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2021 Wild Parsnip Strategy Update

The City of Ottawa has informed Council that the 2021 Wild Parsnip Program will start on May 25, 2021, weather permitting. Similar to years past, the goal is to reduce the growth of wild parsnip in highly infested areas while ensuring that environmentally sensitive areas and public safety are not adversely impacted. In total, Council has approved $298,000 for this year’s strategy.

The 2021 Wild Parsnip Strategy will allow our team to:

· Continue and expand the application of Clearview herbicide to highly infested areas;

· Continue mowing operations, adjusting frequency and timing to best coincide with herbicide applications;

· Re-map infestation areas and levels;

· Continue the communication and awareness campaign in collaboration with partners in Ottawa Public Health (OPH), Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP), National Capital Commission (NCC), etc.;

· Provide weekly updates for Councillors on roadside and parkland spraying locations within each ward; and

· Prepare communication materials for Councillors to share with residents.

In order to notify the public of the herbicide application, a Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP)-approved “Notice of Herbicide Use” advertisement will appear in local newspapers one week prior to the start of spraying. However, given the large number of public access points for parks, signs will continue to be posted every 100 metres.

Similar to last year, rural residents who do not wish to have the roadside adjacent to their property sprayed will be given the option to opt-out of the Wild Parsnip Program. Should a resident opt out of the program, it will become their responsibility to manage any wild parsnip infestation adjacent to their property, as required by the Weed Control Act, 1990. Information has been shared on how to opt-out as part of the communications to residents on the City’s website and in print materials. A copy of the letter that will be sent to residents is in the attachments for your information. For additional information on wild parsnip, please consult the City of Ottawa’s website.

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