The "poison" you speak of is poisonous, yes. THISTLES (Cirsium spp., Carthamus spp.) I attach the sprayer to the riding mower with bungee cords and ride around the pasture on the extremely rare occasions I spray. We graze livestock in that pasture - livestock that provides our family with both meat and milk. Many insects feed on the leaves, stems, flowers and seeds, while some songbirds also feed on thistle seeds. tb1234. Thistles in your garden can be sliced off with a hoe; cut them as close to the ground as possible. Chemical control methods are most effective on young, small thistle plants. Mowing plants after flowering will actually enhance seed spread, making the problem worse. However, like mowing, timing is an important factor for many herbicides. Research we have conducted with spot-spraying of Scotch thistle using herbicides such as metsulfuron or a triclopyr/picloram mixtures which are damaging to the clover component of pastures showed that applying the herbicide only to the centre of each rosette was as eff… “Every pasture had horse nettle, and … A vigorous, well grazed pasture will have limited weeds, much like a healthy lawn. ROUNDUP/TOUCHDOWN (glyphosate) 1 to 2 qt./acre or 1 to 2% solution. Highly effective and it makes great pork. Where they graze there are none of either left. TORDON (picloram) long soil-residual selective control in permanent pastures where brush control is also desired. Using a shovel to dig thistles during the rosette stage is a common practice of control in pastures during early infestation. Control of Canada Thistle in CRP and Other Noncrop Acreage • FNR-436-W. If you see a dense patch of thistle in a field or pasture, chances are good that this is Canada thistle. Broad-leaf herbicides that work well on thistle contain Metsulfuron-methyl, 2,4-D, dicamba, triclopyr or aminopyralid as their active ingredient. Use glyphosate for your garden, and use a broad-leaf herbicide containing 2,4-D or MCPP for your lawn. No, you don’t have to go out and buy this fancy-sounding acid, you probably already have this natural way to get rid of weeds in your pantry already. I made my living spraying thistle. After flowering or with the first frost, biennial thistles die in the second year. Both can have substantial impacts on thistle seed production. Photo courtesy of Shep Eubanks UF/IFAS, Stage 2: In year two, a stalk will elongate from the rosette. Keep mowing before they bloom, roots get weaker and weaker until most are gone but you have to keep at it, always vigilant....James. Regardless of the control method selected, the importance of timing cannot be over emphasized. We recommend using 2,4-D Amine Selective Weed Killer to treat Canada Thistle.This professional-quality herbicide is easy to use and is selective so it will only target the problem weed and leave your desired plants unharmed. Since musk thistle seed can survive in the soil for a number of years, it may take two or more years of excellent control before seeds are reduced to the point that allo… Native thistle provide important habitat and food sources for native fauna. Scotch thistle is generally quite susceptible to most herbicides compared with some other thistle species, though it is harder to kill as it gets larger. Canadian thistle is starting to take over. (Image 2), Image 2. For a better experience, please enable JavaScript in your browser before proceeding. Once a plant has established in pasture, it forms a patch of plants which are initially connected by the creeping root system, but these connections rot away in time. Method is most effective when applied at the rosette stage. In addition, if you mow a pasture where a thistle issue is present, the mower should be cleaned before moving to areas of your operation that don’t have a thistle issue. Suite 500, Troy, Michigan 48084 USA. Holmes County Extension Director working in the areas of Agricultural Management in row crop, natural resources, livestock and forage production. The prevention of seed production is key. Figure 1. Herbicides are often the most flexible and affordable option for thistle control in pastures. “But sometimes this is the only answer. Yep, that is exactly the thistle we had an issue with two years ago. SCOTCH THISTLE The flowers are made up of many small flower heads and are purple in colour. Spray before it flowers but after it has 4 to 8 leaves. Homemade Solution to Kill Thistles. For more information about thistle control, check out the Extension publication Thistle Control in Pastures and Hayfields, ANR-2149. Scouting pastures in late fall through mid-spring will allow for producers to stay ahead of their thistle populations. I don't think I'll be going that route. Like mechanical control, chemical control also comes down to timing. You can not pull a Canada thistle plant out, and get the roots out and be effective is the thing. Like mechanical control, chemical control also comes down