last year, rural residents who do not wish to have the roadside adjacent to their property sprayed have been given the option to opt-out of the Wild Parsnip program. Should a resident opt out of the program, it will become their responsibility to manage any Wild Parsnip infestation adjacent to their property, as required by the Weed Control Act, 1990. Information has been shared on how to opt-out as part of the communications to residents on our website and in print materials. For additional information on wild parsnip, please consult the City of Ottawa’s website.


©2019 by Jan Harder.