Operational Weed Abatement Policy

The City of Lincoln Municipal Code

8.46.010 Owner of Real Estate to Remove Weeds
It shall be the duty of every owner of real estate in the city to cut and clear, or clear such real estate, together with one-half of the streets and alleys abutting thereon, of all weeds or worthless vegetation whenever such weeds or worthless vegetation shall extend more than six inches above the ground.


The following definitions will be used in the implementation of the City of Lincoln's weed abatement ordinance.

Weeds  - undesirable vegetation that includes grasses, grasslike plants, forbs, succulents, and woody plants. These are plants that are commonly considered to be weeds or invading volunteer plants from desirable plants that become weedy in nature i.e. tree seedlings.

Worthless Vegetation -

  1. Vegetation that is overgrown,
  2. That is mature, or
  3. Vegetative material on the ground.

Vegetation that is managed for beneficial use or if on slopes that are too steep to mow and inaccessible areas will not be considered worthless vegetation:

  1. If weeds are controlled,
  2. If mature plants are cut, if possible,
  3. If not found to be a vector or rodent harborage,
  4. Does not contribute to noxious pollens to the atmosphere and,
  5. Does not unreasonably interfere with the use and enjoyment of abutting the public or private property.

The vegetation must also be managed to meet the requirements of other city ordinances relating to health, traffic safety, obstructions, fire hazards, and public right-of-ways.

Beneficial use - Beneficial use may include:

  • Erosion control
  • Control of pollutant runoff
  • Educational purposes
  • Cultivation of vegetation for consumption, pleasure or business reasons
  • Natural areas including wetlands
  • Wooded areas

Cut and Clear- cutting and removal of weeds and worthless vegetation including the removal of downed tree limbs when necessary to allow for cutting and removal of weeds and worthless vegetation. This may include a beneficial use area

  • If weeds are unabated,
  • Mature growth is not cut, or,
  • When it is determined there is a health or safety hazard.

Clear - Removal of vegetative material on the ground that is determined to be a prohibited health and safety hazard {8.02.030. (5)}