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bindweed and quackgrass holding me back  RSS feed

 
Posts: 225
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Varina, in my observation the rye kept the bindweed out during it's growth and the bindweed didn't seem to recapture that area for about 12 months after cutting the rye.

Re trees and other plants going into the subsoil, it depends on the tree. Most fruit trees have a fibrous root system which is shallow but some trees and plants have taproots. These are often the fast growing pioneer species which dont need a good topsoil.
 
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Location: SE Missouri, Zone 7a
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Not pigs, Geese. Lots and lots of geese. They turn any area I have with grass into dirt (and poop on it tons) and then I go plant something there. Works pretty well.
You can train geese to eat most weeds. Just feed them what you want them to eat as goslings and they develop a taste for it. I would think they would eat these two although I don't have them here, thank goodness!
 
Posts: 1947
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One observation: A few years ago (3? 4?) I was overzealous in planting garlic and I left a good sized patch of it alone. It became quite bushy, with each clove trying to grow its own head the next year. Last year I used and gave away a bunch of the thinnings, but it was so thick that this spring you can't tell I thinned it at all. In this area there are some weeds coming up, and some of it is bindweed, but the difference between the amount of bindweed nearby and the bindweed in the garlic is significant. Just an observation.

Another: a tiny shiny bug is eating some of the bindweed leaves. I am not sure what it is. It is only doing a little damage, a few holes here and there. Still, it lightens my heart to see that it has a vulnerability.

A significant thought: Some meditation on the topic has led me to the realization that it is not bindweed and quackgrass holding me back, as the thread suggests, but my FEAR of bindweed and quackgrass. Along with fear of failure, fear of harming the field, fear of lack of funds, all sorts of fear. I looked at "One Straw Revolution" by Masanobu Fukokua for inspiration, and I found myself changing my attitude. He talks in the book about how he failed in many ways before he came to the methods of farming he was using when he wrote the book. He lived a relatively isolated life for 20 years, with the people around him scoffing at his methods, before bringing the ideas to the world in a large scale way. So here I am, having dabbled in gardening for 15 years, farming for 3 with a gradual learning and implementation of permaculture/natural farming ideas. I have many failures ahead of me and that is ok! Silly me for forgetting that. Even if the bindweed overtakes everything, I can observe that and learn from it. AND If it did, I am sure some weevil or beetle could tip the balance back. All is not lost, all is never lost.

Of course I do want to encourage the other plants which are more useful to me (I have done plenty of looking into the human uses of bindweed- it is mostly just a poison It is NOT ashwaganda) and keep the bindweed in the background. The quackgrass is so firmly entrenched I don't have any hope that I will eradicate it, but I will work on overcoming it too. This thread has been very useful already, and I want to understand these plants better .
 
Posts: 299
Location: Portland, Oregon Maritime, temperate, zone 7-8.
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Very wise, Matu.

I had quite bad quackgrass in a community garden plot. There were thornless blackberries as well. I let the black berries grow all they wanted, and put on 3 feet of leaves from the huge leaf pile we had available and the blackberries shaded out the quackgrass, and the humusy soil was so loose that, as I said before, I could pull out several 3 foot long strands at at time. It became a non threat.I never toatally wiped it out. All grasses are edible, so quajkgrass is just a wild form of wheat grass. So you can juice it.

If bindweed were edible (it is not) we would be in good shape.

How about using a chicken tractor? I actually know very little about them, but I think they are used to get rid of weeds.

This is great about weeds as soil indicators - and bindweed and quackgrass both grow where there is hardpan. Weeds as soil indicators

