Cutting Down Cattails

Discussion in 'General Industry Discussions' started by rodfather, Sep 6, 2005.

  1. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    We have a new customer (private 7 acre residence) this year that has a fairly large pond with cattails surrounding it. They informed me last week that around Thanksgiving time or so, they want all the cattails cut down (gave no reason why) other than just do it.

    First of all, I don't have a clue what you use to cut them down with. Machete, sickle bar, etc.? Secondly, I had them on a property I once owned near some wetlands and bog and they look real nice in the winter when they turned brown against the snow. So I'm not too crazy what it will look like either after hacking them down.

    Now here is the kicker. Talking with some business owners at a cookout over the weekend and discussing our occupations, by coincidence the topic of crazy requests came up. Of course, I mentioned the most recent one about cutting down cattails. Two people completely out of the Green Industry looked at me like I was nuts and then went on to say they thought it probably was illegal.

    Do cattails fall under any form of Wetland Protection even on private property? Anyone here who has information or a link to a site with information for me to read on this I would greatly appreciate. Last thing I want is my rear end in a sling with the EPA or some tree hugging group. Personally, I don't want to cut them down and would love a legal reason not to.

    Thanks...
     
  2. mmacsek

    mmacsek LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 544

    Rod,
    We own property,about 2 acres, and about .25 acres is wetlands. There are cattails growing there amongst other"swamp" stuff. I was looking into minor developing a few years ago and alot of red flags went up. The state and the federal fish and wildlife came into play. Bog turtles are endangered on the state and federal levels and their habitat cannot be disturbed. In a nutshell that area cannot be disturbed. I don't have a link but I think a call to the state DER would answer your question. Matt
     
  3. TURF DOCTOR

    TURF DOCTOR LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,138

    We cut a property weekly a 100 bucks 2 ponds 1 covered in tails redmax always whacks em down the best way is to pull them up by hand.
     
  4. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    You may want to call the DNR for this one. It may nt apply for just these cattails on private property, though. One ide would be to use an extended hedgesaw - the type that has a pivoting head.
     
  5. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Posts: 4,900

    Brush blade on a stihl 250 makes fast work of them BUT they will grow back. They can be sprayed witha glysophate and orange peel added to make it stick. 1 man with a whacker around 7 acres if the tails reach out 3' will take approx. 4-6 hrs depending on the degree of slope he has to stand on. OR an old cycle bar for a 3 point on a trac takes about 30-45 min.
     
  6. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    Think I will have to dig into this some...thanks guys, I do appreciate your input.
     
  7. Turf Troll

    Turf Troll LawnSite Member
    Posts: 227

    I take care Of about 20 acres, ditches, slopes, ponds cattails and phragmities.
    34cc kawa. with 3 point blade and no trimmer shield but full face screen shield and saftey glasses. The key is the 3 point blade, sometimes in the drainage ditchs an extended 12' hedge trimmer but that is not the best.
     
  8. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    Ok, I guess my next point/question is, "why cut them down to begin with?"
     
  9. DUSTYCEDAR

    DUSTYCEDAR LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Posts: 5,134

    THEY JUST WANT TO SEE YOUR OLD BUT OUT THERE DOING IT LOL :waving:
    THEY WILL SIT UP ON THE HILL AND LAFF AND TELL EVERYONE AT X-MASS WE GOT THE LAWN BOY TO MOW THE POND :p
     
  10. lawnmaniac883

    lawnmaniac883 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,613


    LMAO, thats just too funny :p
     

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