Galway City Council has issued new rules for people gardening in public areas around the cutting and collection of grass, and trimming of plants.
The Parks Department at the council has said that recently it has seen cutting back of shrubbery during the bird nesting season and the cutting of grass very short thereby eliminating many species that attract bees such as orchids.
The city council has said that it provides a grass cutting service which mulches grass, leaves, and pruning material into a thin layer that naturally breaks down in the soil.
Ideal for shrub borders, under hedges and in woodland areas. Mulching reduces weeds, moderates soil temperatures, retains moisture and prevents soil compaction.
The council is asking people not to collect this grass if they are gardening in public areas, as it then becomes a waste product that has to be disposed of.
“Galway City is fortunate to have many beautiful natural areas and it is vital that these areas are protected, enhanced and conserved.”
“Galway City Council acknowledges the efforts from members of the public in Galway City in taking pride in maintaining and keeping their local areas clean and tidy while enhancing biodiversity.”
“As part of the Tidy Towns Initiative, many residents’ groups undertake additional activities on Public Lands such as collecting grass and pruning shrubs.”
“Unfortunately this results in a natural product turning into a waste product which has to be disposed of.”
The council has now issued several new rules for any gardening that takes place in pubic areas.
If someone does collect grass, the council says that it is then their responsibility to dispose of it correctly, and the council will not bear any associated costs.
People are, in general, being asked not to prune back or otherwise cut plants on public land, as this can damage the plants and lead to disease.
For people that “feel strongly about tidying up greenery” the council plans to arrange two days a year per estate, one in Spring and one in Autumn, where mulching machinery will be brought to estates for greenery to be mulched on-site, where it can be left or taken away to use elsewhere.
The council has also announced its intention to help people set up their own composting facilities and give information on managing them.
Composting garden waste can turn it into a valuable resource for gardening to help plants grow.
“From 31st July 2020, Galway City Council will not collect green waste from areas around the city.”
“Grass cuttings from public green areas should not be collected by any members of the public.”
“Residents’ Associations will be given two weeks’ notice of the next date that mulching will be carried out on branches etc.”
“It is anticipated that this will happen in late Autumn. Galway City Council requests that no cutting back be carried out before this.”