Good luck,
Panela
 
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Matu Collins wrote:One observation: A few years ago (3? 4?) I was overzealous in planting garlic and I left a good sized patch of it alone. It became quite bushy, with each clove trying to grow its own head the next year. Last year I used and gave away a bunch of the thinnings, but it was so thick that this spring you can't tell I thinned it at all. In this area there are some weeds coming up, and some of it is bindweed, but the difference between the amount of bindweed nearby and the bindweed in the garlic is significant. Just an observation.
Another: a tiny shiny bug is eating some of the bindweed leaves. I am not sure what it is. It is only doing a little damage, a few holes here and there. Still, it lightens my heart to see that it has a vulnerability.
A significant thought: Some meditation on the topic has led me to the realization that it is not bindweed and quackgrass holding me back, as the thread suggests, but my FEAR of bindweed and quackgrass. Along with fear of failure, fear of harming the field, fear of lack of funds, all sorts of fear. I looked at "One Straw Revolution" by Masanobu Fukokua for inspiration, and I found myself changing my attitude. He talks in the book about how he failed in many ways before he came to the methods of farming he was using when he wrote the book. He lived a relatively isolated life for 20 years, with the people around him scoffing at his methods, before bringing the ideas to the world in a large scale way. So here I am, having dabbled in gardening for 15 years, farming for 3 with a gradual learning and implementation of permaculture/natural farming ideas. I have many failures ahead of me and that is ok! Silly me for forgetting that. Even if the bindweed overtakes everything, I can observe that and learn from it. AND If it did, I am sure some weevil or beetle could tip the balance back. All is not lost, all is never lost.
Of course I do want to encourage the other plants which are more useful to me (I have done plenty of looking into the human uses of bindweed- it is mostly just a poison It is NOT ashwaganda) and keep the bindweed in the background. The quackgrass is so firmly entrenched I don't have any hope that I will eradicate it, but I will work on overcoming it too. This thread has been very useful already, and I want to understand these plants better .



Matu,
Very interesting. I have never seen anything eat the bindweed, ever.
Maybe I'll try different sorts of alliums in among the bindweed and see what happens. I certainly have enough bindweed slope to do so!
Good attitude to take. Fear can be a defining factor in life, but sometimes that's not a good thing.
I haven't run across Fukokua's book yet, but I will look for it.
Nice to know, and I totally agree. Anything that people use to extract to treat cancer is generally a poison. Not to mention that folk practitioners in remote places of the world often practice unsafe medicine. Having read some of the stuff people used to use as medicine <shudder> its amazing that the human race has survived. (Looks like you saw my post on ashwaghanda, lol. Which is according to any science I've seen almost entirely safe. Ashwaghanda, yes. Bindweed? How desperate would I have to be? Let me think... Well, I'd eat it before I ate poison hemlock.)

Wow, I think I really do need to start copying all this info. Right, so: bindweed is obviously one of nature's tools to a.) prevent erosion by carpeting the ground, b.) pushing through hardpan and preventing further climatic degradation, c.) to drive the humans insane so that they give up and leave entirely (pfft!)
So, I got to wondering: a.) Is bindweed also an accumulator?, b.) if so, what does it accumulate?, c.) do accumulators mostly grow on ground poor in the elements that they accumulate?, d.) if so, would correcting the imbalance with natural amendments have an effect of reducing the occurrence and growth of that particular weed? Well, I really got to wondering about this after reading that every thistle accumulates Fe (iron), and most of them only accumulate iron. But of course my wondering quickly moved on to bindweed. I have no info on that for bindweed, but I will look for powdered iron to use on a thistle-y corner of the lawn and see what chances.


Pamela: I would have no hesitation eating quackgrass if I was starving, and my garden had been eaten to the ground by locusts. lol. Well, I've been known to pull out the stalk and munch on the sweet end. Quite good, but not my choice of a steady diet or even a supplement.
Thanks again.

Hugh,
Alright. Darn and double darn, but I will look into this some more if I ever have the chance. It's just so tantalizing.
On the trees <nod> like redwoods. Makes sense. Never really thought about it. Almost the opposite of redwoods and sea oats, though, since their long taproots are for stabilizing mountainsides and sand beaches, respectively.

Katya,
I didn't know that, but geese are smart. Wonder if I could convince the wild Canadian geese to wander over and eat my bindweed?
 
Pamela Melcher
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There is a whole nother thread on this subject: "Please reassure me - bindweed and thistles."

I suggest juicing the quackgrass. Grasses absorb almost all minerals. That may be part of why they are such survivors. I would guess that it is. It's free food high in minerals.

