Overgrowth of plants and foliage along roadways results in hazardous driving conditions and often serves as habitats for potentially disease-carrying pests. Restricted vision, damaged roads, and distraction are just a few of the hazardous driving conditions that can be caused by overgrowth along the roadsides. Mosquitos, snakes, and some rodents are a few of the pests that commonly inhabit this overgrowth.
Foliage can block pedestrians, signs, intersections and driveways from a driver’s view. Pavement can be damaged or destroyed by the roots of plants growing up to the edge of the road. Water standing in ditches can undermine roadbeds and result in damaged or destroyed pavement. A driver can be distracted by overhanging limbs and foliage too near the roadside.
Overgrown ditches are a favored habitat for many mosquitos, snakes, rodents, spiders, and other creatures. It is true that not all of them carry diseases, but most of them cause irritation, injury or damage to humans or property. Reduction of their habitats and breeding grounds is beneficial to the residents of our community.
The purpose of Botanic Abatement is to manage and control roadside vegetation, with the goal of improved driving conditions and decreased habitats for pests, while maintaining and improving the integrity of the environment and the quality of life of the residents. These aims are best met through the practice of Integrated Vegetation Management.
Integrated Vegetation Management (IVM) is proven to be effective, economical, and environmentally friendly. Prevention of traffic accidents, decreased need for road repair, and pest habitat reduction are ways that IVM lessens expenditures and improves quality of life. The methods and techniques employed in the IVM program are designed to have the most positive impact on the environment that is possible while effectively managing roadside vegetation.
The major methods that are used in IVM are Cultural, Mechanical, and Chemical. Promoting the growth of desired plants and removing undesired plants, when done by hand, are examples of Cultural methods. Mechanical methods consist of techniques such as mowing, trimming, and grading. The most common Chemical methods are banding and spraying.
A wide range of county services, performed jointly with Botanic Abatement, bring about effective and economical use of resources, better drainage, reduced erosion, increased traffic safety, less road repair, improved appearance of roadways, protection of wildlife, and the greater comfort and safety of residents. Communication with the residents and response to the needs of the community provide the final link in achieving the purposes and goals of county services.