Ban on weedkiller causing ‘injuries’ in area of England as plants & hedges left to go wild

Monty Don gives advice on how to keep weeds 'under control'

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Weeds are a garden nuisance and need to be taken care of before they damage the growth of other plants and flowers. Although chemical weedkillers are available to buy in garden centres and most shops, garden expert recommend using natural methods to get rid of weeds.

Brighton and Hove council have banned the use of herbicides to eradicate weeds.

The chemical solutions cause harm to the environment and can damage surrounding flora and fauna.

Natural weedkillers are more eco-friendly and are often better for your pocket too.

Even lemon juice, which costs next to nothing, can be used to kill weeds.

However, after Brighton and Hove disallowed the selling of chemical weed-killers in the area, residents have claimed their pavements have become trip hazards and eyesores.

Two elderly women have even reportedly ended up in hospital after slipping on the weeds.

Some residents said the issue worsened after a team of weed eradicators was impacted by Covid isolation rules.

A team of eight people was employed to pull out daisies, dandelions, and moss on the streets, but they have had to self-isolate after coming into contact with the virus.

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People living in Brighton are urging council officials to think of other – easier and quicker – ways to remove the weeds.

Robert Nemeth, a councillor for Brighton and Hove’s Wish ward, said: “It’s all very well for a trendy city-dweller to say, ‘Let’s rewild our pavements’ after hearing about the cause for the first time.

“They probably haven’t got any friends who are elderly or disabled, who are most likely to be seriously injured under the current unsatisfactory situation.”

This is not the first time residents have discussed the ban on herbicides.

The council decided two years ago to scrap the use of chemical weedkillers by 2022.

Hundreds of Brighton residents were in favour of the plan and signed a petition to support it.

They wanted to prevent chemicals such as glyphosate, a key ingredient in many weed-killers, from polluting the environment.

Being the only council in the UK with a Green MP, people living in Brighton are known for their environmentally progressive views.

However, many residents have now complained about weeds popping up everywhere on the streets and roads.

Alistair McNair, another councillor, said he had received multiple complaints from people who had ended up in hospital after tripping over sycamore, nettles, buddleia, ragwort, and other invasive plants.

But weeds are not the only problem in the area.

Overgrown hedgerows are also causing some people to injure themselves, according to Natasha Spearhill, a resident who is partially sighted.

She said: “Overgrown hedgerows left untended are certainly more dangerous to the blind or partially impaired because white sticks don’t navigate them well.

“Speaking from experience, I certainly get sick and tired of injuries that would otherwise not be sustained because of overhanging bushes.”

Brighton and Hove council has said that many people “have welcomed the weeds as habitats for insects and bees, and complain when we remove them”.

However, it added it will hire an external contractor to help get rid of the plant pests.

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