Plant expert warns of Japanese Knotweed


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Plant expert Dave Knott has no love for his weedy namesake. 

In an interview within the Sunday Post, Dave Knot, the head of live collections at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Edinburgh, says, "Japanese Knotweed is able to punch up through concrete so it can damage the foundations of your house".

"The problem has been bubbling away for a number of years but now it is becoming increasingly difficult to control.

"The problem with Japanese Knotweed is that if you dig it up but do not dispose of it properly or desiccate the roots, it can survive from tiny, tiny bits of roots. Then it just moulders away, like a ticking time bomb for the future. It might do nothing for years but suddenly - bang! - it's a major problem again."

Concern about the spread of Japanese Knotweed

Dave warns that in these financially troubled times, the problem of is only likely to get worse.

Dave added: " In the economic situation as services are cut back, things that were seen as good to do, like removing Japanese knotweed, do not happen, ".

"Waste ground is a particular problem because you have the whole issue of who owns it and is therefore responsible to control it"

Japanese Knotweed now indicated in Home Reports

The horticulturalist does offer some hope of a solution - but not in the short term.

"The good thing about Japanese Knotweed is that, now it is on Home Reports, surveyors are looking out for it," he says.

"And they are trying to control it biologically by introducing Psyllids - little insects that are a natural predator to Japanese Knotweed. That could be the way to control this in the long run"

The Rotter comments...

The Rotter, aka Les Meikle MD of Wise Knotweed Solutions commented: "What Mr Knott has to say about the root system is very true. Certainly, the tiniest piece the size of a fingernail is enough to cause an issue.

The introduction of Psyllids however, is a very positive step. It will take time to really measure the biological impact of this new insect introduction on our ecosystem. Certainly, from the research that has been released to date, we are pleased to say the news has been positive.

"For the time being though, Japanese Knotweed is an issue for Home Owners and the property market".

More information on Japanese Knotweed

For more information on Japanese Knotweed, click on the web pages below: