Over the years mowing and pruning have increased at the request of area residents. Pilot project work is now underway to return the site to its originally designed grassland and woodland state. Future improvements to the meadow may include the planting of native wildflowers in the wetter areas.
What is the maintenance plan?
- Over seeding was completed in spring 2022 to further thicken healthy grass growth, especially on the tops of the hills.
- The trembling aspen bluff was cleaned up and a layer of mulch added.
What is happening in the meadow now?
- Continually re-evaluate meadow’s condition and adjust work plan accordingly.
- If weeds persist, perform herbicide treatment, followed by over seed treatment.
- Allow the aspen trees to sucker from their roots creating a small densely wooded bluff which over time will expand into the grassland area.
- Monthly mow a 1.8m wide (6 foot) strip along the inside edge of the asphalt all the way around the meadow and aspen bluff, while allowing trees to continue to naturally expand into the surrounding space.
- String trimming around culverts to maintain drainage
- Continue thistle and fox tail management with targeted trimming and selected spraying.
View some common questions and answers about Westhill Meadow.
Where is Westhill Meadow?
The south end of Westhill Park.
Did I see the City spraying herbicide?
Due to previous concerns raised by residents about mowing and weeding in the meadow, the City has prepared a robust maintenance plan for this area. Part of the plan is to kill the weeds in the space with Trillion Turf herbicide as necessary.
Why does the City use Trillion Turf Herbicide?
- Trillion Turf is designed and approved to kill broad leaf weeds in a park setting
- Trillion is approved for use by Health Canada through the Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA)
- Residents are asked to stay away during treatment activities. According to the PMRA approved label, residents can re-enter the park space after the area is dry
- Notification of treatment is provided to residents in two ways:
- Pesticide advisory line: 306-777-7777
- Signage that is posted 24 hours prior to treatment. Signage will remain onsite until a minimum of 24hrs has passed
Why is the City changing the way they maintain the Westhill Meadow?
The meadow was originally designed as a grassland and forested area. The pilot project is intended to transition the maintenance in the area back to the intended natural design. This will add variety to the park’s landscape, increase habitat for birds and small mammals and will, over time, reduce maintenance activities, saving resources and reducing carbon emissions.
How are other grassland areas in the City of Regina maintained?
Grassland spaces are designed for minimal maintenance. Each space is typically mowed once a year in August after grass has gone to seed. The City of Regina monitors space to respond to issues that may crop up from time-to-time and may require an adjusted maintenance schedule.
What is Canadian Thistle?
Canadian Thistle is an invasive root-creeping perennial weed that has white or purple flowers and long narrow, crinkled leaves with spiny edges. It is managed through herbicide application and mowing to prevent seed spread.
What is Foxtail Barley?
Foxtail Barley is an invasive grassy weed that usually shows up in summer. Before these weeds sprout their foxy seed heads, they can be difficult to spot, as the leaves look similar to the rest of the grass in your lawn. Foxtail Barley weed is controlled through managed mowing.
What kind of herbicide will be used to treat weeds in the Westhill Meadow?
Trillion Turf. As with all pesticides the product is safe provided with follow label directions as approved by Health Canada. Beyond the label, the City posts herbicide spray activities on the pesticide advisory line (306-777-7777). The areas to be treated will be posted 24 hours prior to spraying – and – the signage will remain up for 24 hours following treatment.
Why are there not more trees in the space?
Many of the original trembling aspen trees originally planted have died. By allowing the remaining trees to sucker many more trees will begin to appear in the near future.
What does the City do to prevent mosquitos?
The City of Regina applies a biological agent to areas of standing water to prevent mosquitos.
The long grass is a breeding ground for ticks and other pests, how is the City managing this?
The City is utilizing a mowed strip on either side of the asphalt and crusher pathways to minimize the risk of ticks and other pests transferring onto passers-by.
What does the City do to manage rabbits?
Rabbits are part of the Regina ecosystem and their populations ebb and flow. We have seen an increase of rabbits and rabbit damage in the past several years. Currently there isn’t a program to manage rabbit populations. To help overcome this, part of the plan within the Westhill Meadow is to allow for the aspen bluff to renaturalize and self-propagate. This will further fill in and replace trees that have died or been damaged by rabbits.
Why am I required to maintain my property, yet the City is allowed to let the grass grow?
The City manages its open space using a variety of methods. Spaces like the Westhill Meadow were originally designed to mimic a natural ecosystem, providing plants to help filter the water to improve water quality before reaching Wascana Creek. The meadow also provides important habitat for native birds and animals.