View Full Version : Brush cutter attachment for weeds.
I am having a lot of trouble getting an attachment for my brush cutter for spraying chemicals on a cut stump. Anyone know where to get such a device as extensive searching has proved useless?
It comprises of a tank for the chemical to be sprayed, a trigger control and a spray nozzle that attaches to the brush cutter shaft.
14-10-2009, 04:04 PM
I wonder what part of "Planting" or "Growing" or "Nurturing" a machine like that is used for?
As a responsible land owner, I consider the removal of introduced and pest plants and animals a vital part of land management so I can plant, grow and nurture more appropriate things such as native flora and fauna.
If you would like to suggest a more suitable area on the forums for this topic, please feel free to do so.
people around here aren't against cutting weeds, but seriously, do you need something that poisons them at the same time? you aren't going to get much help here with that
Well sixty acres of lantana and rubber vine isn't exactly going to be loved out of existance. I was looking for some practical assistance but I guess this is the wrong place.
Could the mods please remove this thread.
14-10-2009, 09:47 PM
Welcome to the PRI Forum.
I see you have already met a few of the locals :P .
I've seen a lot of different bush regeneration methods, but have never come across an applicator like that before. Have not done any woody weed cut/stump for a while, but have done a lot in the past, in a lot of different bioregions. Always used a wand, brush, or for the really big ones, a syringe.
The rig in the pics you have provided suggests a rather indiscriminate method of application. Lots of off target spraying, and drift even?
Is the material you are cutting small in diameter, say under 5mm, and you have a hectares of the stuff to cut? Is this why you want to spray? Or is it that you just want to speed up the process of application on larger stumps?
I wonder if you have explored all other options? There are surprisingly many, for many different situations. Maybe if you tell us what you are cutting/removing, where you are in terms of a bioregion, and what other than reveg (if anything) you are trying to achieve.
Asking for a heads-up on a spray applicator in a forum such as this, is probably bound to raise a few eyebrows. But, please get back to us if we can help with any alternative methods/advice.
14-10-2009, 10:26 PM
G'day again, Dane
I have read your previous posts, and from that have found that you are in NQ. And, from just catching your last one, at least now we know what you are up against.
Is the lantana growing mono? Is there an overstory? Slope? Water? These are just a few of the factors that could impinge upon the advice ayone may offer.
Tell you what we did when I was working in the field on a lantana removal project. Now, this may or may not be appropriate for your situation, but it might give you another option...
The site we worked on was only about 6ha, was ex dairy, minimal slope, end of the dry, no surface water in the area, some remnant overstory coming back (had about 80% canopy closure) and no understory save for the lantana, which was 2mt high on the ground, and 6mt high on various trees. We slashed, both manually (with brush axes) and with chainsaw wheels on brushcutters. We cut close to ground level first round, so we could walk around/through the cane stumps, and literally 'rolled up' the lantana into big, fat 'cigars', These we dragged to the clearing/landing, where we fed them through a wide-mouth chipper. Once you get the pointy ends started, it just drags it through. We went back and cut all the canes off at ground level. The site was planted out with indig tube stock, and we mulched it heavily with the chipped lantana. Went back 6-months later, had about 80% success with the tubes (1mt), and a shitload of regrowth with the lantana (.5mt) :P . Repeated the slashing, and the mulching. Back 12-months later, the understory was really coming along, and out competing the lantana. Last I heard, 2-years ago, 6-yaers after I was first on site - very little lantana, and what remained, was easily being grubbed out by hand. Oh, I had about 10 (5 WWOOFers, 5 Landcarers) onsite the first round, which took us about 6-hours of hard graft to knock over. When I went back 6-month later, it was just the three of us.
I know it looks really daunting when you first start, I haven't shared the above with you to say, "Well, if we can do it, so can you". Just thought it might give you a bit of encouragement to think about something other than the spray.
Good luck with it, and please let us know how you get on, whatever you decide to do.
