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Time to identify county roadside property as “Owner Will Maintain” prior to Public Works’ herbicide treatment

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Whatcom County Public Works Department officials say they are beginning the 2020 Road Shoulder Herbicide Program. Approximately 250 miles of roads are typically scheduled for treatment but due to COVID-19 precautions and staffing, only “certain safety locations and noxious sites” will be included this year.

Lawns and yard areas may have a minimum 12″ wide strip treated to aid drainage and minimize pavement damage.

Property owners who do not wish to have the right-of-way abutting their property treated have the option of maintaining it themselves. Agreements to this effect may be signed and “Owner Will Maintain” signs obtained from the Maintenance and Operation staff at 901 W Smith Road between 8am and 4pm, Monday through Friday. There is no charge for this service.

According to the Whatcom County website, the Herbicide Program includes:

  • The strip next to the pavement is treated for erosion control of the road surface by preventing encroachment of grasses and weeds. 
  • Low-growing brush and noxious weeds are treated without removing the grass, which serves as a filter for road surface water runoff. 
  • The dormant brush winter program keeps small trees and blackberries back from the road edge.
  • Applications also include signpost treatment, guardrail treatment, and noxious weeds.
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