to timing. FOLIAR TREATMENTS FOR NONSELECTIVE REMOVAL OF BIENNIAL THISTLE FROM PASTURE GRASSES. Specialized in Beef Cattle Production in the area of reproductive, nutritional and finical management. While most of us probably need to start with attacking the weeds already sprouting in our fields, a good pasture-management system begins with year-round pasture care, from taking a soil sample, to evaluating your seed mix, to combatting weeds. Pour household white vinegar into a spray bottle. Reviewed by Dr. Leanne Dillard, May 2019. This is in flood plane. “We have a smartphone app and a booklet to help,” he says. • Leaves are deeply lobed with spiny margins. To thistles, and other broadleaf weeds, or if you suck on them or lick them afterwards which is not recommended. Then, spritz the vinegar directly onto the thistle plants until the plants are dripping with vinegar. Some cheaper herbs like 2-4d and MCPA, kind of burn the tops off, and they will regrow. As thistles are self-fertile (enabling them to spread at a rapid pace) it is crucial that they are killed right down to the root so there is less chance of re-growth. What is the best way to kill them???? Flowering typically is seen from April to August. “Killing the entire pasture and starting over is something that no one wants to hear,” says Waite. Next year we only pulled a half dozen and this year we haven't seen any. Our pigs _love_ thistle. A single thistle plant can produce 4,000+ seeds. The good news is that the herbicides available to control thistle will also control many of the winter annual weeds that are out there right now in Panhandle pastures and hayfields. They were really thick. DO you have to spray the whole 1.5 acres? Image 1. In addition, if you mow a pasture where a thistle issue is present, the mower should be cleaned before moving to areas of your operation that don’t have a thistle issue. And burdock. Herbicide application at flowering greatly reduces the number of effective herbicides available. Bull thistle control can be manual or chemical with an emphasis on seed co… Delayed application until after bolting can result in a decreased effectiveness of chemical control. This is critical as small populations are much easier to control, than larger, more robust populations. by Kalyn Waters | Apr 17, 2020 | Forage & Pasture, hay, pasture, Pest Management, Weeds. Our ponies are clearing a lot of pasture for us, one field each year... Logged Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use. Patterns never change...liars can never be believed. Typically, this means 1 or 2 sprays per plant. Identification of thistles can be challenging. It is a prickly biennial that grows freely in disturbed soils, pastures, ditches, roadsides and unmanaged spaces. A biennial plant will be grown from seed one year and then produce seeds the second year. DH brings a little cooler along with a couple waters, couple beers, but that is optional. Step 3 Apply herbicides to kill thistle, especially in spring and fall, before thistles can flower and seed. Before using any herbicide product, make sure you first have on the proper PPE for safety (gloves, glasses, mask). ThistleX® weed killer effectively controls creeping and spear thistles in established grassland, permanent paddocks and pasture. • A basal rosette is formed the first year … Photo Credit: J. Ferrell, IFAS. Two musk thistle bio-control insects have been distributed throughout much of Alabama. With that small a pasture I would just walk through it and pull the thistles, preferably before they have a chance to re-seed. Canada thistle can be killed with weed killers. • Canada Thistle • A persistent perennial plant that spreads by wind-blown seeds or rhizomes. Canadian thistle is starting to take over. Along those lateral roots, are many buds, waiting to pop up. The plant has colonized much of North America and is a pest plant in the garden and in agriculture. For instant Bull thistle killing ability, ... Getting on the above herbicides will go a long way in keeping your yard, lawn, driveway, food plots, or pasture field free from thistles. Trouble with digging Canada thistle out, is they are very deep rooted and spread by lateral rhizomes, which are often a foot or more below the surface. There are nine different species of thistles in the state of Florida, but the good news (if there can be any when it comes to thistles) is that they are all controlled with the same recommendations. )Over the past two summers, Bradley’s graduate student, Zach Trower, has walked across 46 Missouri pastures every 14 days to record weed species, estimate densities, and sample soil. Thistle in Gadsden County hayfield. Usually Canadas are in patches. The stem and leaves on the plant are a whitish grey due to a fairly dense covering of short hairs. The best time to chemically control thistle is during warm months when it is actively growing. Expect the vinegar to take