Japanese Knotweed Disposal

Japanese Knotweed Disposal In The UK: Legal Ramifications and Process

When it comes to the disposal of Japanese knotweed in the UK, it’s essential to understand the legal implications and follow the correct procedures. As Japanese knotweed removal professionals with over 20 years of experience, we are here to guide you through the process, ensuring you have the necessary knowledge to comply with regulations and responsibly dispose of this invasive plant.


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Japanese Knotweed Disposal: The Process

Proper disposal of excavated Japanese knotweed involves a series of steps to ensure compliance with regulations and responsible waste management. Here, we outline the process to guide you through Japanese knotweed disposal in the UK.

1. Excavation and Removal

The first step in the process is the careful excavation and removal of Japanese knotweed from the site. It is crucial to employ experienced professionals who are knowledgeable about the correct techniques to minimize the risk of spreading the plant during excavation.

2. Packaging and Transportation

Once excavated, the Japanese knotweed must be securely packaged to prevent any further spread. It should be placed in sealed, robust containers or bags that comply with waste transportation regulations. The packaging should be clearly labeled as “Japanese knotweed” to ensure proper handling.

3. Licensed Waste Carrier

To transport the excavated Japanese knotweed, you must engage a licensed waste carrier. It is illegal to transport controlled waste, including Japanese knotweed, without the appropriate license. The waste carrier will transport the packaged Knotweed to a licensed disposal facility.

4. Licensed Disposal Facility

Japanese knotweed disposal must be completed via a licensed waste disposal facility authorised to accept controlled waste. These facilities have the necessary permits and infrastructure to handle and process the Knotweed in an environmentally safe manner.

5. Documentation and Record-Keeping

Throughout the disposal process, it is crucial to maintain accurate documentation and records. This includes waste transfer notes, consignment notes, and proof of the licensed waste carrier. These records demonstrate compliance and can be requested for verification by authorities.

6. Certificate of Disposal

Upon successful disposal of the excavated Japanese knotweed, you may receive a certificate of disposal from the waste disposal facility. This document serves as proof that you have fulfilled your legal obligations and can be retained for future reference.


In Summary

Disposing of excavated Japanese knotweed in the UK requires compliance with legal regulations and responsible waste management practices. By understanding the legal ramifications and following the correct procedures, you can ensure the safe and compliant disposal of this invasive plant. Remember to engage professionals, use licensed waste carriers, and dispose of the Knotweed at authorised facilities. By doing so, you contribute to preventing the further spread of Japanese knotweed and protect the environment.




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It is not illegal to have Japanese knotweed on your land and you do not have a legal duty to notify anyone that you have Japanese knotweed on your land.

However, there are laws which cover the spread and transport of Japanese knotweed, and without taking action it is possible that you may commit an offence, or be liable for action in the civil courts (you could be sued).

It is an offence under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 to plant or cause Japanese knotweed to grow in the wild. Prosecutions are very rare, however, and JKSL are not aware of any charges brought under this legislation for allowing Japanese knotweed to spread into a domestic property.

Japanese knotweed (and soil or other material containing Japanese knotweed) is considered “controlled waste” under the Environmental Protection Act 1990. This means that if you move Japanese knotweed off your land there are various legal duties in how the waste is managed. Controlled waste can only be taken to licensed landfill – this is expensive, the material needs to be booked in with the landfill and there are limited sites which will accept Japanese knotweed materials.


You do not have any legal responsibility to treat Japanese knotweed – however (as outlined above), there are laws which cover what you must, can and cannot do with Japanese knotweed material.

In addition, there have been cases in the civil court where neighbours have been successfully sued for damages for allowing Japanese knotweed to affect adjacent properties.

Local authorities have the power to issue a “community protection notice” (CPN) to compel you to treat Japanese knotweed if it can be shown that you are causing an impact on “local amenity” through your failure to treat or manage the plant.

A Bristol company was prosecuted and fined £18,000 plus costs in 2018 for failing to comply with a CPN which ordered the control of Japanese knotweed on their land. The company was also ordered to secure a management plan from a specialist company within a month of the judgement.


Japanese knotweed is not the most damaging of plant species – but it can grow through tarmac and through small gaps or weaknesses in paving, concrete and other surfaces.

Where construction works are carried out in areas where Japanese knotweed is present, we have seen cases where the plant grows up through floorboards, or between gaps between the old and new construction, resulting in Japanese knotweed plants growing inside a house or commercial building. When this occurs, treatment becomes significantly more complex.