Bass Coast,

Council Welcomes Nature Strip Gardens

Bass Coast residents will now be able to obtain a permit to plant in their nature strips after Bass Coast Shire Council adopted the Nature Strip Planting Guidelines at Wednesday night’s meeting.

Council developed the guidelines following a rise in community members wishing to plant out their nature strips last year.

The community were invited to comment on the guidelines in March this year.

Changes to the guidelines following community comment included simplifying the guidelines to emphasise the positive aspects of nature strip plantings, providing further information about where residents can seek advice from about the accurate location of underground services, and reducing required vegetation clearances.

Council also agreed to provide a sketch of a landscape plan to be available on request to make the application process easier for residents.

Mayor, Cr Neil Rankine, said there were a number of requirements that would need to be met for people to plant out their nature strips.

“Requirements for tree planting include planting them a minimum 2.5 metres from driveways, the property line and other trees in the nature strip, and we prefer them to be a maximum height of four metres,” Cr Rankine said.

“Trees must also not have invasive root systems and should be low growing where overhead electricity lines or other infrastructure is present.”

Cr Rankine said residents also needed to be aware that Council may prune or maintain any trees interfering with the nature strip’s primary purpose.

“Residents can also contact Council to see if the nature strip alongside their land is suitable for additional street trees to be planted. If so, Council will plant and maintain additional street trees at no cost to the resident.”

The Nature Strip Planting Guidelines will be available on Council’s website once the statutory process to have the guidelines included in Council’s Local Laws has been completed.