I have made thistle smoothies and they are great. All prickers liquified. They taste a little like cucumbers. All thistles benefit the liver and are edible.

Sorry - Bindweed is not a mineral accumulator. From another great thread "Learning to read weeds": Dynamic Accumulator Weeds

Bindweed is good for developing patience. And look, all these nice people you did not even know, or did not know cared about you, do care enough to make suggestions.

Abundance for all.

Pamela Melcher
 
master pollinator
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Varina Lakewood wrote:
I haven't run across Fukokua's book yet, but I will look for it.



"One Straw Revolution" seems to be available free on the internet in various places. I believe this might be a link to files of it: http://www.filestube.com/t/the+one+straw+revolution


It is also in print as an actual book.
 
Hugh Hawk
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Pamela: I don't know if bindweed not being on the oregonbd website list of dynamic accumulators means it definitely is not an accumulator. I am sure that list is not exhaustive. Given bindweed's extremely deep roots, I'd be very surprised if it did not accumulate something. It sure generates a lot of biomass!

Matu: how about trying a garlic spray on part of your bindweed? I.e. crush some garlic, strain then spray onto the leaves. No idea if it will have any effect, but it seems there is something the garlic exudes which repels the weed. I have read about this before.
 
Matu Collins
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I'll try the garlic spray, I have plenty of garlic!

I never did figure out if the pulling program is pulling just the tops off or if it includes the roots as well. Does anyone know?
 
Varina Lakewood
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Pamela:
Yes, I know. My mom blends thistles into her smoothies. I also know that grass is great for you, but I cannot eat it in any amount without getting serious gag reaction, a reaction that usually indicates sensitivity for me, so unfortunately, juicing is not an option. I do use the quackgrass clippings as organic matter when making raised beds or otherwise digging it into the soil. I think I may try the idea of using bindweed as tomato ties, too. I used vinca ties on iris and it did fine, and bindweed is even more flexible, so, yay, free ties!
I did go down that other thread, too. But this thread seems a little more helpful for my purposes, no one suggesting outright poison here. <lol> I really do appreciate all the feedback and advice. All your advice and links are certainly appreciated. <Please bask in my admiration.>
My thoughts on this, are that I really want to understand how these weeds work (like Matu), because once you understand something thoroughly, its much easier to deal with or work around.
It's disappointing that bindweed isn't listed as an accumulator, but I wonder how much research has been done on it? Well, if it isn't, no biggie. I just want to understand what it is.

Tyler:
That's awesome! Thank you VERY much!

Hugh:
I agree, but even if it is not <shrug> its got to have something going on here that we are missing. Nature doesn't do extraneous, just overabundant. <laugh> I had another thought today on its uses in nature, sadly along the same lines, but eh.
I noticed ants making their nest among bindweed roots. This nest had been moved once because I pulled out the bindweed in the previous one. (Poor ants.) But they had made a palace of the stuff. Fascinating. Also, was reading the other thread and the bit about burying poison balls to kill bindweed <shudder> where even the bindweed across the road died. But it struck me, after considering both bits of info: bindweed both provides soil structure and holds the soil. After all, they die back in winter, so they couldn't be holding the soil to prevent wind/water erosion with JUST their leaves. The vast root systems must shuttle water and nutrients where needed. Mushrooms do this too, but share with other plants. Sea oats do this to hold beaches. Redwoods do this to hold mountains and hillsides. (Redwoods, by the way, are locally considered a terrible tree to try to clear, because they come back from the stumps unless the stumps are treated or burned.) Not entirely sure where I'm going with this thought, but I feel that there is something there.
 
Hugh Hawk
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Varina, interesting document here discussing the tree rooting patterns in different soil conditions. See table on p.6. Soil type 4 is for 'impervious subsoils'. Interesting to see which plants root deeply in this situation (best being Japanese Larch - up to 2.5m).

http://www.forestry.gov.uk/pdf/fcin078.pdf/$file/fcin078.pdf
 
Varina Lakewood
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Hawk,
Hmn. That is VERY interesting. Especially how well cherry and apple do.

