Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

Roadside Vegetation Management

Integrated Roadside Vegetation Management

MnDOT manages approximately 175,000 acres of roadside vegetation across Minnesota. This vegetation plays an important role in the safety and aesthetics of Minnesota roadsides. The composition of the vegetation varies greatly from grasslands, prairie, boulevard trees, hardwood forests, landscape plantings, and coniferous forests. Along most roadsides, there is a combination of vegetation types which may require differing maintenance techniques. MnDOT uses a variety of methods and combinations of these methods to achieve effective vegetation control.

Vegetation control methods

  • Biological control – The use of natural plant enemies to reduce or mitigate the effects of noxious weeds
  • Pesticides – The use of a chemical to control unwanted vegetation
  • Mowing – The use of mowing equipment to reduce the height of vegetation
  • Prescribed fire – The use of controlled fire to manage fire dependent plant communities


MnDOT mowing the roadside prairie planting
Leafy spurge beetles feeding on noxious weed
Prescribed fire along Hwy 52