With spring upon us and the transition into summer bringing us warmer temperatures, returning birds and green landscapes, another plant joins the soon to be lush landscape - the Dandelion. 

This yellow flower being one of the first to grow in the spring provides some of the first color to our previous brown appearance, and more importantly some of the first food for the waking bees. This hearty plant establishes itself early and with its seeds spreading with the changing winds, quickly inhabits large areas in a short period of time.

The Dandelion is defined by the Manitoba Government as a noxious weed, however to some this weed is a welcomed sight, used to provide that first food for our bees, to make salads and wines, among other uses. To others however, it is a nuisance and property owners will work diligently to keep their yards free of this seemingly invasive plant.

Although we may have different views of the Dandelion we do need to understand that it is still a noxious weed and as provided under the City of Steinbach By-Law 1663 the control of weeds and grasses is as follows:

Section 2.1
(b) Except as hereinafter provided; the growth of grasses or weeds in excess of six (6) inches upon land occupied by a habitable structure, or twelve (12) inches upon land without a habitable structure or in irrigation and drainage ditches. These mowing requirements do not apply to flower gardens, vegetable gardens, plots of shrubbery, grain plots, or pastures used for feed, fodder or forage, or to City-owned areas kept in their natural state or to grasses or weeds which grow more than one hundred (100) feet from any street or habitable structure. Grasses or weeds which are located within one hundred (100) feet of a street, and on which no habitable structure is located within said one hundred (100) feet, shall be mowed to a height no greater than twelve (12) inches.
 
(c) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained herein, noxious plants or designated undesirable plants as defined in The Noxious Weeds Act shall be mowed to a height no greater than six (6) inches if located within one hundred (100) feet of a habitable structure or twelve (12) inches if located farther than one hundred (100) feet from a habitable structure.

Although they can be noticeably seen covering large areas of property, we need to be mindful before reporting it. As stated in the by-law, the plant must reach a height of 6 inches or greater before a notice can be issued to have them abated. 

Wondering how you can help? Looking for ideas on how to rid your lawns of the dandelions? Here some methods you can use to keep a healthy lush lawn, including chemical and chemical-free options:

Urban Guide to Weed Control

Organic Lawn Care Tips

We all know that the Dandelion is a very difficult weed to control but it is one we have to live with. By working together and caring for our lawns the best we can, we can help reduce the spread of this weed within the city.