View Full Version : solarising weeds - info on solarising weeds/effectiveness?
18-03-2004, 09:59 PM
hi all, just after any info on solarising.
does the plastic need to be clear as to let the light thru, or will anything such as a tarp do? is this process effective short/long term?
i have a particular case of ravaging singapore daisy growing on a close to 60 degree slope in a large area. i don't know the best option for removing this brilliant-growing pest. brushcutting is fine as long as you don't mind tumbling down the hill every few minutes. definitely no chemicals obviously and smaller pieces of cardboard then mulch are too hard to secure to the slope for any length of time.
18-03-2004, 10:11 PM
I've heard of people using sheets of corrugated iron, which sounds like it may work in your circumstance. The point is to prevent photosynthesis by placing a barrier between the sunlight and the leaves of the plant you wish to kill, I think...
One of the important things that solarisation does is heat the ground enough to kill pathogens and seeds by creating a sustained high temperature.
Of course it's usually done on flat ground with black plastic. The plastic is held down around the edges with soil or sand. It is watered lightly before putting the plastic down, to increase the heat and humidity in there.
It sounds like this daisy makes loads of seed, so you need to prevent it seeding by mulching to stop the seeds germinating and then plant something to take its place to prevent erosion. Preferably something less ferocious and more useful!
I think planting at regular intervals across the slope in spots you've hand cleared or where you have dug a hole and replaced it with unseedy soil.
The corrugated iron sounds good. It wouldn't slip down and is large. Creeping plants could possibly sneak out the edges though?
Think of plants to replace the cover for the slope while you wait for the pesky daisy to die.
20-03-2004, 02:53 PM
I have a similar situation - sloping sites full of weeds. The weeds include cobblers pegs and various others. I plan to use cardboard/newspaper and sugarcane mulch to kill them all. Still savin up the carboard and newspaper so that I have enough to make an all out assault. Will probably look at contacting local retailers (liquor barn maybe - I give them plenty of business) to get more cardboard. Black plastic or iron are not a viable solution due to the sheer size of the areas involved. Although my property is only 1 acre, I reckon 1/3 of it has a severe weed problem - though not all of this is slope.
Erosion after I've done this is a major concern and I would be interested in any comments on what I could plant that is easy to grow, non invasive and as a bonus, may have some other uses (food or mulch etc). I live in SE Queensland in an area that has some frosts in winter (normally only a couple a year).
Any comments are welcome.
20-03-2004, 09:01 PM
thanx heaps everyone for your help so far. gonna give the black plastic a go, as corrugated iron is going to be difficult to manage on the slope and besides, i don't have any.
for veggie boy : i have come across a good suggestion for a replacement ground cover which should serve both of us well (i'm in SE QLD too) - Pinto Peanut (Arachis Pintoi). it's an excellent legume groundcover, tolerant of full sun and part shade. perennial, attractive, used for erosion control (on slopes especially) is a great nitrogen fixer/living mulch and attracts pollinators. is edible. thrives in tropical and subtropical climates. frosts can kill leaves but quickly recovers when warm again and can be mown easily and regenerates well without taking over.
so......let's see if this works
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