Are you wondering how to get rid of pokeweed? Luckily, you’ve landed in the right place. Here you can learn everything necessary to remove pokeweed. It’s no secret that pokeweed is one of the most difficult weeds to kill and control. That’s why some tips are needed to remove them completely.
Nowadays, pokeweed has become a nuisance to any gardener. But, what is this plant actually? And what should we know about pokeweed? Well, pokeweed or Phytolacca American is basically a kind of perennial herb. It usually grows in the U.S. hardiness zones 2 through 11.
Birds play a role to spread new plants by dropping seeds after consuming them. Plus, there are also seeds which fall of the plant. One pokeweed plant is able to generate 50,000 seeds throughout its life and each of them can last for 40 years.
Those are a few reasons why the pokeweed invasion is seriously hard to control. Just like cockroaches, pokeweed has the ability to survive the apocalypse. However, you don’t need to be panicked. This following information will tell you some good methods to get rid of this plant.
How to Get Rid of Pokeweed Safely
There are some good ways to get rid of this stubborn plant from your garden. Most people employ a combination of these techniques to see which works the best for them. But, you’ll always need to keep up the process for the better.
If you want to remove small pokeweed plant, you can actually remove this new shoot by hand. But, is pokeweed poisonous to touch? Unfortunately, all parts of this plant, especially the root, are poisonous. That’s why you should never touch pokeweed with your bare hands.
When you want to get rid of this plant, even the small shoot, you need to protect your hands with rubber gloves. They will help you avoid the dangerous chemicals in this plant to pass through your skin. After that, you can pull on the top of the plant firmly.
Do the method as if you’re harvesting a carrot. Once you do it appropriately, a thick taproot with a skinny root is going to emerge from the soil. This technique works best in light soil. Since clay soil can compact easily, it’s more difficult to get rid of the root manually.
How to Get Rid of Pokeweed in My Garden
Well, pokeweed may look decorative in your garden. With its big, smooth leaves, colorful stems, and dark purple berries, some people may find it quite attractive. But, if you ask this question: is pokeweed invasive? The answer is definitely yes! That’s why you need to know how to remove it.
If there’s a pokeweed plant in your garden and it happens to grow bigger, removing the base won’t work. If you want to remove it manually, digging deeper is needed to get out of the taproot. At this point, you’re supposed to dig a circle surrounding the base to remove the taproot.
To make it easier, take a sharp spade and use it to dig straight down. Typically, you have to dig up to 12 inches deep in order to get the taproot. After that, use the spade to get the plant loose from the group. Don’t forget to remove the whole root ball from the hole.
After you’ve completely removed the pokeweed plants, you have to get rid of the loose root pieces. This way, you can avoid the plants to grow back quickly. You can do it with a rototiller for wide areas or a garden hoe and shovel for small areas.
How to Get Rid of Pokeweed Naturally
To naturally get rid of pokeweed from your garden, you shouldn’t just throw it away after pulling out from the soil. It’s because the plant will tend to re-grow in the area where you throw it. Then, how can we get rid of this invasive plant completely?
To kill it completely, you need to put the pokeweed on a space away from the soil. For example, you can put it on a work surface or a tarp. After that, you can leave the plant in the sun to dry out and die.
Now the question is can you burn pokeweed to make it dead? Some have tried to burn it to a torch, but leaving it under the sun is basically enough. Once it has completely dried and dead, you can just throw it into a waste bin or a compost bin.
You just need to remember to never put the pokeweed into the compost bin when it’s not thoroughly dried. Then, even though you’ve done this process, you need to take notice of the area where this plant grows previously. If there are new shoots found, pull them as soon as possible.
How to Get Rid of Pokeweed and Prevent It to Grow Back
You’ve known some of the best methods to get rid of pokeweed naturally and safely. If the problem continues, you can consider using glyphosate herbicide to remove this annoying plant completely. Simply put the top of this plant into a container with 2-3% glyphosate herbicide.
This way, the pokeweed’s stem can suck up the chemicals and take it directly to the root. This method is helpful for a persistent problem. It’s required to leave the plant in the solution for two days. Or, you can apply the solution to the leaves and wait for the reaction until ten days.
Victims of this plant usually continue this removal process annually. The good news is that the patch will eventually get smaller with some effort and lots of digging. It’s also important to keep in mind that removing any new shoots is necessary so that they won’t prevent return.
In conclusion, removing pokeweed completely may need some time and effort. But, it’s surely worth your time and energy at the end. You can follow the methods mentioned above step by step for the best result. Finally, you’ve known how to get rid of pokeweed and prevent it to return.