How safe is this stuff to use around established trees. The scenario...
jasmine ground cover and holly removed for a new bed, the area is
surrounded by large old oaks. The landscape people want to use the
fertilome brush and stump to kill the roots of the jasmine. Seems
suspect to me, but I do not understand chem speak well enough to figure
out what they were telling me when I googled this stuff. Any help
pointers appreciated. For what it's worth the site is in Austin TX zone
Seems like something that once it's applied nothing will grow there
for quite a while. I wouln't use a defoliant to clear an area I
tendeded to replant. I used to apply roundup to my gravel roadway but
I don't bother anymore (not good for wildlife, or me for that matter,
plus it's expensive, and hard work out in the hot sun), a few weeds
don't hurt anything... were I really concerned I'd just drive over it
more often. Were it me wanting to start a new planting bed I'd pull
the majority of weeds by hand and then gas up the rototiller. And
softwood stumps will usually decompose in under five years.
Appears to be triclopyr, which I would not allow to be sprayed around
plants I want to keep -- it's a general broadleaf herbicide (your oaks are
broadleaf plants, fwiw -- triclopyr doesn't (in general) touch
grasses or conifers. I might consider it for your use
applied directly to a cut stump, depending on the species and area
involved, but not as a spray, even thickened. It has a 30-90 day half
life in the soil, so you're not going to be replanting any time soon.
It's also potentially mobile in the soil. Some formulations of triclopyr
are Restricted Use Pesticides, which means you have to have a license to
apply them. That, to me, means I'd just as soon not have those around.
As herbicides go, it's probably not one of the worst... just not one I've
had any real experience with. I probably just would have girdled the
plants you wanted to remove, and then chopped them a couple of years later.
If I really wanted to use it at the stage you seem to be at (the brush has
been cut and hauled?), I'd probably do it personally, using something like
a stamp licker to apply it, and dye included with the herbicide so I could
keep track of what I'm treating.
General information on triclopyr:
John A. Keslick, Jr.
Beware of so-called tree experts who do not understand tree biology.
Storms, fires, floods, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions keep reminding us
that we are not the boss.
I don't know any thing about the brush killer you have described. However,
I've used Tordon* RTU on both stumps and tree seedlings that can't be
pulled. There is no mixing, you use it straight from the bottle, and it
comes with a nozzle top. Very easy and pretty accurate. You should apply
it to the stump immediately after cutting (for a seedling we're only talking
about a few drops). I've used it on both large tree stumps and seedling
trees in flower beds. I have never had trouble with it hurting the
surrounding plants. A word of caution - If you are treating stumps and you
have the same kind of bush or tree as the cut tree, and if they are close,
the roots may have grafted to each other. In that case, if treated it may
also kill the uncut tree.
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