15-10-2009, 05:12 AM
we all have our feelings about the use of cemicals in weed control, if it applies slashing down the area with a brushcuter then mulching it will go a long way even the addition of newspaper under the muck for hardy weeds, this works on nut grass so it will do same for other applications. there would have to be over spray using a device like that or uncontrolled spray at the very least? to find out about the attachement have you talked to the makers of the brushcutter? or contacted machinery suppliers in rural areas?
having said that i see no harm in using the dreaded glypho' to controll nut grass in an away from the garden and an unmulchable area, by cutting each plant and painting with raw glypho', especailly when alternative method like applying pool chlorine didn't work. that i see is full control over the application no chance of uncontrolled spray or spray drift.
so for you if you don't go the slash and mulch way, then controlled spray may be more to the point slash it down and wait for the new growth to appear then spray if. i got rid of grounsel by simply spraying strong (for woody growths) mix of glypho' on the young growth of plants up to 1.7 meters high they all died in a couple of weeks.
anyhow let us know if you find the device and where just for general edification purposes, first time i've ever seen says this old mower mechanic, is maybe it is a development of recent times?
as good permaculturists we need to use whatever method is neded to control or manage weeds but we need to do it with full conrol, not like farers who give scant regard to their local communities when the apply sprays.
15-10-2009, 05:57 AM
Whats wrong with burning it ? They still burn sugar cane in many areas don't they ?
15-10-2009, 07:19 AM
i though burning had been outlawed eric?
as from what i remember being told up mackay way they grow a second crop from the stool. so they took the burning pollution factor away in prefference to more spraying to control weeds and whatever they need to do to control rats etc.,.
catch 22 for locals.
suppose 'dane' could use a flame wand?? but would hazzard at a guess not allowed in high fire danger times, like now for most of us. still think much can be achieved with slash and mulch.
15-10-2009, 10:16 AM
In a past life we also cleared about 10 acres of thick lantana. At the time we did use chemical in the steep gully section with mixed results. I would not repeat the process now. Timing is key for success with chemical, tied with growing season, although this might not be so relevant for you, given your climate. And yes, you can get exactly what you're after - the manufacturer of the gadget should be able to supply if you feel this is the path for you.
As I said, we would not use chemical now, having journeyed more through life since that time and become more aware of other options and the full impact of chemicals. As has already been mentioned, part of the problem with spraying is it kills everything. If re-veg and protection of your native wildlife is one of your objectives then it may be counter-productive and there are other options.
In those early days we also had just as much success using our dingo mini-loader, with a modified ripper attachment. One person on the machine pulling out the plants out by the roots and the other carting them away to a mulcher, which was also very successful. If funds had permitted we would have used a bobcat with a mulcher head ... the ultimate quick solution, providing terrain allows and you are not worried about what else you might be trashing. (With years more experience since that time, not sure we would even do that now - trashes too much).
For the steep gulllies we now use the brushcutter/mulch method described by ecodharmamark, with much success. Pulled roots in this situation is counter-productive because of the erosion issue it creates. Using fire is also an issue if your trees and grasses are not able to tolerate it. In our case vine scrub (dry rainforest) is very sensitive to fire, so many species would not come back up. In cases where people have repeatedly burnt, this has allowed the eucalypts to dominate, potentially making the country more fire prone. Many pasture species also suffer in fire, so biodiversity is dramacially reduced.
We now live on another property (160acres) south of Brisbane, which also has a lot of lantana on the forest fringe. Here we are working on a different approach, using the lantana as shelter for reveg trees at first. Any clearing is done in a mosaic fashion with tube stock planted in the gaps. This patchy approach might not look as pretty, but it protects the young trees from wind/sun and also gives the many birds, native animals and reptiles more chance of finding new homes. One thing lantana does do is provide great habitat. It's also a fantastic soil conditioner.
So yes, I hear what you are saying about eradicating weeds, but unless you have thick mulch and a plan for what you are going to replace the lantana with, a slower more graduated program might be more successful ... and without the chemicals if possible.
Consider what other plants, animals, reptiles and insects are also in the space ... how will they be effected by your approach?
And have you done much reading about weeds. We used to be quite fearful about the lantana and thistles getting out of control. But there is another school of thought which sees them as having a place in the regeneration of degraded landscape. (Peter Andrews' writing is the first that comes to mind, but there are many many others).
Above all - don't panic. It won't get away from you.
And welcome to the forum ...
15-10-2009, 10:39 AM
Yeah, slash and mulch is a good option.
