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Published: 2014-09-15 00:00:00

Spring’s a time for getting back into the garden to clear away unwanted weeds and prepare properties for the joys of summer.

But it’s also a time when those unwanted weeds can end up being dumped in inappropriate places, raising the risks of weeds spreading and causing a headache for other property owners.

“We appeal to Waikato people to make sure they do the right thing when they’re dumping weeds cleared away in spring,” says Waikato Regional Council biosecurity team leader Wendy Mead.

“In particular we remind people not to dump weeds on roadsides or lay-bys, reserve areas, gullies or dune areas.

“It’s illegal, risks the spread of weeds and damage to natural areas, as well as creating a problem for other people to deal with.

“There are plenty of approved garden waste facilities or refuse transfer stations where weeds can be safely taken to and we strongly encourage people to do the right thing,” said Mrs Mead.

“If cost is an issue, we’d note that many weeds can also be safely composted at home. Regional council pest plant officers can help with advice on this and other forms of weed disposal.”

Mrs Mead said New Zealand had a long history of pest plants becoming established in natural areas after being dumped by roadsides and in lay-bys, reserves, gullies and dune areas.

“The weeds can just take over and spoil some really beautiful natural areas,” she warned.

“Every year we see garden waste dumped in the wrong place. For example, we’ve already seen garden waste being dumped in Hamilton gullies and near roadsides in Raglan this spring.”

People wanting advice on how to dispose of weeds can call 0800 800 401.