Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: weed control  (Read 3330 times)

wales01man

  • Joined Sep 2010
weed control
« on: May 12, 2012, 09:57:25 pm »
Hi everone,
I have a post on the poultry forum and I'm more than pleased with the replies so i have decided to post on here hoping for same response.
My problem
We have an allotment hard work but hopefully rewarding,the biggest problem we have is weed control so I'm asking if anyone has any advice on how we can control the weeds with something organic which we can produce ourselves i remember reading somewhere of something that does the job.
thanks for reading this

doganjo

  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Clackmannanshire
  • Qui? Moi?
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    • Facebook
Re: weed control
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2012, 10:03:53 pm »
I've got vinegar here I'm about to try. Will let you know if it works.
Always have been, always will be, a WYSIWYG - black is black, white is white - no grey in my life! But I'm mellowing in my old age

VSS

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Pen Llyn
    • Viable Self Sufficiency.co.uk
Re: weed control
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2012, 10:25:10 pm »
Are there any weeds you have a particular problem with?
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Mammyshaz

  • Joined Feb 2012
  • Durham
Re: weed control
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2012, 10:38:35 pm »
Having allotments and wanting natural predators we find the only thorough method is to dig the horrors out. We have eradicated horsetail even with success, despite being widespread in other patches. It does take a couple of years to be totally free tho.
Used a weedkiller once from neighbours once when council told us that all patches needed deweeded, to find dead bees and birds the following week.
Will never use again!

deepinthewoods

  • Guest
Re: weed control
« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2012, 11:13:28 pm »
the best way is to do it all by hand, then you can get to all the roots. but there is a case for using weedkiller when you need to regain control. glyphosate is often recommended cos you can replant soon after. then use the hoe to keep weed seedlings down.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: weed control
« Reply #5 on: May 13, 2012, 12:08:59 am »
I have never used weedkiller and never intend to.

I don't think there is a magic one-stop-shop organic product which will rid you of weeds - if there was we would all be using it and the big chemical companies would be out of business.

Digging out all the roots of persistant weeds is a good start but is extremely hard work and takes ages - and while you are digging one end of the plot, new weeds are shooting up at the other end and soon they have got away from you.
First off - don't have grass paths as these are just weed reservoirs waiting to invade your beds.  Dig off the turf and replace with something like thick gravel or bark chips on top of a weed suppressing layer.

Your potato patch will help you to deal with weeds in that area simply by the amount of earthing up you have to do until the foliage shades out the weeds, then when you dig up the crop you weed again. After that though you need to do something until the next crop goes in.
One of the most successful tools in the organic armoury against weeds is mulch.  Mulch comes in all shapes and forms and you can use different mulches in different situations.  For example once the potatoes are dug, cover the soil with straw, or thick cardboard or a purchased weed suppressing fabric until you are ready to plant the next crop.  In fact a combination of all three mulch types will kill off weeds in undug ground and make it plantable within a few months.  We prepare our next years potato patch by covering a weedy area with thick manure, then thick cardboard (such as computers and washing machines come in) then finally an old tarpauline, all held down with bricks or stobs.  In the spring all we have to do is take off the tarp and plant the potatoes into the wonderfully soft and fertile soil beneath.
I now use weed suppressing fabric for planting most of my veg, although it doesn't work easily for things such as carrots, parsnips and beetroot.  The drawback of weed suppressing fabric is that it is manufactured using petrochemicals and is fairly expensive.  Thick cardboard will work as well and has the advantage that by the end of the season it has rotted down and contributes to the fertility of the soil.

Hoeing between your plants is the traditional way to keep the weeds down, but if you live in a wet area as I do then hoeing simply doesn't work, except on the rare occasions the soil dries out.  But if you are in a dry area then hoeing will keep down the annual weeds.
For weeds such as thistle and dock, there is no escape from digging them out whenever one pokes through the soil - they have a huge seed reservoir in your soil, and also grow from tiny pieces of root, so don't expect to eradicate them in a year or two.
« Last Edit: May 13, 2012, 12:15:15 am by Fleecewife »
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Odin

  • Joined Oct 2011
  • Huddersfield
Re: weed control
« Reply #6 on: May 13, 2012, 08:14:54 pm »
See my post in "Equipment" on the Lazy Dog tool. I do all my weeding by hand and always have done but I break forks for fun and tire myself out. Just got a lazy dog, not had chance to break it yet but for me it works quick and with much less effort.
A man who cannot till the soil cannot till his own soul !
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Plantoid

  • Joined May 2011
  • Yorkshireman on a hill in wet South Wales
Re: weed control
« Reply #7 on: May 13, 2012, 10:13:09 pm »
Hi everone,
I have a post on the poultry forum and I'm more than pleased with the replies so i have decided to post on here hoping for same response.
My problem
We have an allotment hard work but hopefully rewarding,the biggest problem we have is weed control so I'm asking if anyone has any advice on how we can control the weeds with something organic which we can produce ourselves i remember reading somewhere of something that does the job.
thanks for reading this

Can you put chickens  on the lotty in a small confined space or are they likely to get nicked .. they will eat almost everything green , once a patch is clear dig it well to bring the subsurface weed seeds and roots  to the surface , leave it for the weed to come up put the chooks back and dig over where they were . do this several times , for each area to get rid of the weeds and get some free manure into the bargain.

 You have said something you can do/ make  yourself.. difficult for an effective solution that's for sure.

There is a product it may even be organic that makes the  soil very rich in nitrogen  , the weeds over dose on it  , out grow themselves to the point of death .. a bit like a decent masive heart attack from eating too much fatty food.

After six weeks the product  turns into SULPHATE OF AMMONIA  and washes out the soil . As far as i've researched ..... it is not toxic or harmful but I suppose it you ask enough people someone will feel honour bound to say " No don't use it " . ;)

It has not been passed for useas a week killer for no one has decided to pay the masssive sums of money for this cheap readiily available chemical to be tested and approved or declined .

 It is good for all weeds including horsetail  ( equisetum ) and horseradish .. any awkward root clumps left after the initial application should be retreated again but with  more of it up to a quart per yard square once an inch or so of regrowth has started ..

Normal application is on pound in one gallon to treat 10 foot by ten foot once. Use spring to summer and not after September the first , as growth activity slows down in nature & the stuff will be a wasted application .
 
It has been used since well before the 1960's  to my to my knowledge still is by all sorts of professional growers and farmers etc.

 It is called  AMMONIUM SULPHAMATE in the UK and is avaliable on ebay by the sackful fairly cheaply.
I learnt of it from a gamekeeper where it is  in use on the very large estate he looks after..
 To find out more go into Wikkipedia and look up Ammonium sulfamate .....there is a fair bit to read.
« Last Edit: May 13, 2012, 11:18:44 pm by Plantoid »
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