To permanently get rid of Japanese knotweed is not an easy task as the process necessitates one to have patience, and the application of multi-pronged methods to achieve full eradication of this highly invasive weed plant.

Owing to the rampant growth synonymous with the Japanese knotweed, successful removal is a difficult exercise, but it is achievable if one takes the right measures that have been tried, tested, and proved to work by experts across the board.

Consequently, this article’s subsequent segment will highlight the ways and means that an individual can put into use to permanently get rid of Japanese Knotweed.

Physical removal

First and foremost, take note that Japanese knotweed can grow to a height of 10 feet tall with the roots extending to nearly twice the same length, this imposing nature of the plant can become a menace if left unattended hence the need for physical removal, which can be achieved by:

  1. Cutting down and removing the Japanese knotweed canes, individuals are encouraged to use very sharp objects such as pruning shears which are basically specialized scissors for use on plants. When cutting, one must ensure that the process happens as close to the ground as possible. The next phase will be to ensure that all the cut pieces of the weed and fragments are completely cleared from the area to prevent any fresh growth. 
  2. Constant pruning/mowing – Albeit similar to cutting, mowing involves the use of tools to constantly prune the Japanese knotweed to small pieces now and then to control the growth levels. For mowing to effectively work, it has to be done every 7 days. The constant cutting impedes the quick growth of the weed plant. However, experts assert that mowing on its own may not eradicate the Japanese knotweed in its entirety, therefore; this method ought to be applied alongside other methods such as the use of commercial herbicides.
  3. Excavation of the Japanese knotweed – basically, this method involves the reliance on heavy machines that will help dig out the Japanese knotweed from the ground and its supplementary roots. Experts view excavation as a quick and effective way of Japanese knotweed removal; however, this method comes with its fair share of challenges; for instance, it is deemed expensive since one will need to hire or purchase the excavation machines where necessary. Additionally, excavation may lead to greater damages to the property or one’s yard because of the heavy digging involved. Finally, because machines often lack human precision, it is common to find that not all the plant fragments have been fully excavated, which poses a danger of the re-growth of the Japanese knotweed within the same area.
Learn how to permanently get rid of Japanese knotweed before it spreads uncontrollably
Learn how to permanently get rid of Japanese knotweed before it spreads uncontrollably

Use of herbicides/weed killers

The use of herbicides to permanently get rid of Japanese knotweed from your property is not only an affordable approach but also one that guarantees the best results if done properly. The recommendable herbicides for Japanese knotweed are those that contain glyphosate concentrate. This herbicide being non-restrictive means that any person can buy and use it. However, herbicides should never be used in a reckless manner hence; the following measures should be followed to the latter to permanently get rid of Japanese knotweed:

  1. Read and follow the instructions for usage – do not just assume you know how to use the herbicide at hand. Familiarize yourself with the ‘rulebook’ of herbicide manufacturers on how to effectively apply the chemical.
  2. Use the approved per cent active ingredient or in other words the correct dosage – using a less amount than the one described can only have a limited effect on the plant whereas using an excessive amount of the herbicide can only damage part of the plant and, thus not get the desired results. 
  3. Protective gear – always wear your gloves and protective mask when applying any herbicide.
  4. Due diligence – herbicides should never be used near water bodies as they may lead to contamination of the water. Take all the necessary steps to protect such parts before embarking on spraying the herbicide.
  5. Application method – this can either be direct spray to the weed plant or in some cases injection into the stem of the plant depending on the treatment plan guidelines.
  6. Duration time – one must wait for at least 7 days for the herbicides to target the root of the weed plant and destroy it before embarking on pulling the dead material. However, if you suspect that there is still the presence of the weed plant in an area that has been subjected to treatment; you can do another application until you permanently get rid of Japanese knotweed. 
Need to permanently get rid of Japanese knotweed is essential to reduce its spread and inevitable damage to property
Need to permanently get rid of Japanese knotweed is essential to reduce its spread and inevitable damage to property

Burning and burying

The waste remains of the cut and dug-out Japanese knotweed can still grow when left unattended. This makes it vital that the disposal of such remains becomes a necessity to permanently get rid of Japanese knotweed.

Disposal by way of burning involves the use of incineration equipment that will subject the remains to very hot temperatures such that nothing survives the process.

Experts advise that incineration should not be done in an open space as this may lead to emissions and worst-case scenario the remains may be blown away by the wind when not fully burned hence risking the possible risk of growth elsewhere.

The burnt remains must also be transported to an authorized land site that is licensed for final disposal.

Burying, on the other hand, can either be done in the area of removal of the weed plant; the reason being to avoid the possibility of transferring rhizomes to a different place and invoking a fresh growth or in a site that is approved for such a purpose.

The most important thing to note is that any waste material from the weed plant to be buried must never be mixed with any domestic waste as this may invoke fresh growth of the Japanese knotweed.

Secondly, the waste that remains to be buried must be put inside containers or plastic material that can be completely sealed. There should not be any room for escape if the rhizomes of the cut weed plants grow.

Contaminated area sealed off whilst Japanese knotweed treatment is underway
The contaminated area is sealed off whilst Japanese knotweed treatment is underway

Want to know more about how to permanently get rid of Japanese knotweed?

Knotweed Removal aims to provide the most up-to-date information, help and advice for YOU to make informed decisions. If you are unsure or uncertain about how to proceed, please reach out to us and we will gladly come back and advise you as best we can.

Governmental advice can be found here and the UK law covering the removal of Japanese Knotweed as stated under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 can be found here.

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Do not forget we have a library of blogs covering many areas relevant to Japanese Knotweed, our free downloadable How-to Guides and Product Reviews on the latest methods being employed to eradicate or remove Japanese Knotweed.

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