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ground cover plant that will out compete poison oak?  RSS feed

 
Meryt Helmer
Posts: 395
Location: west marin, bay area california. sandy loam, well drained, acidic soil and lots of shade
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I'm not sure if this is the right place to post about this

I have poison oak on my property and as the title says I am wondering if I can find something that will out compete it on paths. luckily no one in my family is allergic to it but many people have looked at it and confirmed it looks just like poison oak and I have many friends that did not become allergic to it until their mid 30's and I just turned 35! I pulled it from all the paths but it will continue to find it's way places for as long as their are critters pooping out poison oak seeds flying by I guess. I am pondering white clover int he problem areas but am uncertain if that is a good idea or not. for now I am spraying the plants that are around with mostly vinegar that has some salt and soap added and that makes the poison oak very unhappy. we have very good drainage here so I am not too worried about the salt and it is a small amount only on the poison oak.

anyone have any thoughts on some good plants that would make the poison oak not do so well?
 
Bill Ramsey
Posts: 86
Location: SW Georgia, zone 8b
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I want to bump this one a bit. I don't have any advice other than the vinegar that you already use but I'm hoping to glean some info on options since my place is likewise herbally enhanced. An area that I'm trying to grow fruit and berries on has plenty of those berries already. :/
 
Meryt Helmer
Posts: 395
Location: west marin, bay area california. sandy loam, well drained, acidic soil and lots of shade
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right now I am thinking I will grow mint and thyme in that area. but I have not tried it yet.
 
dan long
Posts: 272
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How about killer mulch? You could put down six inches of wood chips in your paths. That will smother anything underneath and its coarse enough that stuff probably wont germinate even when birds poop out seeds right on top.

As far as ground cover, what kind of weeds take over around where you live (other than poison oak)? If i were trying to push out a weed in the PNW for instance, I would sow dandelions, plantains or clover. They are all near impossible to get rid of, low growing (wont compete for light if your growing them in paths) and best of all, don't sting. Mint would work too, but it will eventually creep into your vegetable beds, even if you grow it in the paths.
 
Meryt Helmer
Posts: 395
Location: west marin, bay area california. sandy loam, well drained, acidic soil and lots of shade
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none of the wild weeds here really take over. the main ground cover we have are wild strawberries which are tasty although very small and often the wildlife eats them before I do. there is already wild strawberries where the poison oak is but the poison oak is out competing all other plants in the areas where it is a problem. i do have a large pile of wood chips I can try and smother it with. I also tried spraying it with vinegar with a few drops of dish soap and a little bit of salt and poison oak really hates that but it needs to be done daily to be very effective.

I am thinking that in my herb garden the thyme is doing so well and that mint i known for taking over and in this area if mint took over I would be very happy. so perhaps I will heavily mulch the path and then line it with mint and thyme and some other low growing herbs
 
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