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brahma1

What is the best killer for spear thistle?

Our 30 acres was organic, we are now over run with spear thistle.
We are planning on mowing them down and then using round up, but thought I would ask if anyone has a better method.
Thankyou
Dogwalker

Spear thistles are biannual so as long as they don't seed it shouldn't take too long to get rid of them.

Last year I hand cut three trailer loads, cut right down in the base so they didn't resprout. there's only a few rosettes there this year.

Just got to get the creeping thistle under control now. The goats are helping well eating out the flower buds.
Rob R

What is/was the land and what are you planning on doing with it? I assume you're not bothered about maintaining organic status.

The plant needs to be actively growing for roundup to be effective, so it's a bit late in the season for optimum use. If it's grassland you can kill off all the broadleaves with something like Grazon, but if you're reseeding or cultivating, Roundup (other Glyphosate herbicides are available) will kill everything & be cheaper.

ETA - my preference would be what Dogwalker says, above.
brahma1

In the grazing fields we have cut them down with good results, the wild boar love them. In the 2 bare fields the cattle are eating the heads as the wonder through, but the goats are more interested int he hedges at the moment.
brahma1

Thankyou rob, it was wheat with the tennant farmer, we are going to be putting it down to grass and potatoes.
The plan is to mow down as some have got 6ft nearly then roundup the lot.
No not keeping organic status,although all around us is so will get the same problem each year I suspect, once we have the 30 acres in 2 fields sorted we should be able to keep on top of them
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