“The philosopher who said that work well done never needs doing over never weeded a garden.” – Ray D. Everson
It’s true that getting rid of weeds and unwanted, non-native plants is a serious chore. Invasive species ruin habitats and food sources for native insects, birds and other wildlife, as well as cause a significant amount of lost dollars each year in damage and control. But with proper care and knowledge, you can ensure that you’re planting and maintaining only the good, healthy plants. Here are the basic steps to removing invasive plants.
Find out what’s invasive in your area The Minnesota Wildflowers organization has a comprehensive list of invasive plants in Minnesota. With a little bit of research for your local area, you can find out who the plant bad guys are.
Remove the invasive plants on your property Once you’ve identified the invasive plants on your property, there are three methods to controlling them – mechanical, chemical and biological. Mechanical control means physically removing the plants by cutting or pulling. Chemical control uses herbicides to kill plants and inhibit regrowth. The recommended technique and chemicals used will vary depending on the species. Biological controls use plant diseases or insect predators, usually from the targeted species’ home range. For basic invasive plants, you’ll probably use mechanical and chemical controls for removal. To remove larger, woody stems use a tool such as a Weed Wrench, Root Jack or Root Talon. It’s best to do this in the spring or early summer when soils are softer. Herbicides are among the most effective to treat invasive species. You’ll find a variety of products available in your local hardware store. Remember to read the labels and follow directions precisely for the safety of the environment and yourself.
Use only non-invasive plants when landscaping your property Now that you’ve cleared out the bad weeds and plants, it’s time reimagine your garden and landscaping. Be sure to only include non-invasive plants as you plan your new space.
Need help removing those pesky invasive plants? Leave it to the experts – contact Ostvig Tree Care.