Love your book! My girlfriend's parents gave me a copy a few months ago, thinking it might be up my ally. Boy were they right! Love the history and level of detail you incorporate. It is clear what drives your insights. What a contribution to the movement, I have already recommended it to a few friends.
Gushing aside, here's my question:
On our farm, there is a swath of Japenese knot weed that's maybe about 1000 square feet. For the past decade or so (before my time here) it has been whacked back with weed whackers and brush hogs a few times annually. No chemicals management, thankfully. Yet of course the roots persist and it gets harder to manage each year.
I recently came into about $200 worth of bamboo plants as part of a work trade. 6 decent sized root balls. My thinking was to grow it out a bit in another location and steadily introduce it to the knot weed area by digging up sections large enough to get the bamboo to set roots and give it a little space on either side. My fear is that I will just lose the bamboo plants to competition. I want them to spread out in that area because it will take many years to expand my six plants into that 1000 square foot area. I guess my question was more a plea for advice on how to accomplish this. Or if you think it is even a viable war to wage?
A few other things I thought of:
- tarping the knotweed area systematically
-putting rhizome barriers around the bamboo sections until they establish
Thank you for any advice you can offer to this little side project and for your excellent book!
That seems like an interesting idea. It will probably shade the knotweed eventually. Do you know what species of bamboo it is or whether its a clumper or a runner? Since you mentioned you live on a farm, is there a chance that you might be able to run pigs in the area? It would probably take a few seasons of letting them forage and dig up the regrowing stems, but I think they could be a useful tool in setting it back. I would probably suggest going that route first, as you'll probably have to continually cut the knotweed back to get other plantings established.
So glad you liked the book! Its great to be part of such interesting conversations.