Wall to wall Canadian Thistle - help!

Dirtdoctor

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Hi all,

I almost forgot about this forum, but the nice reminders jogged the memory,

As for double digging, in a page or so of information, it is impossible to cover every type of soil in the globe, specially with the internet some folks have clayey soils others have loam and yet others have calache. SO, double digging is great if you take into consideration, soil types, drainage and ammending the sub-soil.

Using a small excavator, they have tracks,, Low Ground pressure.. we run them littleones over all sorts of soils, obviously you wouldnt run it in muddy soils were compaction would be worsened, BUT simply put they have a very light footprint, and we have taken BRICK hard soil, and turned plots into the garden of eden. Double digging and ammending. (lots of ammending)


Getting Back to the round up conversation. I am not a proponent of poison.
BUT if you dont have the patience, or time or ability to pull and pull and pull, then i would recommend using the proper application of a Round up type of herbicide. I have witnessed plots that had just a few star thistle, in a couple seasons become unwalkable. The home owner refused to use poisons, and with out the time or effort, their yard was over run. SO my recommending round up isnt totally out of place. IT will work if you use it properly.

MY farm is organic.. and my orchards and ground crops are organic. But i have been ammending the soils for 10 years at 20 - 30 tons per acre

I can afford those amounts because i haul and deal with compost, and manures. IF for some reason i had a infestation of Star thistle, and wasnt able to keep on top of it.. I am danged sure all my farming neighbors would want me to spray it to prevent it from damaging their fields. Nuff said,

Remember any high acid spray will also help weaken Star thistle, and the acid is good for the soils, at least in our area CAlifornia most of the water takes soil from Acid to alkaline so adding anythign acid isnt damaging.

Boil down vinegar to increase its acidity.. apply in a spray and it will weaken sprouting weeds. As i mentioned in the other posting, weakening star thistle at any and every time possible is the way to go.

In 1979 a 20 acre parcel had a 50 x 50 foot corner of star thistle, (next to a horse stable) By 1981 the whole 20 acres was covered. IT spreads like wild fire. Control measures were started in 1981. The fields were burned twice per year. By 1983, fields across the highway were covered, and it became a serious mess for the farmers. Burning seemed to get the most of it, But year after year of burning, and when the sprouts were forming we used a spike harrow to pull out the weeds.. 1985-6, Control had been successful, BUT the horse stable was the instigator, and star thistle lined the acres of wild land along the highway.

It spreads so fast and is such a damaging economic mennace often times poison is utilized to minimize the nasty spread.

Jack
 

seedcorn

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2-4D is best solution. Don't want it to hit the ground......get a pair of rubber gloves and sponge. Wet the sponge in 2-4D, then swipe it on the plant. When the plant dies, pull it out of the ground. Then you can say you never sprayed any chemical on your soil.

Any type of tillage will spread the roots starting more little plants.
 

adoptedbyachicken

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If you choose to use Round up take a hand trigger sprayer and just do one leaf. I moved into this place and had lots of it. Been here 3 years and I have to hunt for it now. There is no reason to spray bomb that chemical heavy like they say, and kill everything in a 10 foot circle. It will take longer to kill the plant out but be patient it will work. I used to take it for an afternoon walk once a week and just wander about the 46 acres. By a week I could tell the plants that had been sprayed, they looked very unwell, but it was a couple more weeks before they were dry dead. I never cleaned them up, just left them. My first mistake was to try and yank them out half dead, those ones often regrew so the root was not dead I guess.

If you get them tender in the spring pickling vinigar with soap works wonders but the round up can be used all year. Instead of a huge battle of wills and hard work controling them has become a nice walk around the place once a week for me, I almost look forward to it.

BTW if I see the round up beading on the leaf in the heat or dusty part of the summer I add soap to it as well, so the tension is gone and it soaks in. I usually use Shaklee basic H but Dawn or such should do as well.
 

rockytopsis

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Wow there was a lot of reading here and very interesting, I do hope we never get that stuff in Tennessee, but a map I found while doing a search shows it in North Carolina.

I did find this link which may or may not be useful to you, it does have some things to say about natural control as well as chemical.


http://www.attra.org/attra-pub/thistlecontrol.html#mech_control

Nancy
 

Sylvie

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It can spread from thistle birdseed that folks put in feeders for finches in most any state. That's how I ignorantly seeded mine :he
 
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