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Author Topic: Rosette (flat) thistle control... And ID help? New pics  (Read 4144 times)

FiB

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Bala, North Wales
    • Facebook
Rosette (flat) thistle control... And ID help? New pics
« on: May 02, 2014, 08:15:25 pm »
Tried grazon last year, no effect (spear thistles no prob , scythe them just before go to seed and gradually reducing ).... Seem to be back triple fold this year. Farmers merchant says  grazon no good, what I want is thistle ex (same farmers merch that sold me grazon last year ;) ) it's 70 for 3 litres which does 5 acres..... I HATE using herbicides... We have bees...... But these rosette thistles are taking over ( I have lots of margins wher I let anything grow for pollinators ). Not a prob on hay fields, just this one hill filed where we had pigs and then Reseeded, but at this rate there will be no grazing, just flat thistles.... And I need it for weaning sheep... Help! Any advice experience great fully received xxxx
« Last Edit: May 04, 2014, 01:51:28 pm by FiB »

spandit

  • Moderator
  • Joined Mar 2013
  • East Sussex
    • Sussex Forest Garden
Re: Rosette (flat) thistle control...
« Reply #1 on: May 03, 2014, 12:14:05 am »
I've been attacking weeds with a machete today - can you not just cut the leaves off so they'll reduce like the spears?

I'm hoping I've made a difference with the docks and bracken
sussexforestgarden.blogspot.co.uk

henchard

  • Joined Dec 2010
  • Carmarthenshire
    • Two Retirees Start a New Life in Wales
    • Facebook
Re: Rosette (flat) thistle control...
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2014, 08:55:46 am »
I've gradually been reducing the thistles out of some pasture and have the rosette ones as well. Have used a number of techniques including using a two pronged fork to pull them out 'roots and all' after very wet weather when they come out easy. I also find that spot spraying with a knapsack and Roundup works well but leaves a dead patch of grass for a year and looks unsightly.

So this year I'm trying mixing up the Roundup in a bucket to the usual strength then adding wallpaper paste. I then go round painting it on the rosettes with a brush so that I can target it more accurately than spot spraying. It is also much easier to see which ones you have treated (you can also add food dye to colour it to make it more obvious). Ask me in 6 months how well it works!

shygirl

  • Joined May 2013
Re: Rosette (flat) thistle control...
« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2014, 08:58:54 am »
we attack them with the strimmer (we have a metal blade in ours) making sure they are beaten right down to ground level. we usually do it twice so they dont flower and there are less each year.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Rosette (flat) thistle control...
« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2014, 09:15:06 am »
I'm a bit confused as to which type of thistle is the problem.  Spear thistles are the tall 'Scotch thistle' things with very large flower heads which spread by seed dispersal and grow up from a single rosette; creeping thistle is the kind with much smaller leaves and flowers which spreads everywhere by root spread as well as seed.

For the single tall spear thistles, you're best to wait until the flower stem is well up, then dig the whole plant up and burn it.  The seed heads will continue to ripen and disperse if you leave them lying in a pile.  It takes several diligent years of removal, including that secretive plant which manages to miss your attention because it's hiding behind the barn.  If you try to remove the plant before it's developed the flower head then it tends to send up three to replace the one.  Best to let the plant expend its energy on producing the flower stalk and bud, but not to open the flower, before chopping it.  We have controlled 9 acres with this method and now have only the occasional one popping up.  Too labour intensive for a larger area.

For creeping thistle, frequent mowing throughout the season will gradually wear it out, using a topper or even a lawn mower if the area is small. 
Sheep will happily graze both types of thistle, and song birds love the seed (same as niger seed which people spend a lot on importing for gold finches  ::) )

There's also water thistle (Cirsum rivulare I think it's called) which has a deeper purple but smallish flower head.  I think they are pretty much the same as spear thistles and spread by blown seed.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2014, 09:21:43 am by Fleecewife »
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

FiB

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Bala, North Wales
    • Facebook
Re: Rosette (flat) thistle control...
« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2014, 12:41:40 pm »
Ok I think I may have had my thistles mixed up... Here are some pics....


Pic 1 is what I have called rosette thistle ... It is really flat and so hard to scythe (last year).... Pic 2 sends up one tall spear in year 1 (hence I though that was a spear thistle, and have been merrily scything for the last 2 years once flower sent up.... But now think this may be creeping, which is why it's gone bananas this year. The big flat hairy ones are the ones that grazon didn't touch and look like they are getting ready to send up flowers this year......

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Rosette (flat) thistle control... And ID help? New pics
« Reply #6 on: May 04, 2014, 02:53:26 pm »

Top one is Cirsum Rivulare I believe, spreads by seed but should respond the same as spear thistle.

Second pic is creeping thistle - needs spraying or repeatedly cutting low (why we used a lawn mower for a closer cut, plus it picks up the bits which otherwise contaminate fleece)
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

FiB

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Bala, North Wales
    • Facebook
Re: Rosette (flat) thistle control... And ID help? New pics
« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2014, 05:18:44 pm »
Thank you so much...  Can crack on now I've got that straight.    :thumbsup: Have flipped out and burnt about 50 this pm... Only a few hundred to go

jaykay

  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Cumbria/N Yorks border
Re: Rosette (flat) thistle control... And ID help? New pics
« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2014, 06:40:43 pm »
I had some success (over a small area) with Roundup in a backpack sprayer, squirted into the centre of the rosette thistles.

midtown

  • Joined Oct 2013
  • English Lake District
Re: Rosette (flat) thistle control... And ID help? New pics
« Reply #9 on: May 04, 2014, 11:09:05 pm »
Chop 'em with a brushcutter to a couple of inches, then spot app glyphosate 360 or 450.
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