I really, really wish that two of my worst bindweed areas weren't in the public view, aka, my front lawn and the side lawn->flowerbed. It is very discouraging because there are so many things I can't even try to get rid of it with. Such as rye grass (though I am looking for a short cultivar) because city ordinance requires that lawns be no more than eight inches. (My mom suggested that jerusalem artichoke might also have an alleopathic effect, but I don't know, and am unwilling to grow the stuff. But I may just look into the sunflower family more, since she said she thought they were in that family.) And the side lawn/bed is close enough to the foundation that I can't put anything that might damage it there. <sighs> But apple and cherry ...makes me wonder how peach, apricot, and plum compare, since they are all more or less related. Any of those would probably work well enough for that area.

Matu,
I pull the tops off and as much of the root as possible. How much I get depends on how large an area+how much energy I've got that day+weather (on 80+ days, I definitely get less of the root! lol). I figure to do the most amount of damage possible per the least amount of effort needed. Pulling more root is more economical, but not if staying out there to do it kills you.
 
Hugh Hawk
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Varina: Bearing in mind those would be 'seedling' apple & cherry (grown in situ from seed), not grafted ones. Re sunflower family, sunflowers themselves are reported to have a mild allelopathic effect. Could be a possibility but not if you want something low.
 
Pamela Melcher
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Well, folks, now I, too, have a bindweed problem. I decided to go check where there was some last summer and, WOW! There is lots more now. I was naive about this stuff.

I asked a good, experienced permie friend about this and he said it is one of the hardest to get rid of. His further suggestion follows my description below of what I must do before I can implement his suggestion.

Fortunately it has not gone to seed yet.

It was very bad in one area, and I carpeted that 2 years ago with many layers of corrugated cardboard and it has not come back there, but it has spread from there beyond a large pile of compost that I unwisely put near it.

So my plan is to cut it all down to the ground with the grass that it is intermingled with, and lay cardboard down thick there. My experienced permie friend suggested that beyond the area where I cover it with think cardboard, there will be an area surrounding that which it will try to grow into. He suggested putting down cardboard there as well, and every so often lifting it up and cutting back what will be growing there. I will know right where it is and stop it from growing further.

I thought of a variant of that. The former owners had put down lots of weed cloth, which I have been removing. In places they put little pebbles over it, and I noticed that I could easily lift up the pebbles with the weed cloth to gather them up to remove them. So I will get some wood chips, which we can get for free from tree doctors, and put them on the weed cloth to make a path around the area that I put the thick cardboard on. I will put a thick layer of weedy mulch below the weed cloth to start worms going, the first step of breaking up the hard pan. Plus this will lure the bindweed to grow there. Following my friend's suggestion, every so often I will pull up the weed cloth and wood chips and eliminate the bindweed underneath. I will cut some plant ties, maybe make a small basket, and then dry the bindweed until it is brittle and snaps and use it as mulch. I will add to the weedy mulch under the weed cloth, replace it and the wood chips and start the cycle over.

The area where it is growing is large. I will make a large raised bed there. I will put stepping stones at the level of the top of the raised bed. This works very well. The larger raised bed has more water retaining properties than a smaller one. I will lay the stepping stones down on top of the raised bed so there will be a stepping stone path, but no depression for a path from which water evaporates. This
dramatically increases the productivity of the raised bed. I am amazed that I have not seen anyone else doing this or talking about it.

I am getting excited about possibly discovering a good way to control bindweed.

I like a challenge.

There is another area that had bad bind weed when we moved in 2 years ago in late June. It had gone to seed. It pretty much had engulfed a 5 foot high shrub that I find unattractive. The next door neighbor then, without my permission or knowledge, sprayed through the fence onto our side of the fence to kill the bindweed. Not cool. He almost killed the shrub. The shrub still looks sickly, and there is no bindweed growing under the shrub, although it had gone to seed. So I guess he zapped it quite badly. I think it would be prudent to lay down thick cardboard, covered with mulch, under that shrub. I plan to plant a vine near it, where plants are healthy, and let the vine cover and be supported by the shrub. Maybe Maypop, maybe Mashua.

I will let you know any significant results of these experiments.

Bindweed does have pretty flowers.

