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Invasive Non-native weeds


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About the only thing I am doing in my garden at the moment is fighting a losing battle with Himilayan balsam that has spread from the banks of the brook that runs outside one of the boundaries of my garden. This year it has spread far further into my garden than last year.

 

Thus far I have been pulling the developing plants out and putting them in my garden waste bin but this is possibly not the best route and pretty soon I will have more than that volume to deal with on a weekly basis.

 

Which leaves me in a quandary, burnt it or weed kill it? It certainly does not seem to be something that would burn without considerable drying and I am conscious of weed killing so close to the brook.

 

suggestions?

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The problem with glyphosate is that it is persistent in streams and kills aquatic plants, so it must not be sprayed adjacent to watercourses, or in any area where run off could reach a water course quickly.  Glyphosate is broken down in soil pretty quickly (around 48 hours or so) so is generally fine for weed control away from watercourses.  It's only when the stuff can get into the water before it's broken down that it causes a potential problem.

 

You can adapt the technique used to kill Japanese Knotweed with glyphosate, I think.  It's not at all quick, but it is reasonably safe.  It means getting some syringes and injecting glyphosate directly into the stems of the weeds.  If the plants have interconnected root systems, as Japanese Knotweed often does, then with luck the effect of the glyphosate can be greater than just the treated stems; there's a fair chance that the rootstock will be killed.

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I could probably get way with spraying mine but the stuff that's growing on the banks of the brook would be a problem and if I leave that, it'll get worse and worse.

 

From what you're saying I could also paint the leaves of those plants or a regular basis and see what happens. I don't think there's too much in the way of aquatic plants but there is wildlife and as much as I hate the ducks that wake me up at half 4 in the morning I don't want to poison them.

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It's not likely that the ducks would be bothered by it, but fish, crustaceans and plants in the stream probably would.  Painting it on the leaves works OK; you might even get away with carefully using a small hand sprayer, one that you can control so that it doesn't over-spray beyond the target.  Most commercial available glyphosates already contain a surfactant (a bit like detergent) to make the stuff wet the surfaces of leaves more easily, and that tends to reduce the over-spray problem if the spray pressure is kept low, as it makes it easier for droplets to coalesce.  The idea is to only put the stuff where it's needed, and prevent any spray drift that might contaminate the stream.

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2 minutes ago, Triassic said:

The Environment Agency have guidance on dealing with invasive species. Might be worth a read.

 

http://evidence.environment-agency.gov.uk/FCERM/en/SC060065/MeasuresList/M2/M2T1.aspx?pagenum=4

I started out here https://www.gov.uk/guidance/prevent-the-spread-of-harmful-invasive-and-non-native-plants and it seems the top hit for dealing with invasive species near water from those links, for booklet 895604 cannot be found

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18 minutes ago, Triassic said:

I'd linked to the EA, as it is they who will be questioning you under PACE caution if you kill all the fish. If you follow the EA guidance, you have a defence!

I know but that basic guidance doesn't seem to be available

 

after some more inventive goggling, thanks to north Tyneside for hosting it. EA say ******* nuke it with  roundup. nothing to worry about

 

Edited by daiking
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On my earlier .Gov.uk link it points you toward a 5 page form for weed killing near a watercourse, no mention in the EA booklet I saw. Will have a proper look later. Supposed to be working now...

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If you want to do selective weedkilling using GP then there is a tried and tested way.

 

You need a bucket, some marigold gloves, and a cheap pair of cotton gloves....

 

Mix the GP to the spray strength on the pack with cold water, add a squirt of ordinary fairy liquid.

Put the marigolds on, and then the cotton gloves... yes, you now look silly !

 

Dip your cotton gloved hands into the bucket of GP and then wring your hands and wipe the gloves over the leaves of what you want to remove. Do 4 or 5 leaves on each plant and try not to saturate them as it will drip off otherwise. Work your way along the plants you want to remove and repeat after 2 weeks, then another 2 weeks.

 

Yes its laborious but it works !

 

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13 minutes ago, PeterW said:

If you want to do selective weedkilling using GP then there is a tried and tested way.

 

You need a bucket, some marigold gloves, and a cheap pair of cotton gloves....

 

Mix the GP to the spray strength on the pack with cold water, add a squirt of ordinary fairy liquid.

Put the marigolds on, and then the cotton gloves... yes, you now look silly !

 

Dip your cotton gloved hands into the bucket of GP and then wring your hands and wipe the gloves over the leaves of what you want to remove. Do 4 or 5 leaves on each plant and try not to saturate them as it will drip off otherwise. Work your way along the plants you want to remove and repeat after 2 weeks, then another 2 weeks.

 

Yes its laborious but it works !

 

 I was intending to use a brush but that's what I had in mind

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