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Railroad weedsIndustrial Vegetation Management

At Solutions Pest and Lawn, we understand that Industrial Vegetation Management plays a crucial role in the safety, appearance and economics of our highways, railroads, utilities and pipelines. Unsightly vegetation and treating it can be a frustrating and costly task especially when invasive and hard-to-control weeds keep re-emerging  That is why we carry in stock an assortment of high quality Industrial Vegetation management products that can help maintenance managers effectively and efficiently take care of problem weeds.

How Industrial Vegetation Management Herbicides Work

Land Management herbicides like the ones we carry help keep weeds from growing on roadsides, energy transportation corridors, industrial sites, storage areas, military installations, pipelines and other service areas to help reduce damage to structures and improve safety to people and wildlife. These herbicides are usually non selective so they will eliminate any and every type of vegetation that it is applied to. One particular herbicide that works really great to treat vegetation in industrial areas is Pramitol.

As always we recommend when using any of these type of herbicides to wear the proper protective equipment: gloves, goggles and a respirator mask.

Browse our wide selection of professional quality industrial vegetation management products below. Should you need any help, we offer expert advice in our online knowledge base which details how to use our various products and we can also help you over the phone with our trained representatives who can guide you through each step of the application process. 

You can also receive recommendations for the best products for your industrial site. Contact us via email at askapro@solutionsstores.com or call (800) 479-6583 for assistance with your order.

Learn More About Industrial Vegetation Management Railroad weeds

Industrial areas and rights of way are vital for the proper functioning of an industrialized society and include federal, state, county and township highways and roads, public airports, railroads, electric utilities (including substations, switching stations, transmission lines and distribution lines), pipelines (including pumping stations), public surface drainageways, public irrigation waterways, banks of public bargeways and areas around locks and dams, bicycle, bridle and other public paths or trails (outside established recreational areas).


Industrial rights of way can be found everywhere and exist in every type of terrain, soil, climate, vegetation complex and land-use area. Vegetation management on these industrial areas is a necessary task to be done for a variety of reasons, such as aesthetics and safety. Industrial vegetation management address the following issues:


  • • Public safety by improving visibility on transportation rights-of-way

  • • reduced fire hazard by eliminating plants which are prone to catching fire

  • • soil erosion control

  • • assured continuity of utility services

  • • promotion of the health and comfort of the public,

  • • ornamental values enhanced by control of nuisance vegetation.


Industrial areas typically must be kept clear of the development of excessive amounts of brush or trees—in other words, they should be maintained at an early stage of plant development so they don’t grow (literally and figuratively) to become a problem.


If routine monitoring and eliminating of developing vegetation is ignored, it can lead to the growth of hard to control woody plants that can be both an eyesore and a safety hazard depending on where they are growing and how much.


When conducting industrial vegetation management, the approach depends on a number of factors such as familiarizing yourself with the weeds that are growing. Any weed that grows on an industrial site is regarded as an undesirable plant because of the following factors:


• the plant growing in an area is creating a safety hazard or nuisance

• the plant is interfering with or hindering the normal operation or functional activities on the industrial site or right-of way

• the plant or vegetation is considered a “noxious,” weed

• Hinder the growth of desirable plants in an area

• causes damage to industrial structures, such as road surfaces, railroad ballast, utility wire poles or supports, and pipelines and pumping stations,
• The vegetation attracts or becomes a habitat for unwanted wildlife

• Can become detrimental to crops and cropland if it begins to spread

Industrial vegetation management is necessary and in most cases imperative; but since most industrial structures like rights-of-way are long and narrow, they can often fall under the property lines of many landowners.


Neighbor conflicts may become an even larger problem especially if industrial vegetation management efforts are not contained within the boundaries or industrial sites. Public relations problems between industrial sites and their neighbors can be mitigated when the public is informed of the vegetation management needs of an area and properly communicated to.


Looking for Control Methods For A Residential Area? Check Out Our Lawn Care Category!


vegetation managementWhat is the Goal of Industrial Vegetation Management?