Some good news, I also checked a place where there was one bindweed plant which did go to seed last year, and there are no baby bindweeds there. I pulled the plant last year. It was rather small and I got all the roots. Other plants choked out any baby bindweeds. Grass, violets, thistles and bedstraw choked it out. I make smoothies of thistles and bedstraw, so I was happy to see them.

I believe that I heard that buckwheat is alelopathic, so it might suppress bindweed. It is a summer cover crop.

Varina, Can't you grow the rye grass and cut it when it is 8" tall? It will just look like grass. You could cut it that high with a scythe - easy to do.

So, on we go.
Good luck, folks.

Pamela Melcher
 
Varina Lakewood
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Hugh,
Well, I was thinking the low rye grass for the lawn.
I don't want grass on the side bed. For one thing, its a rough slope and a pain to mow. But low isn't a particular concern there in the way of flowers, since it is intended for flowers and possibly trees/non-invasive fruit bushes. The restriction being low trees, since we get nasty winds and would prefer to keep our garage if one of them blows over. But, hehe, I was wondering where to try starting my apple seeds! Although, no, I would have to start them elsewhere and transplant them in when they were big enough to take some drought. We never water over there. I don't have any cherry, peach, or apricot seeds, but I do have several wild(?) plum seeds.
If we get the time this year, my mom and I have decided to try layers of leaves and pine needles on that slope (try changing the ph and tilth, and see what happens). I might even get vicious and dump vinegar all over (this after spending yesterday hoeing off and denuding that slope of bindweed before it could set seed and add more plants to its throng.) Well, probably not, but I will try planting various things like alliums, marigold, wild sunflower, and see if they+leaves/needles have any effect. (Not the jerusalem artichoke or the walnut tree that my mom was talking about also being alleopathic. lol)
I do know that part of the reason for our 'hardpan' is a high water table, but I think mostly its the high clay content, since our house is on a slight rise, part of a natural slope but partially built up, probably to make sure the house was on the level. Annoyingly, bindweed grows most enthusiastically where we've disturbed the soil, loosening it.

Edit:
Pamela,
Well, I don't know. I'm sure I could, but people keep saying that the rye 'smothers' out the bindweed. My hope would be that it's the roots creating the effect, not the height, but I would still like a lower growing variety if I can find it for the lawn, because sometimes the lawn doesn't get mowed very often, and it would be nice not to have to worry about sections of the lawn being 3ft taller than the rest of the lawn <laugh>.
Also, I'm thinking about a scythe, but will probably keep thinking about it for a couple years because a.) I'm darn poor, and b.) Sometimes I am extremely clutzy. So, for now, am stuck with a mower that only my dad is strong enough to start. In the meantime, I have my trusty plant scissors if I really, really can't stand the lawn.
Bindweed is such a pain. I mean, not only can its seeds stay viable for up to 50yrs in the soil!!!, it can also set seed after being picked if it has flowers. So frustrating to lose all that biomass because its certain to have MORE seeds coming out of it.
Hopefully your bindweed is less tenacious than ours, which happily grows through cardboard and groundcover cloth!
 
Pamela Melcher
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Check this out!!! I do not know if this is legit or not - interested in any feedback on the legitimacy of this. It is the first I had heard of it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XaDGLaEff-A

Pamela
 
Pamela Melcher
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More about bindweed extract as a cancer cure, from another Permies.com thread:

http://www.prostate.net/prostate-health-supplements-a-z/convolvulus-arvensis-bindweed/

It looks like this is for real.

Pamela
 
Pamela Melcher
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This from a post by Kelda Miller.

"Another great thing I just learned from reading Susun Weed's "Healing Wise": While growing, dandelions exhale ethylene gas, which can slow down growth of nearby plants"

Maybe dandelions would discourage bindweed?

I have plenty of dandelions to experiment with...

