Planting a garden on a road verge

Council has developed self-assessable criteria for residents wishing to enhance or beautify the road verge.

Council has developed self-assessable criteria (DOCX, 1.2MB) to support residents wishing to enhance or beautify the road verge in front of their property. Verge gardens could include native, edible or rain gardens.

The road verge is the area of land between your property boundary and the road. The typical road verge within our region consists of grass, footpath and a council provided street tree.

The self-assessable criteria allows residents to utilise the verge for planting a garden, while retaining access for pedestrians, underground utilities and trees.

Creating a garden that meets the self-assessable criteria does not require council approval.

To be eligible for planting under self-assessment, the vegetation must satisfy all criteria at all times. Criteria may be subject to change.

Planting options

The following planting options are available to residents.

The road verge planting list (DOCX, 367KB) provides a selection of approved species that fit with the character and theme of the Sunshine Coast.

Garden beds

  • Low growing gardens can be planted anywhere within the verge where appropriate access is maintained
  • Plants may be up to 50cm high at maturity
  • Gardens must be set back from the road edge by 60cm
  • Where there is no formed path on the verge, a minimum 1.8m width must be left clear for pedestrian access
  • Only bio-degradable mulches such as wood-chip, leaves and compost to be used. Mulch must be contained within the garden bed area ensuring that it does not become a slip or trip hazard to pedestrians or be placed in a way that it may enter waterways.


  • Hedges planted against the property boundary can encroach out 80cm from boundary line
  • Can grow to 1.5 m high at maturity
  • A 1 m setback from the driveway is required to maintain sight lines.

It is important to refer to the planting a self-assessable verge garden (DOCX, 1.2MB) for a full list of the self-assessment criteria and examples for verge planting.

If you wish to plant anything outside this list or self-assessable criteria, you will need to apply for a permit.

Note that infrastructure and landscaping approved through the development assessment process is exempt from this criteria.

Frequently asked questions

More information

Refer to the links below for more information on verge planting or clearing:

If you have any feedback or questions, contact council.