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Waging War

June 20th, 2013

Here at Chiot’s Run we’re waging ware on the quack grass! The big garden in back is our main focus at the moment as the edges of it were being overtaken by it.
quackgrass 1
There are ways of managing quack grass organically. You can follow a tilling regiment for a year and eradicate it that way. Keeping the grass mown short around your garden will also help. I’m using pigs to help get rid of it here.
quackgrass 3
There’s no way we’ll get rid of this grass this year, no doubt this war will continue for years to come.
quackgrass 2
Of course the pigs don’t eat all of it, but they root it up nicely and I’ve been picking it out of the soil by the bucket full. I dry it and burn it, revenge at it’s finest!

Do you have a weed that you battle more than others?

23 Comments to “Waging War”
  1. Marina C on June 20, 2013 at 5:20 am

    Bishop’s weed!
    From everything I have read, there is no way to eradicate it!
    If anyone know otherwise, pray tell!

    Reply to Marina C's comment

  2. Mich on June 20, 2013 at 5:23 am

    In my flower order I have quack grass and in my big veg plot I have some sow thistle….both of which have my full attention!
    I cannot bring myself to empty the flower border and start a major clearing job so it’s just digging it out where possible.

    Reply to Mich's comment

  3. Joan on June 20, 2013 at 6:44 am

    Lots of quack grass and other grass. Also lots of sow thistle, which I love and hate – it brings up nutrients from deep in the earth, so that’s a good thing, but there’s just too much of it! We also have some sort of wild mustard that has been spreading through our neighborhood and is really terrible – it has taken over my neighbor’s garden with it’s huge root system and large basal rosettes. Everytime I find it in mine I root it out – hopefully I can keep it under control.

    Some weeds I love though, and let grow wild (with restraints!): lambs quarters because it is delicious and freezes well, purslane, sheep sorrel and wood sorrel because of their great lemony flavor, and lady’s thumb, because if I let a bit of this grow near my beans the japanese beetles seem to leave the beans alone and eat this instead…

    Reply to Joan's comment

  4. Ann on June 20, 2013 at 7:11 am

    Oh Lordy,

    Red Rooted Pigweed. A horrible, horrible weed. It got brought in from the neighbors pasture when we got some of her composted horse manure to spread in the garden. It can get up to 5 foot tall and it is covered with spiny thorns. In the amaranth family, it makes a million tiny seeds from each plant. My bunny rabbits will sometimes eat a few leaves if I pick them very young. But I rarely bother. We pull if the soil is wet and soft, hoe if it is not. But it is a constant constant job and one we will never really win.

    Reply to Ann's comment

  5. Lisa on June 20, 2013 at 7:38 am

    Dollar weed. I call it the herpes of gardening. Mine came in on a waxed flat of monkey grass (dwarf mondo grass) from my sister’s yard. It wasn’t visible in the offering but 8 months later I have a spreading invasion. Is it practically a succulent and spreads UNDER my pine straw mulch. So….to get rid of it, I have to pull up all the pine straw. It rolls up like woven carpet…but in 97F heat with 80% humidity, it is not an easy task.

    Reply to Lisa's comment

    • daisy on June 20, 2013 at 8:36 am

      Dollar weed can often be eliminated by being mindful of watering practices. It thrives in areas that have standing water.

      Reply to daisy's comment

  6. Marina C on June 20, 2013 at 8:09 am

    I am grateful all I have is the Bishop’s Weed!

    Reply to Marina C's comment

  7. daisy on June 20, 2013 at 8:37 am

    Oh, so THAT’s Quackgrass. Yeah, we have that coming up through our front beds. Not fun to keep on top of it as we have no pigs to help us.

    Reply to daisy's comment

  8. whit on June 20, 2013 at 8:48 am

    Hoping you are enjoying your visit with family!

    We have buttercup like you wouldn’t believe here. Come to find out that it spreads by runners and by seed! Pure evil. And if you dig it out and leave just one microscopic root, a full plant will grow back. That and horse tail are quickly becoming reasons I am losing interest in weed management and wanting to move to the concrete jungle. :) Thankfully, both are indicator species for low lime, so we are going to try a few applications and see if it helps.

    Reply to whit's comment

  9. Johanna on June 20, 2013 at 9:36 am

    I have a vining weed that I can’t identify that’s really getting on my nerves in the garden! It’s has a growth habit similar to bindweed but doesn’t flower and has slightly different shaped leaves. There must be a really established network of roots because whenever I try to pull or dig it out, I can never seem to get all of it. Dandelions are also a problem, but I’m finding fewer and few of them as I continue to amend the soil.

    One section of my garden that borders the neighbor’s fence sometimes gets invaded by ground ivy; however, I don’t mind that as much because the bees seem to LOVE the flowers. I only pull it when it starts to wrap itself around my cabbages.