The primary goal of industrial vegetation management is to ensure the protection, operation, stability, continuance and safety of an industrial site and the people who work in or on that industrial site. Other goals of a well-planned industrial vegetation management program may also include:

• naturalizing a right of way or site using indigenous plants, where possible, to make the right-of-way blend in with the surrounding landscape,
• reduce maintenance costs
• reduce erosion or water quality problems
• provide feed or shelter for wildlife


READ MORE: Learn Why Roundup Is A Great Product For Industrial Vegetation Management

Planning a Industrial Vegetation Management Program

Effective industrial vegetation management requires a well-thought-out plan which meets the laid out goals and objectives into a reasonable, practical and easy to execute program. The best plan is one which reaches said goals while being environmentally friendly and not overly expensive.


A properly planned and executed industrial vegetation management program will may need to enlist a variety of industrial vegetation control techniques and strategies that will be determined via the budget available, the weed or vegetation which is growing and taking the terrain into account as well and the surrounding public which may live in close proximity to the industrial site.


The program should have options for alternative management methods, such as mechanical and manual control where it would be wise or safer to do so. By approaching industrial vegetation management with tact, good planning and better execution you may see the following benefits:


• increased public acceptance of the industrial site or facility
• fewer complaints about the industrial site
• reduced maintenance cost

• decreased damage to facilities and structures

• fewer interruptions in normal operations

• increased safety to the environment, workers and surrounding people
• improved public relations and less legal difficulty with public action groups and industrial area neighbors

• reduced erosion and water pollution

• improved cost planning and control

• better utilization of equipment and reduced workload fluctuation.


industrial veg management

Analyzing Various Industrial Sites Which Need Weed Management

Before proceeding with industrial vegetation management and gathering the right herbicides for weed control, it’s important to analyze that industrial area which needs to be addressed for its weed problem. One common industrial area that encounters weed troubles are rights-of-way.


Rights-of-way are basically composed of a series of narrow strips of land that are used for different types of transportation. For example, electric utility rights-of-way vary in width from 30 feet to 200 feet and have been set aside for the erection of poles, towers and electrical conductors necessary for carrying electrical current to utilization points— that is, from the point of electrical generation to the individual customer’s premises.


Electrical distribution lines are often virtually surrounded by vegetation, and thus efforts should be made to clear vegetation to eliminate power outages. Sometimes mature trees that pose a dangerous threat to electrical facilities must be completely removed.


Other rights of way like highways and railroads also find it necessary to completely eliminate any vegetation which grows along the roadbed.


DON’T FORGET! : Make Sure You’re Equipped With The Proper Personal Protective Equipment!

Using Herbicides For Industrial Vegetation Management

The equipment used to apply herbicides for vegetation management on industrial areas come in two main types—that for ground application and that for aerial spray. Ground applications may include foliar spray treatment, basal bark treatment, stump treatment, tree injection and soil treatment with pellets. Airborne equipment are those where the herbicide is carried and then applied via helicopter


herbicide sprayingGround Application Methods


Herbicides can be used as a foliar spray at either a high or low volume. These can be applied either using a hand sprayer, a backpack sprayer or a truck-mounted spraying rig where the herbicide is mixed according to the label with water and applied at a specific pressure and rate per acre.


For best results, herbicides used in foliar treatments must be applied to the point of runoff in a sufficient volume of water to ensure sufficient coverage.


Another method of control is known as basal bark treatment. Basal bark treatment consists of a thorough coverage of the lower 18 inches of the stem and the root crowns of a woody plant. Herbicides mixed with oil are used for basal treatment. Basal treatment can be done at any time of the year; if done during the dormant season, less damage will result to susceptible crops nearby.


Stump treatments or cut stump treatments is another type of treatment method used to kill off trees that are unwanted. For the most possible success, stumps should be treated with a herbicide immediately after cutting, before the tissue hardens and dries around the cut.


Granule herbicides which typically come in pellet formulations can be applied in very small amounts by hand broadcasting or specific placement around the stems of unwanted shrubs or brush.


Environmental Factors Which Affect Herbicide Effectiveness


Results may vary when it comes to spraying herbicides for industrial vegetation management. There may be a number of factors which can hinder the effectiveness of a herbicide application such as improper application (for example, selecting the wrong herbicide which isn’t meant for your targeted plant, poor equipment, incorrect calibration, lack of agitation or inferior product). As you can see, many of these issues can be easily prevented or corrected by the applicator.


On the other hand, there are some factors where the effectiveness (or lack thereof) obtained from herbicides is due to circumstances over which you may have no control, such as environmental conditions, variation of soils and differences in susceptibility of various plant species.


