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Invasive Non-Native Plants

To make a complaint about Invasive Non-Native Plants use this online form

Invasive non-native plants (such as Japanese knotweed, Himalayan balsam and giant hogweed) are those which have been introduced to areas outside of their normal range by humans.

Such plants can cause problems by posing a risk to our native biodiversity, by posing a risk to health or by causing structural damage to property.

The Council can investigate areas where invasive non-native plants have become established although a remedy can only be sought in very specific circumstances as the appropriate legislation (Anti-Social Behaviour (Crime and Policing) Act 2014) is concerned with the behaviour of the landowner rather than the presence of the plant.

In order for environmental protection services to consider taking action the following criteria must be met. The landowner's behaviour has to:-

  • Have a detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the locality.
  • Be of a persistent or continuing nature.
  • Be unreasonable.

As such, action will only be considered in circumstances where an invasive non-native plant has become established, where it could reasonably cause alarm or distress, where it threatens to spread from a landowners property and where no action is being taken to control it. 

It is not illegal in itself for invasive non-native plants to grow on a property although it is illegal to plant or spread them in the wild.

Some invasive non-native plants (such as Japanese knotweed) are classified as 'controlled waste' and therefore must not be disposed of with household waste or garden waste.

Last updated 25 September 2019

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