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A pesticide is anything that is intended to prevent, destroy, repel or manage a pest. A herbicide is something intended to prevent, destroy, repel or manage a unwanted plant.
Pesticide or herbicides are only used for weeds when absolutely necessary and when other treatments prove to be ineffective. Sports fields and Class 1 parks are the only areas that would be considered for this type of treatment.
By using appropriate pesticide selections for the issues presented, they can be used effectively and safely. Along with selection, timing of pesticide applications is also crucial in staying bee-friendly. Dandelions that pop up in the spring are bee’s first food source. Dandelion treatment is postponed until other plants flower in the spring in order to preserve this important early season food source for bees.
Cultural practices are used to combat undesirable weeds in most of our City parks. This includes providing optimal growing conditions for desirable plants by way of watering, fertilizing, aerating, and top dressing turf. Another cultural practice that was started is using goats to implement a targeted browsing approach for weed management in areas close to Chestermere Lake.
We do weekly monitoring of mosquitoes in areas that are typical habitats. If larvae counts, by way of dips, are within our action threshold, we will apply a larvicide that targets mosquito larvae while leaving other organisms unaffected.
We also implement other cultural controls such as removing standing water where applicable, and keeping grass mowed regularly. Residents can also help in controlling mosquito populations by doing the same thing. A few examples are changing water in bird baths once a week, ensuring the eave trough on homes are draining properly, keeping grass mowed regularly to make the lawn a less desirable habitat and removing any other standing water on their property.
With respect to City-owned property, we will typically not address dandelions unless they are causing considerable damage to the turf. Class 1 parks may receive spot spraying with herbicides when weeds exceed a threshold of 10/sq m. We usually use non-chemical treatments such as mowing.
Yes. Our Unsightly Property Bylaw requires that residents keep their weeds below 15 cm (6 inches). Residents can contact the City’s Bylaw Division for more information.