a few days to a week to kill the thistles. Several of the herbicides listed above will injure or kill forage legumes. JavaScript is disabled. They CAN be controlled without the use of poisons. They eat the plants and dig up the roots. How do I kill or control thistle in my lawn. The best time to apply these is on sunny days when the temperatures are between 65 and 85 degrees F. (18-29 C.). So I've got about 1 1/2 acres of pasture with a few sheep (and occasionally my neighbors horse). With the exception of very low rates of 2,4-D (0.5 to 1.0 pt/acre) applied in December or February, every other commonly used pasture herbicide will severely injure or kill clovers. While the summer-blooming thistle flower (1a, left) may be the most recognizable growth form, scout now for the small, flat rosette stage (Figure 1b) and treat with herbicides this fall to achieve the most effective control. • Bull Thistle • A biennial with prominent spines. Californian thistle is one of the most common thistle species in New Zealand. The only areas I had thistles this year are the areas that were too wet to get to and spray last year. You can rapidly go from a situation where you only have a few plants to a very high populations in one or two years. Proactive Pasture Weed Management Techniques. I used a pump up sprayer to spray vinegar on individual thistles on about 30 acres last year. New patches can spread quickly if control measures are not taken. Dairy ... Is it creeping thistle or the tall spear thistles. Several commonly used pasture herbicides are highly effective on thistles if applied early in the growing season (Table 2). A single thistle plant will produce approximately 4,000 seeds annually, thus implementing control methods prior to the flowering stage is key. A single thistle plant can produce over 4,000 seeds that will be spread easily by the wind. Like most weeds they will compete with and choke out more desirable pasture grasses. This is called bolting. Mechanical control can be effective, especially in smaller pastures, or when issues first arise, and there is a small infestation. Toughest weed we ever had, even Roundup was slow to get rid of them in roundup ready crops, took several years. Complete control options, chemical effectiveness, and rates can found in the publication: Thistle Control in Pastures. Interestingly, all the product on the list is 100% eco-friendly and non-allergic hence safe to use around pets and household. Because many weed killers are non-selective, they will kill anything they touch, so it is best not to use these on windy days. Step 1- Measure and Mix 2,4-D Amine Begin by calculating the square footage (length x width = square footage) of the treatment area to determine how much 2,4-D A… It is very troublesome in pastures because it is so difficult to control. This stage of growth is seen during the winter months in Florida. Which is what you want: to re-establish the grass. We spent many hours over many days walking a 10-acre pasture, pulling every one we found. There are a few chemicals that work well, some work better than others, but you need to be aware of potential issues with each one. When it comes to controlling thistles, timing is everything. Overdrive should be applied prior to a killing frost. So you can see that getting these things under control early is very important. Using a shovel to dig thistles during the rosette stage is a common practice of control in pastures during early infestation. MCPA (Rhonox) is safer than most herbicides on legumes, but may still cause injury., Outdoor Hub, LLC (d/b/a Carbon Media Group), 3290 W. Big Beaver Rd. Start by identifying your pasture weeds, says Bradley. One of the biggest issues with pasture herbicides is that they are very effective clover killers too. Years ago. I have done that much with a little sprayer before, works well. A sharp spade shovel and a wheelbarrow, or a trailer behind an ATV, a UTV with a bed, you get the picture. Mechanical and chemical control can be effective for thistles in pastures. Stage 3: In its final stage of growth the thistle will flower, produce seed and die. One great way to kill thistles is by using acetic acid. (Order the weed booklet or download the app at When to control Come join the discussion about livestock, farming, gardening, DIY projects, hobbies, recipes, styles, reviews, accessories, classifieds, and more! --Kyle Once this section of the pasture is coated, move the tractor to a new section. Across the southeast pasture owners maybe noticing the unwelcome presence of thistles. Thistle plants come from the Asteraceae plant family and include several varieties. Acetic acid is nothing more than plain old white vinegar. Canada and bull thistle are some of the varieties of thistle you may find in your lawn. Control Pasture Thistles this Fall Share Tweet Email. Spot spraying individual rosettes rather than broadcast spraying the entire pasture