Anyone that has had a run-in with thistle around their yard knows how tough this broadleaf weed is and how difficult it is to completely eradicate. With it’s deep and wide spreading root mass and sharp pointed prickly foliage, it will not pull out of the ground easily (or completely) without a fight. The only effective and proven way we have found to completely kill mature thistle (in particular) is by applying a selective or non-selective (site dependent) systemic herbicide directly to it’s foliage. Often times several spot herbicide applications are needed over the course of many growing seasons (3 to 5 years) to completely kill thistle found growing in a regularly maintained lawn (in particular).
Tips on controlling and keeping thistle out of your lawn and landscape.
- Thistle can have a biennial or perennial life cycle (specific thistle variety dependent)
- Never plant a new lawn or create new gardens without first completely eliminating any/all resilient thistle plants first.
- When applying a systemic herbicide, allow plenty of time (4-8 weeks) for the liquid herbicide (selective or non-selective – site dependent) to translocate through the entire plant (from foliage to root mass) thus ensuring a complete kill.
- It is much easier to chemically eradicate thistle when there are no other desirable plants (manicured turf grass, ground cover, vegetables, etc.) located in close proximity to the unwanted weed.
- Always eradicate thistle found in lawn areas AND adjacent plant bed spaces. Since thistle spreads by seed, rhizome and/or cut root segments (variety of thistle dependent) it will continue to spread anywhere it can unless totally eliminated.
- Thistle seed can remain viable in the soil for up to 20 years!!
- If you have a bird feeder in your yard, try to avoid using bird feed that includes thistle seed.
- Continue to monitor your property for young thistle plants and try to manually remove them whenever possible. If manual removal is no longer a feasible option, spot treat them with a systemic selective (lawn areas) or non-selective (areas where no other desirable vegetation is located) herbicide before the plant is allowed to flower and set seed.
- Canada thistle (in particular) is considered to be a noxious perennial weed in Illinois and should be controlled by the land owner whenever found (Illinois Noxious Weed Law – 505 ILCS 100/)
Please be sure to contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. with any questions you may have or to schedule an on-site consultation. Thank you for visiting and have a great day!