I was just throwing burning into the debate... theres always lots of options. Spraying comes to mind first for most people... maybe it gets them to the pub quicker on friday afternoon... who knows (not anyone specifically... just general speculation). :mrgreen:
15-10-2009, 10:43 AM
yeh we looked at a property pretty much well covered with lantana, and our plan was to grow pumpkins and gourdes over them to knock them back a bit, i like the bit about using their cover to grow tube stock under and yes the soil under lantana is usually pretty good stuff, my dad used to get it when he could for top dressing.
I'm in the process of killing about an acre of lantana.. I am starting by pulling out all of the large plants roots and all with a winch, the smaller ones, I can pull out by hand. If I get forced to poison, I will make sure it is well directed in small portions, not indistcriminant., so that it doesn't get into my soil, my food, and my dam.
15-10-2009, 02:06 PM
when you pull them there is still the amount of viable seed left laying around? is this not so. our plan was and yes it would have been huge, was to mulch the area we removed lantana from even if each bush at a time. saw an example up gatton way of where a farmer dozed it with some sort of blade and he spread it around even more, as was pointed out by an organic farmer who preffered poisoning. just it is know for it's hardiness.
15-10-2009, 04:44 PM
Would a heard of hired? goats and/ or a flame thrower do the job?
15-10-2009, 06:39 PM
yes goats do work against lantana.
does anyone know if dorper sheep will help control lantana? I am currently concentrating on clearing lantana to allow me to fix fences
15-10-2009, 09:50 PM
The U.S. EPA states...
http://www.epa.gov/OGWDW/contaminants/d ... phosa.html (http://www.epa.gov/OGWDW/contaminants/dw_contamfs/glyphosa.html)
Short-term: EPA has found glyphosate to potentially cause the following health effects when people are exposed to it at levels above the MCL for relatively short periods of time: congestion of the lungs; increased breathing rate.
Long-term: Glyphosate has the potential to cause the following effects from a lifetime exposure at levels above the MCL: kidney damage, reproductive effects.
Thats without taking into consideration susceptability factors uch as illness or exposure to children.
If all agricultural chemicals and pesticides done was their intended use with long term potential to cause cancer in the user, i'd probably use them myself. We all have to die from something after all.
However, when the potential is their for my actions today to cause reproductive problems, decreased immunity, cancer, kidney damage and any known problem or disability related to chemical use I owe it to my kids to say No.
http://www.for-wild.org/download/roundu ... osate.html (http://www.for-wild.org/download/roundupmyth/glyphosate.html)
Both plants and animals use PEP (phosphoenolpyruvate) in all their cells as a core molecule in their life processes. Research has shown that part of the glyphosate molecule mimics a part of the PEP molecule and thereby blocks its action in a metabolic pathway that is specific to plants (the shikimate pathway). What has not yet been determined is whether this mimicry of the PEP molecule can be accomplished in other metabolic pathways that are common in all animal cells.
15-10-2009, 10:13 PM
I was reading the Grass Roots mag this week - the current one. Someone was looking for an "organic" way to control some weed or other - and were sharing that they had "discovered" glyphosate painted on with a paint roller worked well.
Organic my - err - elbow! Worse still is that the publishers let it get to press.
16-10-2009, 05:22 AM
this thread is getting hyjacked a bit now, but what is it that is being said by some here?
if me and my lovely snip off the top of nutgrass in a place away from the garden and where no one walks and there are no kids around and we paint those freshly cut plants using an artists paint brush we are no longer organic (though that has been corrupted a long time ago) and we are just as bad as those who spray if around place taking no regard to their neighbours or others? and when we where on the property we used one of those atomiser bottles you can buy to apply a fine spray from sitting on a tractor onto the growing tip of the grounsel(on 70 acres grounsel seed that washed in from higher up from gov reserves i might add, mind you only the grounsel died none of the tall grass did) and those plants died then again we committed some cardinal sin would that be correct, there was no over spray there was no spray drift??
and if a certified organic farmer up gatton way riding on horseback dolops whatever poison he is using on the growing tips of lanatans bush and it dies he too then is just as bad as the indescriminate sprayer of the stuff, though the lantana is away from his regular farming area, because he feels he should be improving the habitat of the areas of his property that he doesn't farm, lump us altogether hey the good the bad and the ever so ugly?
as we can't realy have eutopia and get rid of those nasty weeds which the local council will come in and spray with knapsacks or other if you don't get control, then we need to think a little wider.
as for the goat thingy when we were first considering tha tproperty full of lantana we too reseached about using goats and goat fanciers said that lantna was toxic to goats.
