Property Care Association

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Male wearing a checked shirt and yellow high-vis jacket inspecting a weeded area using an iPad camera

JBB Knotweed News

Do I need a Japanese Knotweed Survey?

It is very common for a homeowner’s first encounter with Japanese Knotweed to be when they are buying or selling a property or planning a development of their home or garden. The media and scaremongering that exists around Japanese Knotweed is often people’s only frame of reference, which creates fear, anxiety, and confusion. 

This is a common starting point for a lot of our discussions with home owners. The first part of most of our initial discussions is to provide a summary of key details and the risks associated with the plant, and what it potentially may mean for their own situation. Helping reassure and educate clients during our first contact is a very rewarding part of what we do.
Invasive plants such as Japanese Knotweed are not fatal to a property, securing lending, or long term site developments – provided they are dealt with correctly by professionals.
Japanese Knotweed plants in a garden
Male wearing a checked shirt and yellow high-vis jacket inspecting a weeded area using an iPad camera

How can I identify Japanese Knotweed?

During the growing months (March – October) there are a number of features that can be used to identify Japanese Knotweed. These include:
  • An alternate leaf construction
  • Large, shield shaped leaves
  • Vibrant green colour leaf
  • Regular nodes
  • Purple/green speckled hollow stems
Different times of the year will impact what to look for. We have a number of articles on our website that provide information on how to identify Japanese Knotweed during winter, spring, and summer.
We also offer a free identification service, where images can be submitted though our website. There are a number of look-a-like plants that we are able to confirm at no cost and without attending site.
An initial conversation and ID verification is important and forms the first stage in the process.

Our short video in which our surveyors talk through the key identification features of Japanese Knotweed provides an excellent summary of what to look out for:

Will the property surveyor assess for Japanese Knotweed in the home report?

Whilst property surveyors are highly trained in a wide range of areas, they do not actively survey for invasive plants such as Japanese Knotweed. Where noticed, a surveyor may highlight the presence of invasive species, however home reports typically include statements advising that a property “has not been assessed for Japanese Knotweed.”
An invasive species survey looks explicitly for plants of invasive concern and is conducted by an expert who has expertise within this discipline.
It is becoming increasingly common for home buyers to instruct for an invasive species survey be carried out, in addition to the home report. This is either due to a known concern regarding the suspected presence of Japanese Knotweed, or simply to provide peace of mind. 

How to book a Japanese Knotweed Survey

There are so many factors that can impact treatment options and plans for management of invasive species such as Japanese Knotweed. Our team are happy to discuss your situation over the phone and by sending us images, however in order to assess Japanese Knotweed growth on and around your property, an invasive species survey will be required. Whilst we are able to provide indicative costs based on projects of a similar nature, no reputable invasive species contractor will ever provide a treatment plan and quote without attending site.
A survey for a typical residential property will take around 30 minutes. During the visit, our surveyor will assess the entire property and surrounding boundary areas. A pathway assessment (how can Japanese Knotweed spread onto, off, or around an area) will be undertaken in conjunction with your current and future plans for the land. Whilst the homeowner does not need to be present, we often recommend that they take the opportunity to discuss all aspects of their situation with our surveyor.
Upon completion of the visit, a survey report will be issued, outlining the extent & presence of Japanese knotweed, including mapping details, options for treatment, and a costed proposal for remediation. This provides a plan that offers the most effective solution for your own situation.
Japanese Knotweed in Scotland is covered by the Wildlife and Natural Environment Act 2011 & The Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. Any waste arisings must be managed with a duty of care and in accordance with the Environmental Protection Act 1990. Failing to implement the correct plan for management can result in your situation being made worse and also give rise to legal breaches that could potentially result in criminal and civil penalties in the future.
Whilst homeowners can at times be reluctant to instruct a Japanese Knotweed survey, it is a fundamental and essential stage in the process.
If you would like to find out more about our process, get in touch and our team will talk you through everything you need to know about how best to deal with your situation.
Female wearing a JBB Knotweed solutions hard hat and orange high-vis jacket inspecting green leaves and red stems of Japanese Knotweed

Book a Japanese Knotweed Survey

We can tell you if you definitely have Japanese

Knotweed on your property and recommend the

best course of action.

We can tell you if you definitely have Japanese Knotweed on your property and recommend the best course of action.