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Volunteers needed for Knotweed clean up

Published on by Dr Paul Beckett

Japanese knotweed (Fallopia japonica) is well known for growing along river banks and other areas. It out-competes native species, can form dense monocultures, can cause damage to adjacent structures (including retaining walls, roads and paths), and can alter the ecology of small watercourses.
As a result, a local action team in Newtown (Newtown Environmental Action Team), Scotland,  is calling on volunteers to help them in their battle to save the Elsick Burn. The burn is just north of the village and the banks have been overrun with Japanese knotweed.
The group intend to initially cut down and remove the dead canes from previous years’ growth. They then hope that the River Dee Trust will apply herbicides to regrowth later on in the year.
Removing the dead, winter knotweed canes can help to gain access to large areas so that they can effectively be treated with herbicides. However, there is always a concern that by moving the canes growth could be spread to new areas due to the fragmentation of rhizome pieces. Also, the removed stems need to be treated as controlled waste and be appropriately disposed of, or burnt on site if this is allowed in the area.

About the author: Dr Paul Beckett

Dr Paul Beckett - picture

Dr Paul Beckett is one of the UK’s leading experts in Japanese knotweed and is a member of the Expert Witness Institute. He regularly provides Japanese knotweed expert witness services. He helped produce the RICS knotweed guidance for surveyors and was integral in the formation of the Property Care Association (PCA) Invasive Weed Control Group (IWCG).

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