Pamela Melcher
 
Pamela Melcher
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Even chicken tractors are not the ultimate solution for bindweed. This from another thread, a comment by Kathleen Sanderson:

"I have one more observation about chicken tractors. If the chickens are moved quickly, as with intensively managed grazing of larger species, it seems to encourage grass. If they are left on one spot for too long, though, they can pretty much kill off the grass, and then you will end up with deep-rooted perennial weeds. I've got bindweed (wild morning glory, a serious pest here) and dandelions, among other such plants, coming up now in some of the spots where the chicken tractors sat for several weeks at a time in the winter. (Other spots were heavily bedded with leaves from a friend's lawn, and nothing is coming up there -- I plan to use those spots for onions.)"

I'm really trying to master this bindweed problem.

Cheers!

Pamela Melcher
 
Varina Lakewood
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Varina Lakewood wrote: Almost the opposite of redwoods and sea oats, though, since their long taproots are for stabilizing mountainsides and sand beaches, respectively.



<Headsmack.> Redwoods do NOT have taproots. This is what I get for typing when I'm tired. Sorry.
 
Varina Lakewood
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Just read this:

"Established stands of lambs quarter and kochia can prevent bindweed from emerging."
 
Pamela Melcher
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Varina - YAY!!!

I am interest to hear more about that!

Where did you read that?

Thanks.

Abundance for all!

Pamela Melcher
 
Varina Lakewood
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In the Colorado Gardener, our local gardening paper.
Annoyingly, that was all that was said about it. But hey, worth a try. It was under the sub-title: Use some to combat others. Under the title: Handling Weeds, the Willow Way Permaculture Way.
 
Pamela Melcher
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Thanks, Varina - Lambsquarters are very tasty. I have lot of lambsquarters seed that I have collected, so I will try this and report back.

Abundance for All!

Pamela Melcher
 
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If morning glories are more desirable than bindweed, would they help starve out the bindweed due to their similarities? You can get thousands of morning glory seeds for not much, so I would think they are probably pretty prolific on their own.

I have some bindweed in spots that I let get out of control last year in. Now I am doing the repeated pull up method, and have stopped seeing shoots in 1 small area so far (the area I started in). I hope I can be successful elsewhere. I also didn't mind pulling up the things the bindweed were climbing up in these areas, and I was also building a little mound for compost in one area.
 
Matu Collins
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I saw the first flowers today and started to panic just a tiny bit. Trying to remind myself that all plants are serving a purpose, and that I am trying to "perfect the farmer" more than just mere plant growing. Sigh.

I have also noticed the connection with ants. It seems like the ants like the soil that bindweed is in. Ants are mostly everywhere, though, and so is bindweed.
 
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Matu Collins wrote:

L. Jones wrote:I suspect you need animals, but I don't know which ones would work best. In general, some sort of portable fence to contain a high density of livestock that eats the stuff down to nothing (or better yet, some sort of stock that considers it a delicacy, but I also don't know if that exists or what it might be for those weeds - pigs, perhaps?)



Pigs do eat bindweed roots, I have considered it before. I am daunted by the price of fencing and the damage to established trees and plants if pigs get out. Everyone I know who has had pigs has had them get out. Maybe it is the answer though. I will look into it more. Anyone have experience keeping pigs in? How expensive was it, I wonder? We don't eat much pork, but I imagine we could learn to...



have you seen the pallet fences in pauls video?
only cost is gas to pick up free pallets and nails to nail em together
they work good for pigs and goats as they dont have any room along the fence to build up speed

also, while you have it, bindweed is a medicine... that is if were talking the same bindweed, bindweed is wild morning glory from my understanding
 
Matu Collins
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Hm, pallet fencing, that is interesting. Cheap, certainly. I fear escaping pigs doing lots of damage all around. I have one friend whose pigs used to get out on a regular basis, and one who says hers only got out once. I have 22 month old twin boys running wild around here, and I think my anxiety about rampaging piggers will keep me from getting them at least until my little fellas can shimmy up an apple tree. Piglets are one thing, a full grown hog is another thing altogether.

My bindweed, convolulus arvensis or field bindweed, is in the same family as morning glory and sweet potato. I am less acquainted with hedge bindweed (no complaints) but the warnings from herbalists about its toxicity have made me wary of using it for medicine. I accept that I will not eradicate it, so if the medicinal need arises I will have some. I have lots of other medicinal plants I would like to encourage, but if I turn away for a day or two, the bindweed is choking them. Some places on the farm are better than others. I have given up on trying to dig it up by the roots anywhere but in the kitchen garden, it seems to thrive in disturbed soil. It also seems to be able to travel under mulch quite far quite quickly.
 