also spares the legumes. Figure 1. Lontrel™ Advanced Boom application 25 or 35 mL/ha + 1 or 1.5 L/ha NSW, Qld, SA, Tas, Vic Doses of imazapic PLATEAU that control thistle tend to severely injure tall fescue. Bolting typically takes place from January to July in the Florida Panhandle. Sept. 25, 2015. What I do it go out and cut it off at the ground level and then spray some weed killer on the stump...the rest goes into the burn pile and a nice hot fire so the seed won't spread. Bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare) is a plant that is related to the sunflower family but has none of the charm and beauty of those sunny-nodding flower heads. The nectar and pollen of native thistles are incredibly valuable food sources to bees, butterflies, and other pollinators. This is a cluster of leaves near the top of the soil with a tap root (Image 1). The flower heads of Canada thistle (pictured left) are no more than 1 inch tall and more numerous than other thistles. Of the nine specie of thistles in Florida, all but one of them are biennials. Rosette’s are the most sensitive to herbicides; many common pasture herbicides are effective. Four broadleaf herbicides were compared for effectiveness in removal of thistles from permanent pasture: Grazon, Dyvel DS, Lontrel and 2,4-D. Each was applied singularly on pasture plots in early to mid-July. An acre and a half could be managed by digging them out. MCPA, 2,4-D and MCPB are all used to selectively control Scotch thistle in pastures. Mechanical control can be effective, especially in smaller pastures, or when issues first arise, and there is a small infestation. Mechanical and chemical control can be effective for thistles in pastures. Rosette’s are the most sensitive to herbicides; many common pasture herbicides are effective. Designed by Elegant Themes | Powered by WordPress. Two months later, all products had reduced the thistle … I use florasulam mixed with MCPA which really kinks them up, and gives the grass a chance to retake the area. Grazing Management Options for Cool-Season Forages, Dr. Blount’s 2020 Cool-Season Forage Variety Update, Cool-Season Forage Update Webinar – September 24, UF/IFAS Animal Science Offering Know Your Heifer Program, Texas A&M Offers QuickBooks Desktop Training for Farmers and Ranchers Online in 2020. Killing briars in pasture - posted in Pasture & Grazing: I have a few areas in one of my pastures that continue to grow briars year after year. We have 10 acres and that is the approach we take vs. spraying poisons over all of it for us to inhale and the animals to ingest. Using good cultural practices (including rotational grazing, maintaining optimal soil fertility, and periodic mowing) that result in vigorous, dense, and uniform stands will help keep pastures competitive with weeds. We do everything we can to avoid using poisons of any kind, since we don't trust the manufacturer's claims of safety - of anything. I've been battling Canadian thistle for years in my garden but I'm winning - the worse thing I did was run a tiller over it - broke up the plants and roots and ended up with more - so what I do now is hit it with roundup whenever some shows it's ugly little head out of the ground - when you pull it out of the ground you almost always leave a small piece of root in the ground and this eventually grows back - I hit my garden and neighboring field a couple times a year with the roundup - good luck. Pull the tractor to one corner of the pasture. It takes 2-3 years to get it close to eradication but less each year to spray. Before they go to seed. • Flowers are pink to purple in color. Spray the herbicide evenly over the area by moving the nozzle back and forth. And even though the species is poorly dispersed via seed, just one seed can produce a new patch. As you can imagine this makes it easy for it to spread over a large area. Mowing can also be used; however, consideration of the stage of growth must be taken. A forum community dedicated to living sustainably and self sufficiently. Thistles have three distinct life stages: Stage 1: The first year the plant will grow as a rosette. Repeat until the entire grass area is treated. So I've got about 1 1/2 acres of pasture with a few sheep (and occasionally my neighbors horse). The stems of Canada thistle lack the conspicuous spiny wings found on bull thistle (C. vulgare) Thus, treatments to control musk thistle need to be made prior to legume establishment. Not trying to be cynical here but how many times have we been assured something is safe, only to find out decades later that it is the reason this cancer or that [insert health concern here] is suddenly more common? Scouting is always essential to identify the issue early allowing for timely, proactive mechanical or chemical control of thistles. Thistle in bolt stage of growth. Clopyralid, at a good, high rate, will eradicate it for a LONG time, with one application.