Have YOU been bothered by the overgrown vegetation making our famous interior sidewalks less than truly walkable? I bet everyone has noticed and been bothered by this problem, which is especially bad for people with baby carriages, or the visually impaired.
Greenbelt Homes Inc. rules require that sidewalks be kept clear, and members are even issued warnings about conditions like this, but then what? This particular section near me was in this condition all last year, so clearly there’s no enforcement of the rule. I’ve been told that only when neighbors complain is the rule enforced and that neighbors are hesitant to rat out their close neighbors, so this is what have.
This past weekend neighbors in my court gathered for a party and the topic of this sidewalk section came up, with everyone joining in the grousing, so I decided to ask someone in authority about it – someone on the Board. Lots of suggestions were offered, including attending the Board in person to complain, or writing to the staff or Board president, with accompanying photos.
The first GHI meeting I’d be able to attend is in late summer, so I’m posting about it here instead, and will forward the link to anyone who might listen.
In addition to impinging on the sidewalk, this particular vegetation is half dead and much what’s still alive is sickly. Red-tipped photinia is the offending shrub in question and that’s no surprise, as it’s one of the most disease-prone plants that exist for our region. The home next door to this particular unit is currently on the market, and this vegetative mess sure isn’t contributing to the curb appeal of the row.
The Case of the Guerrilla Pruner
Not that I’m suggesting this, but… in my old neighborhood we had the same problem of impassable or dangerous sidewalks and the city only requiring proper maintenance if someone complained. Instead of continually jumping through bureaucratic hoops, one unknown neighbor took matters into his/her own hands, regularly sneaking out under cover of darkness to prune the offending vegetation him/herself. Trouble is, the Guerrilla Pruner, as we called him/her, knew nothing or didn’t care about proper pruning technique and routinely butchered plants, sometimes beyond redemption.
I was reminded of this butchering when I heard the suggestion that GHI simply allow neighbors to take their loppers into their own hands and remove any offending branches. It’s probably better than nothing being done but gee, I don’t know. Maybe with training or some indication that the pruner in question knows what they’re doing? I’ve volunteered to offer pruning demonstrations for the public, so I’d better get on it and make that happen.
Category: Our Gardens