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Giant Hogweed - HELP!!!


By roodie


Every summer my unwelcome guest the Hogweed makes an appearance in my back garden, if left untreated it takes over and turns my back yard into a jungle so i am constantly cutting it back.

I’m about to go into my garden now and take out as many as i can from the roots, any advice on how to treat my soil to avoid a return after my de-weeding of it?

and grow very high, with pollen at the top.

the leaves generally looks like this

the stems get like this and are very difficult to cut though, they also release a sap which can be harmful to the skin.

id like my garden to be free completely, any other methods i should be using or soil treatment.?


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A flamethrower? Seriously, I don't know, but I hope you find a solution soon!


A search found this information on the Environment Agency site:

Chemical control is most effective. Spraying can start as soon as the plant is about 1m high, usually in March and continue throughout the summer. More than one application is often necessary and follow-up spraying will be required to kill seedlings in subsequent years.

Non-chemical control Cutting down stems with a sharp scythe before flowering will help control this plant. Flail mowing is possible but with extreme caution due to the risk of being sprayed with sap. Protective clothing should be worn.

The crown may be dug out just below ground to prevent regrowth this provides good control.

Grazing by cows and sheep will suppress growth but will not eradicate it.

It is essential to establish vegetation quickly after control measures have been applied, as dense grass sward tends to discourage seed germination.

Disposal: Should be taken to a landfill site or by piling on site and composting.

1 Mar, 2009


Thanks madmum, I've tried burning it down, no joy as they are full of wet sap the fire doesn't light properly.

What I've done today is taken out every single one i can see re-emerging from the ground and pulled it out from the roots. put it aside to dry out and burn.

I darn't add it to my compost as I fear it might come back on me one I use the compost later in the year.

Most advice forums have suggested weed killer, it doesn't seem effective.

I want to lay a new lawn at the back, but i don't want it to be a waste of money if the hogweed returns- As most website seems to suggest that its seeds can still be around form 7 to even 15 years after its removal!

1 Mar, 2009


You re doing a grand job with the stuff Roodie and of course quite right to put it nowhere near your compost heap.

Many years ago I was asked to strim an area of this on a real hot day wore gloves visor etc but still got this sap on my arms - never seen blistering like it and warmth from hot water etc made condition worse almost impossible to resist giving it a good scratch !

Cant stress highly enough what a skin irritant this is and effects can last years so please wrap up literally from head to toe - paying particular attention to protecting your eyes.

I am no fan of chemicals but would recommend a good dousing with something as aggressive as SBK brushwood killer.Put your plans for a lawn in this area on hold for a while - eventually a wild meadow garden may be more appropriate.

1 Mar, 2009


You poor thing! I send you my sympathy. BB is good at this sort of advice - I have only had to cope with Japanese Knotweed. At least that didn't bite back!

1 Mar, 2009


I've found this site, which provides really good advice for removing hogweeds, just in case anyone else ever comes across it the link is here for reference.

I think I need to go back into the garden, the rain isn't helping, as the exposed soil will soak it all in.

I found when pulling the weeds out, I was finding never ending amounts of weeds for stinging nestles. But I was accidentally pulling up roots from the trees too- which can't be good.

3 Mar, 2009

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