Every year we commission YouGov to survey over 2,000 adults in the UK to explore awareness of invasive plants, how much people know about them and what they would do if their property was affected.
The key findings from our 2023 survey show:
- Awareness of Japanese knotweed is currently at 77%, which is slightly lower than last year, meaning almost a quarter of homeowners are unaware of the risks. Awareness continues to be higher among older age groups; 92% of people aged 55+ have heard of knotweed, compared to 43% of 18 – 24-year-olds.
- Around 5% of properties in the UK are affected by Japanese knotweed, either directly (growing on their property) or indirectly (growing on a neighbouring property). This amounts to around a million homes across the country.
- Almost a fifth (18%) of British adults have bamboo growing on their own or an adjacent property. Bamboo encroachment is a major problem, with close to 1 in 10 (9%) of those affected having their relationships with neighbours negatively affected.
- Only 24% of people would be concerned if bamboo was growing near their home, suggesting there remains a lack of awareness of the risks posed by bamboo, which can cause more damage than Japanese knotweed.
- If a buyer discovered knotweed on a property after they had bought it, but it hadn’t been declared by the seller, almost two thirds (63%) would consider taking legal action against the seller to recover removal costs and compensate them for diminution of the property’s value. If you’re selling a property with knotweed, be honest from the start!
Awareness is the key to protecting your property from the risks posed by invasive plants. Check out our ID Guides for more information or if you’re worried about a particular plant, email a photo to [email protected] and we’ll identify it for free.