We treat weeds on roads and pavements twice a year:

  • between mid-April and mid-June
  • between mid-August and mid-October.

The timing depends on weather conditions.

It takes 2 to 6 weeks to treat roads in one district. Some roads will be treated at the end of the programme, and therefore could have more weed growth by the time they are treated.

The herbicide we use is glyphosate diluted with water. It is the most commonly used weedkiller for public areas and is widely available from retail outlets.

It is approved for use by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) as safe to its users and the public, and for use on the public highway, amenity areas, private properties and gardens.

We do not use neonicotinoids.

Find out more about the herbicide glyphosate on the HSE website.

When treated, weeds do not die straight away. It can take several weeks for the weeds to die back and turn brown. The herbicide will only treat green weeds that are growing at the time of the treatment. New weeds will germinate and grow following the treatment and will be unaffected by the herbicide.

Once treated, the dead weeds will be cleared up by the district council as part of their street cleansing programmes.

We do not treat other weeds such as dandelions that grow in grass verges or shrub beds.

We use specialist treatment methods for harmful weeds, such as ragwort, giant hogweed and Japanese knotweed.

If you notice any of these harmful weeds on the highway then please report it online. If the weeds are located on private property then these are the responsibility of the landowner.

For Japanese knotweed located in the highway we have a planned treatment programme. We will visit these sites during September to apply herbicide.

More information on harmful and invasive weeds can be found on the GOV.UK website.

Pulling or hoeing weeds would save us using weedkiller. We recommend wearing gloves when touching any plant you are unfamiliar with, in case you have a reaction to the sap or prickles. Sweeping up after can help prevent further weeds growing.

The weedkiller we use may remain in the plant system for 6 weeks or more, so you should not put treated weeds into your compost or into your green waste collection. We are unable to collect removed weeds or dirt from you, so you must carefully and safely dispose them yourself.

Always make sure you can carry out any maintenance safely, wear personal protective equipment (PPE) and be aware of pedestrians, cyclists and drivers.

Report dead weeds to your district council.