City Weed Abatement Program

Weeds & Worthless Vegetation

When plants are overgrown they become a nuisance and unacceptable to the general public and need to be controlled. Lincoln's ordinance specifies that weeds or worthless vegetation must not grow higher than six inches above the ground.

Why These Plants Be Controlled

 Effects on Property Owner

  • They are heavy users of soil moisture.
  • They crowd out desirable plants.
  • They reduce property value.
  • They become a misdemeanor law violation if not controlled.

Other Adverse Effects

  • They are unsightly.
  • They attract pests.
  • They may cause health problems.
  • They are a fire hazard.
  • They are aggressive spreaders.
  • They adversely affect the appearance of the neighborhood.

How to Control Undesirable Plant Growth

Prevent the Germination of Weeds

  • Plant and maintain desirable vegetation.
  • Use temporary vegetative covers.
  • Use mulches and ground covers on bare areas.
  • Use pre-emergent herbicides.

Control Weeds That Do Become Overgrown

  • Have a timely mowing and weeding schedule.
  • Use post-emergent herbicides.
  • Do a complete job.
  • A few overgrown weeds look as bad as a lot of weeds.

Who is Responsible for Controlling Weeds

Lincoln's weed control program places the responsibility for cutting vegetation on the property owner. Citizens are responsible for controlling weeds and worthless vegetation growing on their property and in the area from the property line to the center of the alley or street abutting the property.


An inspector may visit property as a result of a complaint or their observation that there may be overgrown weeds and worthless vegetation. If there are overgrown weeds, the owner is issued a notice requiring cutting and/or removal within five days.

Owners that don't perform timely cutting of their weeds and worthless vegetation are subject to having the cutting and removal done by the City or a contracted weed control service.

Contracted Weed Control Service

If a weed notice is not complied with, the City may have the cutting and/or removal done. The owner will be billed for all costs associated with this cutting. This will include the cost of the contracted cutting and/or removal, and related clerical and inspection costs. This resulting cost will be significantly greater than if performed by the owner or someone the owner hires to do the work.

Special Assessment

Any unpaid bills will become a lien on the property and a special assessment levied. These special assessments, plus interest, have to be paid before land can be sold.

Reporting Overgrown Vegetation

Any citizen may call the Weed Control Office at 402-441-7817 or email to report a location with overgrown vegetation. Anonymous complaints may also be submitted using the City of Lincoln UPLNK site use the Property - Tall Grass / Weeds section.