16-10-2009, 06:07 AM
I understand your reasoning Len, you've made that point in other threads. If society practiced what you do we WOULD live in eutopia.
Unfortunately, cowboys don't just ride horseback.
I don't spray synthetic chemicals. I also don't support farmers who blatantly kill & drill. Thats my stand. Thats my opinion.
Someone told me ages ago that permaculture was a system you could set up in a micro environment that copies nature. Its something that, if set up correctly can look after itself without any hands on work. The owner could take a 6 month holiday and come home to happy chooks, rabbits and a crop of vegies... In practice thats probably no likely to happen. Unless it was a macro-micro environment.
But with consideration to that point, how could we set up a self managed natural environment if synthetic means are required to eliminate pests or weeds?
16-10-2009, 06:58 AM
I understand your reasoning Len, you've made that point in other threads. If society practiced what you do we WOULD live in eutopia.
not sure what we do is eutopia might be good responsible management? but then you should be targetting the education of the community not possibly bagging another wise sound practise. i've been around spraying lawns fo weeds for a long time now in my past started with my father. we no longer do that, so long as there is green stuff growing on the ground that is our lawn weeds and all, that was from my organic practises long before i stumbled into permaculture.
simply we probably can't when you look at the weeds we are wanting to not only manage but erradicate for at present without any biological controls in sight these weeds namely lantana and grounsel will simply take over and smother all else out except for the mature trees that is.
ok the cactus has good control not erracicated as the farmer knows he has to let those few live to keep the biological control the cacto blaster surviving, hence good control without erradication. like encouraging good bugs into the garden hey you need to sustain some bad bug damage for the good bugs to prolificate so they form a balance. but then there is a big difference between woody weeds and cactus weeds.
we need to accept chemical controls in a responsible manner, not just a blanket no no no!! lantana and grounsel need erradication. pulling lanatan has merit but then there is still all that viable seed in the area, and if it is a good cover of lantana the soil can then be left open to errosion. ground covers or soil stabilisers can't be grown over night. we also pulled yong grounsel when the soil was damp and when detected very young say no more than .5m high.
we most likley buy a litre of glypho' every 8 or 10 years or so, the shareholders won't be impressed and certainly not enough to keep the company in business.
16-10-2009, 07:36 AM
wise sound practise
... was i bagging ?
16-10-2009, 07:44 AM
it was a general statement eric,
those who are holistically anti glypho' make it known, and for the record i am on the anti side especially not wanting to support said company just what else is there in certain circumstances.
16-10-2009, 07:46 AM
Here is a question...
If you are not going to use the land for production, what is the benefit of natives over introduced species? Aren't species like lantana and whatever else that are 'invading' really just filling a need?. Should we really be trying to hang on to native ecosystems in disturbed sites, is it even possible to return those disturbed sites to pre-european style systems? Won't nature find a new balance? Are we really so naive to think that we can fight nature in what she really wants to do in wild areas? Why fight nature it if it is just a matter of principle or paradigm?
OK, so that is a lot of questions not just one, and probably enough cannon fodder to see this thread in to the 7 pages territory (as if the chemicals-or-not debate won't send it there anyway :P ).
16-10-2009, 08:24 AM
Thats a good point Grahame, on all counts...
16-10-2009, 09:20 AM
Sorry - didn't realized that I had thrown a grenade into a volatile mix!
My objection to the magazine story was that it presented glyphosate as an organic option. It's not.
That's not to say that it can't be used in a safe and appropriate manner.
16-10-2009, 12:38 PM
I guess it comes down to the user and their knowledge or intentions.
I guess sarcasticly, could we also say - heroin, cocaine, drunken drivers, murderers and thieves, though illegal could still be used in a safe and appropriate manner ?
Point being, how do we take chemicals out of the food chain and away from cowboys ?
Education has been mentioned. We need to educate the community on chemical use. Unfortunately education doesn't always work. I can remember a grade 6 ( i think ) subject on law, right and wrong etc, Of the kids who were in my class that year, One is in jail for Armed robbery, one died of a drug overdose, one is in jail for selling speed. One died as a result of drink driving accident (her fault).
How do we educated the uneducatable ?
There could be a ban on who can buy it... didn't work for smokes though... kids just get adults to buy them?
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