An expert gardener explains how to ‘weaken’ weeds that are “almost impossible” to eliminate.
A GARDENING specialist has revealed how to “weaken” horsetail, a perennial weed that she claims is “almost impossible” to eradicate from your garden.
Perennial weeds are difficult to eradicate, especially if they are deeply established or grow between concrete slabs. Horsetail is an aggressive and deeply established perennial weed. If left unchecked, it can quickly spread and suffocate weaker plants.
While removing it is extremely difficult, it is achievable if you continue.
In a video for Gardeners’ World, gardening expert Catherine Mansley of BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine described how to “weaken” the weed.
“Horsetail is difficult to get rid of, and it can take years,” she explained.
“It spreads through underground stems known as rhizomes.
“A single plant has the ability to cover a large area.
“So simply dying off the section of the plant in your garden will have no effect on parts of the plant in neighboring gardens.
“The roots can be two metres deep, making it nearly hard to get them out.
“Light weeding on occasion might actually aggravate the situation because the plant can regrow from any small fragments of plant that are left behind.
“If you crush the weeds first to help the weed killer absorb, you can weaken horsetail with systemic weed killer.
“However, if you want to eradicate it, you’ll have to do it on a regular basis for several years.
“If you don’t want to use weed killer, consistently hoeing and clipping the shoots as soon as they sprout above ground will assist to lessen the infestation.”
Horsetail, also known as mare’s tail, blooms in the spring and summer and can be cut off in the late summer.
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With tree-like stems and vivid green threads, the weed resembles a fern.
In the spring, it isn’t exceptionally tall, but in the summer, it can reach a height of 60cm.
Although the plant prefers moist soil, it can be found in fields, wooded areas, gravely soil, and even gaps and walls.
To get rid of the plant, some gardening professionals advocate burying it with a plastic sheet for one gardening season.
Others recommend using a glyphosate-based weed killer, which will destroy the majority of plants.
If you have horsetail in your lawn, you must mow it on a regular basis in order for it to die off.
The weed does die back throughout the winter, but it will come back in the spring. “Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”