How to control the spread and destroy Japanese Knotweed?

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Japanese Knotweed is among invasive species found in plants of Britain. It spreads quickly and harms the native vegetation as it prevents them from growing. It is also harmful for the construction industry as it has the capacity to expose weaknesses in foundations, buildings and concrete.

If there is anyone having a question as what does the Japanese knotweed look like then below is an answer to it.

1) Is lush green in colour
2) Has heart shaped leaves
3) Has a bamboo like stem
4) Has white flowers around September or October
5) Itís growth is limited to 10cm a day
6) Its stem can reach three metres high and can move up to seven metres.

There are certain things that a landowner should keep in mind to prevent the spread of this invasive plant. Below we have discussed the Do's and Don'ts that can avoid risk happening activities:

DO's
1) Make a plan for removing Japanese Knotweed from your site.
2) It is advised to follow the Environment Agency's Code of Practice.
3) Herbicides should be used safely and in an effective manner.
4) It is necessary to obtain the approval of the Environment Agency before treating it.
5) If using an herbicide then follow the manufacturer's instructions regarding its safe use and effective clothing. Clean these items thoroughly before leaving the contaminated site.
6) Make sure while using the herbicides you donít cause harm to non-target plants.
7) Apply the spraying when itís the weather conditions are dry. Avoid during moist weather.
8) If thereís anything you canít understand then contact an ecology consultant

DON'Ts
1) Flailing Japanese Knotweed can spread it more. So, it is advised to avoid flailing.
2) Avoid cutting it with sharp hooks and slashers.
3) If cutting Japanese Knotweed then dispose of it on a licensed disposal site.
4) Avoid digging up Japanese Knotweed as it will lead to increase in density of stem.
5) Even a tiny fragment can regenerate.
6) Any soil that is spread around within 7 m of Japanese Knotweed shouldnít be used because it contains the rhizome.
7) This rhizome regenerate rapidly and rapidly grows into new plants.
8) Never take them to recycling centers because it will contaminate the compost.
9) Never dump the garden waste that is contaminated with Japanese Knotweed in the countryside.
10) Treat it immediately as you notice them. Never let them establish.
11) Make sure you donít break the law because if you are held responsible for spreading it then under Wildlife and Countryside Act, 1981, you are guilty.
12) Legally landowners are not allowed to remove Unless it causes nuisance to the neighbors Landowners are not legally obliged to remove Japanese Knotweed, unless it is causing a nuisance to neighboring property.
13) Make sure that the disposing procedure takes place properly carefully.

Currently the most effective method is repeated spraying of herbicides which reduce the growth of the plant. If decided to hire a contractor then ensure they are registered with waste carrier.

Robin Lawson is an ecology consultant working in Japanese knotweed division. Here he explains the doís and doníts to avoid risk.

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