Thistles in mulch bed

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by Athletic field, May 16, 2008.

  1. Athletic field

    Athletic field LawnSite Member
    Messages: 152

    I have a lady whose pachysandra beds are over run with thistles.

    The guy who mows the lawn tried to clean up the bed by pulling the thistles out. Big mistake, now they are worse than ever! An extension agent told me to keep cutting them back and they will use their energy reserves to grow back and eventually die. He also said to wipe them with round-up using a wand or paint brush around the time they flower. Seems like alot?

    What would yunz guys do?
  2. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,793

    Canada thistle, right? It is all connected together by the roots. In a lawn no problem. Tough situation in a planting bed if it is mixed in with ground cover. But maybe there is a time of year when it is tender and can be attacked with weed killer and your good plants are not susceptible.

    PSUTURFGEEK LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 579

    I have a hand held injection gun with a six ounce tank, I usually use that to inject into the stems in situations like this. Inject roundup straight, it will kill it.
  4. rcreech

    rcreech Sponsor
    Male, from OHIO
    Messages: 6,163

    Lontrel works great in this situation. You can spray over the top of most plants as it is a selective product. Smokes thistles!

    You just want to be very careful around the solanacie family and a couple of other types of plants!

    PSUTURFGEEK LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 579

    The reason I made the suggestion I did is Lontrel will burn the living hell out of pachysandras, I actually use lontrel to selectively kill crown vetch and Pachysandrs. Lontrel is really only safe over top of rug type ground covers.
  6. rcreech

    rcreech Sponsor
    Male, from OHIO
    Messages: 6,163

    I have used it over all kinds of bushes with no problems!

    I have not killed any desired plants yet. I just stay away from the tender flowing plants.

    I am afraid that one day I will find out some things that is does kill that it shouldn't! :cry:
  7. heritage

    heritage LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,358


    Pachy is a very tough plant! Here in NJ, I have spot sprayed 41% roundup at 2 oz/gal, not to the point of runoff for this exact issue, with no damage/burn.

    Prior to this method, I tried to Kill a Pachy bed with 6 oz/gal of the 41% (It was Pro with Monsantos then secret surfactant) and guess what.......It didn't even touch it...Just a little burn/Growth Regulation.

    The 3 way Ester DID work though for that project.

    So since then (1998) just plain ole 41% Glysophate (NO DIQUAT ) @ the 1.5% solution rate (2 oz/gal) in the ole' Japanese Spurge (Pachysandra) for Thistle and other weeds/grasses.

    Hope this helps ya.

  8. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Messages: 5,955

    Amine formulations of 2,4D will cause little harm to the pachysandra cuz it has waxy leaves. Esters are more damaging. 2 or 3 sprays of amine should do the job on thistles without killing out the ground cover. Keep in mind that new thistle plants can pop up on a regular basis, but after 2 or 3 years, the thistle population should be pretty well dwindled out. If you want a shortcut, try ester herbicides....but the risk of damage to the ground cover is much greater.

    Hey -- at least you're not dealing with creeping Charlie near peonies or tomato plants.:laugh:
  9. Athletic field

    Athletic field LawnSite Member
    Messages: 152

    Thanks for the response guys.

    Just wondering if any of you cut the thistles before you spray, or just go in and spray them?
  10. mngrassguy

    mngrassguy LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,167

    Don't cut 'em, just spray.

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