August 25, 2010

Russian thistle, anyone?

Oh, you'd like more? No problemo, we have 3 more piles like this one. Not quite as big, but sizable anyway.

It's what rain does: it makes plants grow. Good and bad. I had started spraying these weeds on Linda's property nearby late this spring, but even then they were already out of control and I must admit that I gave up. When Linda was here in July, she took a look at her property, sprayed some, but was disheartened. Not that I blame her; we had spent a number of days spraying last year's crop before bloom set, and it looked like we had not even been there.

So, we got out the big gun in the form of the John Deere tractor and Dan spent the morning scraping the driveway and the old horse pens, where the thistles were the thickest. I pulled them along the drive and in some of the vegetation. These plants are maddening: they branch off at soil level and are brittle, so pulling them up root and all is difficult. And some of these puppies are 4 feet tall, with 5 major branches each! Hopefully we are late enough in the season to not induce major regrowth, and before total seed development and dispersal.

We did our best, and Dan will go back later this week and torch the piles. Next year we will go the Preen route, and reinforce with Roundup where needed. I wonder how much Preen this is going to require?


webb said...

Do you have Costco anywhere accessible? They sell an 18-pound container of Preen. Enough for a year here, and enough for two square feet of thistles there! g.ood luck

Anneke said...

Ah, yes in Tucson. Thanks for the info!