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Vegetation Management and Watercourses

Council has a responsibility to prepare and implement strategies for the sustainable management of land under its care and control, in partnership with the community.

Council worker carrying out work on a roadside

Roadside Vegetation Management Plan

Adelaide Hills Council has a responsibility to prepare and implement strategies for sustainable management for land under its care and control, in partnership with the community.

The maintenance and provision of a safe network of road reserves is one aspect of Council’s land management that is influenced by a broad range of stakeholders.

The Council has created and implemented the Roadside Vegetation Management Plan (the Plan), to reflect the wide range of community values and uses for the network of road reserves in the Adelaide Hills.

The Plan is designed to help to provide clear guidance to staff and others who work on road reserves so that sound environmental practice is used; and most importantly that a consistent regional approach to road reserve management is adopted.

Native Vegetation Marker System (NVMS) sites denote environmental significance and status and are therefore a primary focus of the document to ensure these sites are managed correctly in respect to conservation, vegetation clearances, weed mitigation, grading and pathogen control.

Programmed vegetation maintenance

Trees are an important and valuable part of the Adelaide Hills landscape. They provide amenity and environmental benefits and play an important role in maintaining a 'sense of place' for Hills townships and countryside. Although trees can sometimes cause a nuisance to individuals, trees are generally considered to be a part of the natural environment and there is an expectation by the community numerous benefits of trees outweigh any minor inconveniences.

The maintenance of Council trees is prioritised by the risk that a tree presents. For example, a branch/tree that has fallen across public roads or has imminent potential to fall are prioritised above normal tree pruning requests. Tree pruning will only be carried out when necessary to ensure that a tree grows to its potential or when it does or is likely to, interfere with public infrastructure or to prevent safe passage by pedestrians or vehicles.

Removal of trees under the care and control of Council will be carried out in accordance with principles outlined in the Tree Management Policy and relevant legislation.

Native Vegetation Marker System (blue marker sites)

The Native Vegetation Marker System (NVMS) has been designed to identify sites of conservation significance, which are protected by legislation due to high value native vegetation.

Council has adopted the NVMS to assist in management of roadside native vegetation. The system is voluntary and uses a standard sign for marking sites, assisting Council and other agencies to protect remnant native vegetation and to comply with the requirements of Federal and State legislation during roadworks and other public utility work nearby.

The NVMS supports best practice management for roadside native vegetation. The marking system could be readily extended for identifying other landscape, historic and cultural features if and when required by Council.

Creeks and watercourses on private land

Creeks and watercourses running through private property are the land owner's responsibility. Council is only responsible where there are pits and pipes within your property and within an easement to Council. Information about Certificate of Titles can be found on

All creeks and watercourses operate under common law and as the resident or landowner you are responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of the watercourse and to ensure the watercourse can take adequate flow without blockages, causing flooding to yourself or upstream.

If your creek or watercourse is causing flooding, please ensure it has adequate capacity to take all flows and work with your adjoining land owner to ensure they have no blockages or flow restrictions.

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