Before considering the effect of environmental factors on the performance of herbicides, it is essential to consider how the herbicide is applied. As we’ve noted earlier, herbicides may be applied as soil, foliage, stump or basal bark treatments. The influence of a given environmental factor may be quite different, depending on the type of application.


Environmental conditions have very little effect on stump or basal bark treatments. However, environmental conditions may have a considerable effect on soil and foliage applications.


Soil-applied Herbicides


For the most part, rainfall (soil moisture) and temperature are two environmental factors that most influence the performance of soil-applied herbicides. Rainfall is as important for chemical weed control as it is for plant growth.


Herbicides applied to the soil surface must be moved into the root zone of the plants to be controlled by rainfall soon after the application is made. Herbicides generally do not perform as well during periods of drought as they do when adequate moisture is present.


The amount of rainfall necessary to move a herbicide depends on its water solubility. For example, herbicide active ingredient picloram is considered to be highly water soluble; thus, it has a higher potential to move in soil with water compared to many other herbicides.


It is important to remember that leaching of water-soluble herbicides is greatest under heavy rain that falls in a short period of time. Excessive movement of herbicide in the soil may cause injury to desirable plants close to the industrial sites that have been treated. The influence of rainfall on the efficacy of herbicides is interrelated with additional environmental factors, as well as soil texture and soil structure.


Temperature influences the performance of soil-applied herbicides by affecting chemical reactions in the soil, microbial activity and plant growth processes. Herbicides break down in the soil more rapidly at high temperatures; therefore, herbicides are less persistent under these conditions.


Temperature has a profound effect on the absorption, translocation and metabolism of soil-applied herbicides by plants. Other factors being constant, the effects of these processes increase with increasing temperatures within a range conducive to plant growth. The interrelationships of these processes among themselves and with other factors often determine the toxicity and selectivity of the herbicide, but these interrelationships are too complex to be discussed here.


However, it should be noted that herbicides usually perform best under temperatures at which plants grow rapidly. Under conditions of extremely high or low temperatures, the toxicity and selectivity may be altered dramatically due to the influence of temperature on these physiological processes.


Foliarly-applied Herbicidesfoliarly applied herbicides


Environmental issues may very well have a greater effect on the effectiveness of foliarly-applied herbicides than on that of soil-applied herbicides.  Rapidly growing succulent plants are generally more susceptible to post-emergence herbicide treatments than are plants in any other condition.


In order for a herbicide applied to the foliage to be effective, it must be absorbed into the plant through the cuticle of the leaf. Plants grown under drought stress develop a thicker cuticle than those grown under more favorable conditions. This thicker cuticle limits absorption of the herbicide. The translocation of systemic herbicides may also be limited in plants grown under such drought stressed conditions.


Foliarly-applied herbicides usually perform best when applied during a period of high relative humidity, which greatly enhances foliage absorption by delaying drying of spray droplets and hydrating the cuticle, making it more permeable.


High relative humidity may also enhance translocation of systemic herbicides. Very light rainfall, such as a drizzle, dew or fog, increases absorption and effectiveness by remoistening the dry herbicide on the leaf surface.


However, heavy rainfall shortly after application may wash the herbicide off the plant. The amount of the herbicide washed from the plant will depend on the quantity of precipitation, the rate of herbicide application, the chemical characteristics of the herbicide and the use of an additive.


Water-soluble herbicides such as salt formulations of 2,4-D are washed off more easily than oil-soluble herbicides such as ester formulations of 2,4-D. In addition to the effect of temperature on the plant’s physiological processes, temperature also influences foliar absorption of herbicides.


Plants grown under high temperature frequently develop a thicker cuticle which restricts herbicide absorption. Due to the interaction of these physiological processes, the effect of the temperature at the time of application on herbicide performance depends on the herbicide being applied.


In general, best results can be expected from foliar herbicides applied during warm weather to actively growing plants and followed by a period of several hours with no rainfall.


Sunlight is an additional environmental factor that influences the performance of many soil and foliarly-applied herbicides. It is essential for the activity of certain herbicides, but it is seldom a limiting factor in their performance.


Additional Resources:




Training Manual for Right-of-Way Vegetation Management University of KY

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