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Thousands of thistles
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Randy    Posted 05-31-2002 at 05:35:39       [Reply]  [No Email]
I put a 6 acre field into CRP two years ago and had it planted with prairie grass and flowers. Last year about all that grew was giant rag weed.
This year more of the grass and flowers are coming up along with many,many thistles. I can't do any mowing until first of August but am alowed to cut the thistles if I want.
What is the best way to go after them? Should I cut them down with a weed wacker or give them each a shot of Roundup with a backpack sprayer?
Spraying them would be easier but just wonder how many other things I would kill. Any suggestions are apprciated.

rhudson    Posted 05-31-2002 at 12:22:20       [Reply]  [Send Email]
yeah, that crp was really a great idea wasn't it. i've seen more land in NC go wild in the last 5 years than the 20 before crp. anyway spray 2-4-d on the thistles before they seed. its going to be an ongoing thing, but with mowing you can get a handle on it,,,in a few years.

Danny in CO    Posted 05-31-2002 at 11:11:27       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Thistle comes up from seed from one year to the next. The seeds will live in the soil for years. As soon as you disturb the soil, here they come. Be sure you don't let the thistle flowers go to seed or you will have a worse problem in years to come. What I do is wait for them to flower and them go around with a garbage bag and clip off the flowers and put them in the bag. You will have to do this several time in late summer. If you do this each year, you will eventually get rid of it. Maybe!


screaminghollow    Posted 05-31-2002 at 08:57:55       [Reply]  [No Email]
I just read an article(Lancaster Farmer) about using vinegar as a weed killer. Normal Household apple cider vinegar is supposed to be 5%, the exact mix for killing thistles. The residue is not so dangerous and it is touted as organic. Haven't tried it yet.

Old Sarge    Posted 05-31-2002 at 07:31:22       [Reply]  [Send Email]
You might do like Ted Morris in Colville Wash. does with his. He has one field down by the creek that is full of them. Waits till they get 2 ft. tall or more, turns a bunch of cows in there, takes his sickle bar mower and makes one pass around the field a day. Cows just beller if he's late cuttin them thistles. He told me that cutting them activated the sugar content in them and it was like a candy bar to them cows.

jamo    Posted 05-31-2002 at 05:45:39       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Spay with roundup. If you don't want to worry about overspray either use cardboard as a shield or cut the bottom out of a 5 gal. pail and use that. Cutting them won't do anything but give you a good workout.

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