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By CondoAssociation.com • June 9, 2018

How to manage HOA gardening rules?

Our condo Bylaws state: No member shall perform any landscaping or plant any trees, shrubs or flowers or place any ornamental materials upon common elements without the express written approval of the Board of Directors. Our Resolutions specifically says: Flowers and other plants may not be planted in the stone covered areas. Co-owners who elect to remove stones and puncture the weed block plastic underneath, will be charged for restoration of weed block and stone.

The board received a complaint that someone had planted flowers in their courtyard stone, so a board member followed up on that and spoke with the co-owner who did not take the news well and proceeded to point out others who had violated that rule as well but were not being singled out. The board then spent hours reviewing our bylaws and Resolutions and held a special board meeting on how to proceed and decided that a letter would be drafted and given to all co-owners basically stating that it had been brought to our attention that the board has not been enforcing Resolution 15(f), And we apologize for this oversight, and since we are obligated to correct this, we are asking co-owners to please remove any plants/flowers that have been planted in their courtyards (colored stone area surrounding tree in front of condo) by a specific date.

So far most are complying but one (a former board member) said she was given verbal permission by another former board member to plant a ground cover in her stones. She feels it should be "grandfathered" in and is threatening to quit helping take care of the front entrance landscaping if we force her to remove the ground covering. My understanding of "grandfathering" is for a NEW rule- not an existing rule that proper procedure wasn't followed. (Just an aside, she puts a lot of hours into the entrance landscaping and does a wonderful job but we also don't want to feel we are being held hostage with a threat of her quitting! ... AND another aside, her courtyard ground cover looks like 8" high weeds...not a pretty low lying ground cover, and does not match any other courtyard landscaping)

Any thoughts on how to proceed would be appreciated!

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Please note that blog comments and postings are not legal advice, rather only the opinions of our readers.
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