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Knotweed Control

How to Get Rid of Knotweed

We here at Solutions Pest and Lawn are huge, HUGE fans of knotweed....KNOT! Truthfully, we can’t stand knotweed and neither can any of our customers who have complained about knotweed and have asked us for tips on how to control such a pesky and difficult-to control weed. Knotweed originated from Europe and has firmly established itself now in the States, creeping up everywhere--field crops, row crops, orchards, yards, gardens and turf. So just how do we get rid of this blasted weed? We have just the guide for you below on identifying knotweed and the best methods of controlling knotweed..

Knotweed Background Information

Not to be confused with Japanese knotweed, common knotweed can either be an annual or short-lived perennial plant which grows from a central taproot to spread its slender stems outward in a dense mat of wiry stems which are broken by small joints or knots. Those stems are covered with small, blue-green leaves growing alternately from base to tip. Knotweeds have small flowers which are small and inconspicuous, borne from the upper leaf axils. The colors of the flowers range from white to green, and they may have a pinkish tinge. Knotweed is often confused with spotted spurge due to it’s appearance but unlike spurge, knotweed doesn’t have a milky sap exude from it when broken.

There are two common knotweed types: Common knotweed (also called prostrate knotweed), or Polygonum arenastrum, which also goes by the names of wiregrass, wireweed, matweed or doorweed. This type grows flat and spreads outward in a dense circular form that can reach 18 inches across with a narrow taproot that can grow as deep. It rarely reaches more than a few inches tall.

Knotweed stand out from more of the common weed types because it prefers dry, compacted soil. It is found in areas of the lawn that see the greatest foot traffic, like roadsides, sports fields, vacant lots, gravel parking areas, between stones and growing in the cracks of sidewalks and driveways. It is also found in lawns and turf that have been under stress from the environment

For more information on controlling knotweed on your lawn and to get advice catered to your unique issue from experts, contact us at askapro@solutionsstores.com or call our customer service line at (800) 479-6583.

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How To Control Knotweed

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Controlling knotweed doesn’t just mean spraying some herbicide here and there and that it--this will involve a change in lawn maintenance habits to make for a healthier lawn where knotweed will be less likely to grow. This would be achieved best by aerating your lawn and making sure the soil is
well fertilized. Implementing these sort of maintenance options in your routine will make knotweed and many other weeds unable to compete.

Recommended Pre-emergent Options

If it isn’t too late to apple pre-emergent, the above solutions work best to control knotweed. Knotweed is an annual that germinates in late February or early March, so the best time to apply these pre-emergent herbicides should be in the late fall. However, if it is too late and the knotweed is out and about, you should use a post-emergent herbicide instead.

Recommended Post-emergent Options

When using any of the above post-emergent herbicides it’s best to apply them when the knotweed is fairly young for more effective control. Common knotweed seed germinates in the heavy rains of spring. Its long taproot helps it survive the dry heat of summer.
A more mature knotweed may be more resistant to herbicides and thus it may take repeated applications for the weed to be eradicated.

Knotweed Tips and Recommendations

  • Granular treatments that prevent seeds from germinating will help stop most weed growth, but once the seed sprouts, spot treatment sprays are most effective.

  • Use a hand-pump sprayer with a thin tip nozzle. Spraying a fine mist is best when applying herbicides to ground ivy.

  • When applying herbicides be sure to wear protective clothing or safety equipment that completely covers your arms and legs, as well as gloves, socks and shoes. Avoid inhaling the spray or getting it in your eyes or mouth. 

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