Nature Strips

A nature strip (road reserve) is the strip of public land between a property boundary and the adjacent roadway.  They can have a number of important functions such as walkways around a community and providing remnant habitat for native species.  Many services (sewerage, power, phone) also run beneath them.

Who looks after the nature strips?

Under general council rules (across Australia), homeowners or their tenants are responsible for their nature strip's maintenance and upkeep.

Generally, the Mornington Peninsula Shire does not carry out maintenance on nature strips except where it plants street trees which are cared for and maintained by the Shire. The usual practice is for residents of abutting properties to maintain nature strips by regular mowing, edging turf, weeding and picking up litter.

Can I landscape / extend my garden onto the nature strip?

You can apply by making application for a permit to undertake landscaping works within the road reserve (nature strip). The permit process ensures that proposed works within the road reserve by a person or business doesn’t reduce or compromise the safe and efficient use of the nature strip for public purposes. 

There must be sufficient clearance (at least 1.5metres wide) kept available to allow for safe pedestrian access and landscaping around service utilities must be taken into consideration as they may require access to their asset. 

Well maintained nature strips add value to adjoining private properties and contribute neighbourhood character.  Landscaping in nature strips should also enhance and reinforce neighbourhood character.  If considering an application for landscaping a nature strip , there are guidelines included in the Private Works on Nature Strips Policy(PDF, 677KB) which are useful when considering your application.  

Parking on nature strips

To find out about parking on nature strips, visit the VicRoads parking page.

Apply to undertake works / landscaping / tree removal on a nature strip

Step 1.Read and check guidelines

Please read the detailed guidelines to help you with your application.  

Step 2.Check if the nature strip is covered by a heritage or vegetation protection planning overlay

If there is a planning overlay in place, a planning application may be needed.  To check whether there is an overlay please get a free planning property report for your address.

Step 3.Choose the type of permit required and apply.

  • Minor Landscaping Works: Less than 8.5m2 of nature strip
  • Tree Removal: For Tree Removal (where no planning permit applies) the contractor must supply a copy of Certificate of Currency for Public Liability Insurance with the application.  Where removal of tree is requested due to poor health an arborist report may be requested by the assessing officer.
  • Major Landscaping Works: works affecting greater than 8.5 m2 of the nature strip.  Application must include site plan indicating location and dimensions of proposed landscaping works and details of species of intended plants and trees.

Apply and pay online