Varina Lakewood
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Noah Figg wrote:If morning glories are more desirable than bindweed, would they help starve out the bindweed due to their similarities? You can get thousands of morning glory seeds for not much, so I would think they are probably pretty prolific on their own.


I would recommend against it unless what you want is a sea of large-flowered bindweed. From what I've read, morning glories and bindweed cross quite easily, and the offspring is tougher and more aggressive.
That being said, I have trouble picturing something more aggressive. (I know there are, but...) Someone told me that the furthest a bindweed root had been traced was two miles. <Blink. ... Aaaargh!> It certainly traveled just fine 15ft across my lawn last year. This year I am patiently digging out the runners/stolons, and pulling the main section. And next year I'll back that nasty lawn colony into a corner and steadily prune the sneaky little suckers down.


Matu: I too have noted the ants. They act like bindweed roots are palaces, don't they? Also, I think that it might be because disturbing bindweed triggers its attempt to spread more aggressively that it seems to thrive in disturbed soils. (Like mint family.) Mine thrives equally, though, once its growth is triggered. I think that <here at least> it grows taller in disturbed soils simply because its easier for it to push its expansive growth through the looser tilth.
 
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Matu, you may wish to know that Field Bindweed is the Himalayan Ashwaghanda! At least you can put some to good use this way, right?

In relevant part:
"...Ayurvedic physicians in the Himalayan tradition make used of Field Bindweed (Convolvulus arvensis) as Ashwagandha."

http://www.toddcaldecott.com/index.php/herbs/learning-herbs/395-ashwagandha
 
Pamela Melcher
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Lisa,

What you say about field bindweed being used as ashwaganda is VERY interesting.

Do you have further information about this besides this article?

This is the first I have heard of this. It is my understanding that field bindweed contains toxins. I want to be cautious.

I have been interested in wild edible plants and herbs for decades, and this is the first that I have heard of this. Of course, my years of experience could have been missing this important truth.

Life has taught me the value of an open mind.

I asked John Kallas, a very well informed teacher about wild plants as food and medicine, whether wild morning glory is edible and he said no. I did not specifically ask him if it is used as medicine. John Kallas' website

I also have LOTS of bindweed and ashwaganda is a very good herb for me, so I have a lot of interest in this subject.

I was about to do a massive bindweed eradication project - the buds are forming and now is the time to act if I do not want to have a much worse problem on my hands. There is lots of it, and if it is not useful as medicine, I want to quickly remove it and not be careful with the roots. I had planned to start removing the bindweed today.

Thank you for your post, and I look forward to reading your reply. I hope you reply soon!

Health and Abundance for All!
Pamela Melcher
 
Matu Collins
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I have heard this before, but it is not true, ashwaghanda is another plant. I have had it fresh and in tea, and it looks and smells different.

Arvensis can be used as a purgative, a diuretic and a laxative, but it is also quite toxic, so I would use other safer herbs for these. The leaves can be briefly chewed and applied to a bug bite or sting, but since plantain is also good at this, less toxic and abundant here, I would not chew bindweed for that purpose. Any eradication effort you use will have limited success, so I wouldn't worry about making sure to keep it around for medicinal purposes. By all means, read up extensively before using it.
 
Pamela Melcher
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More on Convolvulus arvensis and ashwaganda. http://oneearthherbs.squarespace.com/important-herbs/ashwagandha-root-withania-somnifera-convolvulus-species.html

From the above article:

"The Convolvulus variety of ashwagandha root is a perennial bushy plant with white roots that is usually found in tropical areas. It commonly grows at the base of wheat, spiraling around the stems, and Dr. Mana and I located specimens within minutes when we searched wheat farms in Nepal."

Before proceeding to take the bindweed that grows in my yard as I would take ashwaganda, I want to be sure that it is the same plant that they use in the Himalayas, or functionally equivalent and non-toxic.

