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-   -   Calling for a garden weed expert (https://www.pprune.org/jet-blast/453185-calling-garden-weed-expert.html)

G-CPTN 31st May 2011 21:13

WRT Japanese Knotweed, the landowner has no liability to eradicate it (though might be liable if it spreads to adjacent land), however, should they decide to tackle it, there is a requirement that no material can be spread to any land other than an approved disposal site (ie you cannot take the dead vegetation to any municipal general dump - or any other non-licensed land, including any pieces that might adhere to the wheels of any vehicles leaving the site).

Japanese knotweed Law


Bonfires including Japanese Knotweed are not recommended, as pieces can be carried off-site by convection currents (thereby committing an offence).

MacBoero 31st May 2011 21:17

Sounds like you have already identified your nightmare invaders. In case your interested though, the following website was very useful to me in identifying some plants I had in my garden:

Greater Bindweed : Arrrrgh!
Shining Cranesbill : Looks OK.
Green Alkanet : Look OK too.

identify wildflowers online

DX Wombat 31st May 2011 21:23

Oh dear, you have drawn the short straw. :{

probes 31st May 2011 21:35

DXW, don't be so pessimistic! It could be used in flower arrangements like asparagus fern, couldn't it? :hmm:

G-CPTN 31st May 2011 21:45

From the environment Agency website:-

Landowners are not legally obliged to remove Japanese Knotweed, unless it is causing a nuisance to neighbouring property. However it is an offence to plant, or cause Japanese Knotweed to grow, in the wild. All parts of the plant and any soil contaminated with it are classed as controlled waste, so you need to dispose of it carefully to make sure it does not spread. If you are using a contractor to remove the waste for you, they must be registered with us as a waste carrier.

According to the Environmental Protection Act (EPA) 1990 controlled waste, must be disposed of at appropriately licensed landfills. Japanese knotweed plant material and/or any knotweed contaminated soil which you discard, intend to discard or are required to discharge is likely to be classified as controlled waste.
Section 34 of the EPA imposes a duty of care on persons who produce, import, dispose of, or treat controlled wastes. The movement off site of controlled waste must be covered by a waste transfer notes. The transfer notes must be completed and signed, giving a written description of the waste and a waste code. This description must be comprehensive enough to allow the receiver of the waste to handle it in accordance with their own duty of care. These provisions are set up in the Environmental Protection (Duty of Care) Regulations 1991.
Section 33 of the EPA states that it is an offence to deposit, treat, keep or dispose of controlled waste with out a licence.
An offence under the Wildlife and Countryside Act can result in a criminal prosecution. An infringement under the Environmental Protection Act can result in enforcement action being taken by the Environment Agency which can result in an unlimited fine. You can also be held liable for costs incurred from the spread of Knotweed into adjacent properties and for the disposal of infested soil off site during development which later leads to the spread of Knotweed onto another site. As well as the two items of legislation outlined above, third party litigation for damages may be sought by adjacent landowners when Japanese knotweed is allowed to spread onto other property.
Japanese knotweed Law

Slfsfu 31st May 2011 21:54

XV105 - If you really do have Horsetail in the front garden and JK in the rear garden - you're seriously f###ed!!

I think you'll need more than a flamethrower - think thermo nuclear

Linedog 31st May 2011 22:46

I'd send the wife down to glare at it. :ok:

DX Wombat 31st May 2011 23:05

Linedog, I have just very narrowly avoided spraying the keyboard with coffee!
Probie, it's the knotweed that really bothers me.

The late XV105 1st Jun 2011 00:56

XV105 - If you really do have Horsetail in the front garden and JK in the rear garden - you're seriously f###ed!!
Looks like I'm f###ed then!

Green fingered neighbour has confirmed that I do have both the aforementioned pests; Horsetail in the front garden and Japanese Knotweed in the rear one. As mentioned though I do have "reasonable" control of the latter - but none of the former at least until I try what I described.

assasin8 1st Jun 2011 01:22

"Nuke it from orbit... It's the only way to be sure...":ok: (Thread drift alert... name the movie...:p)

Bushfiva 1st Jun 2011 01:29


You could try to get ahold of Aphalara itadori which is the UK's bug of the moment. Is soil steaming a common thing in the UK? Here a big orange machine turns up and stuffs a grid of spikes into the ground.

