The City currently applies some herbicides to control dandelions and other broad leaf weeds. We apply herbicides regularly to sport fields, as they have a high use and too many broad leaf weeds can cause safety issues and threaten the health of the turf.
For other areas, we apply at a lower frequency. Parks with high weed-density will usually have a herbicide application approximately every four years.
The City takes the health and well-being of citizens and green spaces seriously, so all herbicides and pesticides are carefully chosen and applied to be the least toxic to off-target plants and animals. Furthermore, all pesticides and herbicides are fully certified by both the federal and provincial governments.
Notification and application signs will be posted in the community before, during and after any necessary applications. Herbicide is not applied within 30 metres of a playground unless the entire area is closed to the public and school sites do not receive applications while students are in attendance. There are also a variety of pesticide-free parks in Calgary.
In 2016 we are piloting some alternative weed management techniques, including using goats to manage Canada thistle and different methods of dandelion control.
Herbicide application are complete for 2016. 2017 applications will begin in the spring.
NOTE: applications are weather dependent and may not take place as scheduled.