It seems very strange that this weed deemed noxious by so many might actually be extremely valuable, but I look at what has happened to dandelions and I know this could be possible.

I had been thinking that a plant with SO MUCH vitality MUST be useful to us for something more than plant ties. I am onto the fact that in many, many cases, the very thing that makes some plants so very competitive with domesticated plants is what makes them good for us.

Now I REALLY want to know what is going on here and welcome input.

Health and Abundance for All!.
 
Pamela Melcher
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More on convolvulus arvensis and ashwagnada:

webpagehttp://oneearthherbs.squarespace.com/downloads/BestOfTheBestHerbs.pdf

I quote from this material:

"SAFETY ISSUES: Not to be used during pregnancy. Do not use Withania somnifera
with barbiturates due to potentiation effects. The Nepalese Convolvulus arvensis variety
has no known safety issues, but Western relatives such as bindweeds are associated with
severe toxicity in animals (Todd FG et al., 1995)."

I am a human animal wishing to avoid severe toxicity. I remain cautiously interested in convolvulus arvensis as a possible herb to take.

Input welcome.

Abundance and Health for All

Pamela Melcher


 
Pamela Melcher
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SOrry for typo - ashwaganda.

These articles are referring to the roots of convolvulus arvensis as being valuable as an herb.

Presumably, foraging animals do not eat the roots, but the leaves.

Input welcome.

Love,
Pamela
 
Pamela Melcher
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I am sure there is great info in this CD rom, but I do not want it unless it clarifies my question about the safety of the bindweed in my back yard, and I am not buying it to find out.

http://www.primaryinfo.com/aswagandha.htm

If anyone obtains this info from this CD rom, I would love to hear about it.

Not to be cynical, but to be worldly wise - once there is big money in something, the common garden weed version often gets ignored or gets a bad rap or both.

Several examples spring to mind, but I want to stay on topic.

Still, I want to be discerning.

Abundance and Health for All!

Pamela Melcher

 
Pamela Melcher
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Matu, I just this very minute saw your last post.

Pamela
 
Pamela Melcher
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Matu -

Thank you very much for caring enough to resond.

Sources I reference are saying that there are different plants which have the same functions.

Apparently, Ayurveda originated in the Himalayas where a variety of convolvulus arvensis was used medicinally. But then Ayurveda spread to India, and convolvulus arvensis does not grow there, so they found another plant with the same functions.

The leaf of common field bindweed in America is known to be toxic to animals, but is the root?

The part that they use in the Himalayas is the root.

Often some parts of plants can be useful, while other parts of the same plant are toxic.

I am still pursuing info about the possible medicinal uses of the roots of the bindweed in my back yard.

Input of all kinds welcome.

Love,
Pamela
 
Pamela Melcher
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Field bindweed toxin removed and good part used in very expensive medication:

"VascuStatin Formula is a water extraction of the leaves of the herb Convolvulus arvensis, commonly known as bindweed, and is rich in proteoglycan mixture (PGM). The bindweed contained in VascuStatin is grown in Wyoming, and the toxic alkaloids are removed by a proprietary process.

Suggested Use: As a dietary supplement, 4 capsules one to three times daily, or as directed by a healthcare practitioner. Sensitive individuals may want to start with a lower dose.

Caution: Contraindicated in conditions where vascular formations are desirable, i.e. heart disease, an active healing wound. Do not take for 2 weeks before and after surgery, or during pregnancy or lactation. Contraindicated for infants, children and adolescents. Use only under the supervision of a healthcare practitioner."

Leaves only used here and referred to as containing toxic alkaloids.

http://www.allergyresearchgroup.com/VascuStatin-Formula-120-Caps-p-249.html

Still searching for truth.....................I do not give up easily. A good trait where bindweed is concerned, one way or another..............

Love,
Pamela

 
Lisa Allen
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Todd Caldecott is a highly known and well-reputed Ayurvedic Practititioner and Author and his experience is extensive, he would not lightly refer use. You would indeed use the root and he found it best to tincture in vodka. I am sure he would love to hear from you if you had questions on this, and he will be at the Montana Herb Gathering for those who are in Montana!!
 
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