TBirdFrank 1st Jun 2011 01:56

I can confirm the effectiveness of G-CPTN's remedy for the accursed Japanese Knotweed

We had two stands that we suspect came via the horsey business, both small in stature, but of course any growth of that stuff can spread rapidly.

We initially tried with a broad leaf weedkiller, but over two years the stuff just thrived on it, after an initial die back.

Then we tried a systemic direct into the rhizome after the MCPA die back, and bingo! no more knotweed!

I'm not sure if you need a licence to work on your own property, and strangely enough the offence is the propagation of the stuff and not just the existence of it on any particular property - hence the vast stands on railway and local authority ownerships.

jayteeto 1st Jun 2011 13:00

Bad news, it's definitely horsetail. Weedkiller does work, but you need to read the labels. If it does not claim to specifically kill horsetail, it won't. Trust me on this, I have just spent a year and over 200 worth of various weedkillers. Some previous advice is good, it is 'waterproof' so rubbing or beating it first helps. It spreads underground like wildfire, I ended up COMPLETELY killing everything in the garden and digging 2ft down to get the roots, I filled 2 wheely bins from one small garden. Burning only kills the bit above ground, it is like an iceberg, 90% out of sight. Around our estate it has actually broke through the tarmac on the main road and has caused tarmac 'molehills' everywhere. I believe it is illegal to put it in green waste bins in this country, you need to burn it well. Unless you go at it 200%, it will win!!

Andy H 1st Jun 2011 14:00

You may wish to know that a recent edition of the BBC's Gardener's Question-time touched on Horsetail. The panel's response was "emigrate" !!!

EGGP 1st Jun 2011 17:36

It is marestail and the posters who have said that the waxy coating prevents glyphosate working are correct.

This stuff works but be prepared to take out an overdraft 500ml is about 40. It is nasty stuff to use, so do it on a calm day and wear the appropriate clothing and gloves. You may want to use something like an empty 2 ltr lemonade bottle to limit the spread of the spray.

In the web page are u tube videos that show what happens. How do I know? The allotment site where her indoors has her plot is riddled with the stuff and some of the members have taken the nuclear option shown.

Mods although this is an advert it is the only way of getting rid of this weed although you may be able to find other alternatives.

Add - Farmers use the stuff because marestail is poisonous to horses etc. I beleive local councils use it for parks etc where they get an infestation.

Lon More 1st Jun 2011 17:45

Be careful around pine trees though.

Alternatively ask the USAF to drop b with a couple of A10 loads of napalm - although they'd probably drop it across the road.:(

Danscowpie 1st Jun 2011 19:25

Blooming 'eck, it's only Horse Tail, stop being such a bunch of Girls Blouses:suspect:.

Clear the stone just around the base of the plant and pull it up by hand.
Repeat for any further occurances.

No flame throwers, fannying about with poncy weedkillers, no messing about. Job done.

Mish Nish 1st Jun 2011 19:32

Horsetail doesn't always pull easily by hand, as the bits tend to snap orf.

OP - try and get hold of some high-octane/proof vinegar, and spray with that; it is a VERY effective and safe broad spectrum weed killer.

EGGP 1st Jun 2011 20:20

Clear the stone just around the base of the plant and pull it up by hand.
Repeat for any further occurances.

And all that happens is that the root divides and two plants grow up a week or so later. That's why the gardener's question time team referred to in an earlier post said emigrate.

I understand that 'er indoors allotment did not have the problem until 5 years ago; it is believed that a few tiny fragments of one of the leaves came in when someone ordered manure; now it's spread like wildfire.

Apparently some were found in one on the eygptian tombs dried out for thousands of years, someone put it in water and it sprouted. Mares tail is that persistent. You need systemic weedkiller so that the roots and the Whole plant dies off and then it's no more weed.:ok: If you use the devices to burn weeds off I believe that it will eventually weaken the plant but it is a long process.

Beaver man 1st Jun 2011 20:36


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