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Eradicating the dreaded weed "Horsetail or Mares tail".....a552

Eradicating the dreaded weed "Horsetail or Mares tail".....a552

This is the toughest weed to eliminate from a garden. Bindweed,couch grass and ground elder are easy in comparison. The roots go down 3 feet or more so digging out isn't really an option. The only method which can be successful is to bruise the stems to allow penetration of systemic weed killers such as Roundup ( Glyphosate) Even this will take spraying every week for months. Alternatively covering with weed supressing membrane or old carpet may work but will take more than a year to be effective. Indeed when I stripped out my pond liner last year there were roots of horsetail 3 feet underground and they'd been there for 3 years!

If the weed is growing through a plant you want to save , try putting the weed killer on some rubber glove covered hands and applying to the weed..

It is a VERY difficult weed to eradicate and if you get one piece in your garden tackle it religiously as it spreads by spores and soon you'll be over run!



Addendum :

I'm told that mixing roundup (glyphosate) with wallpaper paste makes it stick better to the plant and is quite effective.Never tried it though

Further addendum:

Since writing the above I've learned that this product (The weed killer Kibosh) will kill mares tail

I have not used the above product yet and have no links with the product maker but it may well be worth a try as the video on the link seems very convincing

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Hi Anchorman, I have both Marestail and ground elder in my garden of the two I find Ground elder far worse. Mares tail weakens the more I pull it and over the years I have much less also its a poor soil weed so the more I have cultivated the land the better. Whereas Ground elder no matter what I do it keeps coming through from both my neighbours.

23 Aug, 2010


I have a great deal of experience in clearing ground elder with 100% success. If you're prepared to use weedkiller then ground elder will be killed all the way to the bottom of the root with two or three applications of Glyphosate (roundup)

If you spray your side of the garden where the stuff is coming through from your neighbours it will kill it back to its roots in your neighbours garden. Granted you'll occasionally need to spray again as new stuff finds its way through from your neighbours but you won't have to do this very often.

I have exactly the same problem in many of my customers gardens and I've controlled the ground elder very successfully.

24 Aug, 2010


I have too many established shrubs and wild life where the Ground elder is to spray - so I have to hand weed. But I have this year carefully sprayed those coming thought the neighbours broken fence with Roundup, I dont expect to get rid of it but its under control.

24 Aug, 2010


When I had two allotments a chap had mairs tale on his allotment, he had dug a trench 6 ft down the vien, he gave up in the end as he did nt want to use pesticides when he would be growing veg, yes it is a pain to get rid of, had this in my garden, don't know about ground elder never have had that to deal with.

24 Aug, 2010


I have a little bit by the side of my garage but I keep it in check by spraying weed killer after bruising the leaves, as you say above. It comes in from the neighbouring gardens.

6 Sep, 2010

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