    Reply to Johanna's comment

  10. Crinia on June 20, 2013 at 9:38 am

    There are a number of weeds in our district classed as noxious. This means we can be fined for not actively controlling them on our property.They are all weeds that livestock will not eat and can take over whole properties if not controlled. The main culprits around here are Serrated Tussock, Paterson’s Curse, Sifton Bush and thistles.

    Reply to Crinia's comment

  11. Nebraska Dave on June 20, 2013 at 9:52 am

    Susy, quack grass, huh. I haven’t heard that term since I moved into Urban America about 30 years ago. We all call it here “Crabgrass”. Yes, a much refined name that fits urban living lawns. Most folks here bathe their lawns in pre emergent at least a couple times a year to control the pesky weed and keep their velvet soft lawn free of the nauseous, oh wait, I mean noxious weeds. As for me, I just let it grow in the back yard. It’s kid playground tough, drought proof, mows down easy, and never has to be fertilized. Yeah, well, I have to make sure it doesn’t creep into the neighbor’s barefoot grass yards or I’d definitely be in trouble. :0)

    Have a great nauseous (pun intended) weed day.

    Reply to Nebraska Dave's comment

    • Susy on June 20, 2013 at 6:07 pm

      Actually crabgrass and quack grass are different, crab grass is an annual weed, quack grass is perennial and spreads by roots. Though perhaps what you’ve learned as crab grass is in fact quack grass and not what crab grass is.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  12. Mrs. H on June 20, 2013 at 10:56 am

    Thistles seem to be very fertile around here in our area of southeast Michigan.
    When I lived in Kansas, we battled crab grass (looks just like your pictures of quack grass, so it might be the same thing with different regional names) CONSTANTLY. It seemed to thrive in the clay soil down there. There’s a little of it here where we live now, but it’s so much easier to pull out of the soil here.

    Reply to Mrs. H's comment

  13. amy on June 20, 2013 at 11:22 am

    After reading this post I looked up crab grass which is what I thought I was battling only to learn it is quack grass…..similar…but quack is worse….whoopee(sarcasm and sigh)….I loathe this stuff and have been very aggressive with it only to see it re-emerge time and again….I also battle Chinese Yam….Poison Hemlock…Burdock…Ladys Thumb….Hairy Galinsoga….mallow….just to name a few ;)

    Reply to amy's comment

  14. Stoney Acres on June 20, 2013 at 11:40 am

    Quack grass is the worst. We are sturuggling with it at our new place as well. The folks that owned our place before us really neglected the yard for a couple of years and most of the lawn is quack grass!! Ugh!!

    Reply to Stoney Acres's comment

  15. Emily on June 20, 2013 at 12:40 pm

    Bishops weed aka Gout Weed is what we’re battling. We made a major offensive against it in the flower beds this spring by digging up large areas, sifting the soil to remove the roots, putting down landscape fabric & mulching heavily. Now my job is to weekly keep on top of any sprouts that come up in hopes of eradicating it.

    And there is grass in the garden too.

    Reply to Emily's comment

  16. Songbirdtiff on June 20, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    Ug… Bermuda grass.

    Reply to Songbirdtiff's comment

  17. Elyse on June 20, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    I am fighting two invasive vines: saw briar and something very similar to Virginia creeper, but with thorns galore. (Anyone have any idea what it is?) There’s also some sort of privet that’s trying to take over the yard; it spreads underground. One small portion of the yard is so bad we’ve thought of killing it all off somehow and planting grass – DH asked a local landscaping company what grasses do well here and they suggested Bermuda grass. *shudder*

    Reply to Elyse's comment

  18. Caroline on June 20, 2013 at 10:34 pm

    The only weed I know by name in our yard, is the Creeping Charlie. Well, and the dandelions of course! Looking at your photos, I’m pretty sure we have the quack grass, too! I actually think it came into the garden this year via the free compost I picked up from the county!

    Oh well…. I try to just smother it with mulch, then pick up what pops up from underneath it!

    Reply to Caroline's comment

  19. amy s on June 20, 2013 at 11:44 pm

    I too have this crazy grass and it’s now growing inside of my perennials. I don’t know what to do about it. when you pull it up, doesn’t it just break apart from the root system. My island is really getting a lot in there and I don’t know how to rid of it. please advise lol

    Reply to amy s's comment

  20. KimH on June 21, 2013 at 12:39 am

    Mock strawberries & bindweed are the ones that irritate me the most.. especially the bindweed. Its everywhere.. If I didnt despise Monsanto so much and hate what it does to our earth, I’d use some on it.. but I dont.. sigh.. I just deal with it.. dig it up when I see it strangling something..

    Reply to KimH's comment

  21. laura on June 22, 2013 at 11:47 pm

    crab grass mostly and well anything else that isn’t growing where i want it.

    Reply to laura's comment

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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