Japanese Knotweed warning

One cannot but notice the way Japanese knotweed is spreading in Kenmare, KCC, Clare CC, Cork CC as well as BioDiversity Ireland have all published alerts about the problems this weed causes. Japanese knotweed is a threat to roads, bridges and buildings and BioDiversity Ireland advises it is too aggressive for our native plants.
In Kenmare one can see it spread along the Finnihy river up to behind the Court House above the Finnihy bridge and up to the two mile bridge, it is also establishing itself in Kealnagower stream and other streams.
It can be seen in all roads out of Kenmare, the road to the suspension bridge has a major infestation and the very nice park near the musicians, a lot of work has been done here placing seats and cutting grass, a new infestation has developed in this area no doubt causing a problem in the future.
It is normal for most of us to prune trees and plants this time of year and compost the cuttings but according to BioDiversity Ireland this is the very practice that is spreading the weed. It is not like other plants as when it is cut the energy goes into expanding the root, the cutting every bit is capable of a new plant within 10 days in ideal conditions, BioDiversity Ireland say it should be treated with herbicide and injected where extra care is necessary. They say it is important not to cut it and in UK there is a £2500 fine for doing so, I have noticed in recent weeks it being cut and some pieces going off with the stream which may establish fresh growth down stream, I have noticed it being cut with silage as well and it is not supposed to be any harm to animals it could establish in farm yards, Treatment is being done but not enough as it can take 5 years of commitment the only success I notice is on the Templenoe road.
Pat O Shea

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