Quack grass HELP!

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by Patti, May 5, 2004.

  1. Patti

    Patti Well-Known Member

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    :waa:

    I have the perfect garden spot... new garden. Had it tilled last fall, once a few weeks ago- and will have it tilled one more time before planting. Do you have tips on how to get rid of quack grass once and for all? Is it possible? Just keep picking it out? :no: I am trying to have a NATURAL garden, no chemicals.

    Any help would be much appreciated. :)
     
  2. june02bug

    june02bug Well-Known Member

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    After planting just mulch, mulch, mulch. If you put enough on you should be able to kill it. Just keep it well mulched.
     

  3. Patti

    Patti Well-Known Member

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    Thats what my mom said, she did say that I could keep straw down around the plants... what do you think of this?

    Thanks so much for your time. :)
     
  4. june02bug

    june02bug Well-Known Member

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    We use a lot of different things... leaves, hay, grass clippings, whatever I can get that doesn't have weed seeds in it.
     
  5. 1farmgirl

    1farmgirl Well-Known Member

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    If you have a chance or a place to get rice hulls, I recommend them highly! They are light, easy to use, easy to haul, do a great job mulching, do an excellent job of making your soil much easier to work with the next year. I used them for the first time last year and only had to water one time during the summer. I could get a heaping pick-up load for $2.50 or a dump truck (if I had one) for $5.00-and they load it for me. These had gotten wet at some time, and could not be used in the commercial chicken houses. The beds I used them on last year were a dream to dig up by hand this year. I didn't have a lot of weeds or even quack grass. I got it out pretty good before I put the hulls down, then mulched pretty thickly. When the grass would poke through, it had a long enough stem that I could grasp it very firmly and yank it out.

    Kathy
     
  6. Idahofarmergal

    Idahofarmergal Well-Known Member

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    Ooooohhhhh, quack grass.... my nemesis. Poor you. Mulching heavily helps, but you will still need to pull quite a bit. Just be sure you get the long root runners out, too. The nice thing about mulching is that the soil underneath is so light and fluffy that the roots pull out very easily. Stay on it. I read that if you keep pulling the quackgrass before it is six inches tall you will eventually starve out the roots. Don't know if its true as I have never succeeded in staying on it that judiciously (1 1/2 acre garden.) My greatest successes have come with using black plastic mulch, landscape fabric, and a rye smother (as in seed very heavily) crop in the aisles and in the beds over winter. You have to keep it out of your aisles and at least 5 feet away from the perimeter of the garden as those darn runner roots will travel quite far looking for new territory to conquer. I read this from another organic farmer: "My father told me the only way to rid your fields of quackgrass was to plow, then pull up all the roots to the surface with a thorough harrowing. Let dry in the sun for two weeks. Gather 'em all up into a pile and burn them. Dump the ashes far away from the field. Watch for re-emergence."
     
  7. Bret F

    Bret F Well-Known Member

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    When my Dad put in a new garden, he ran an electric fence around it and put a pig in it. The pig did a very thorough job root-o-tilling and got out all of the quack grass roots. Then we butchered the pig.