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Weeds : Perennial weeds

Broadleaved dock – a troublesome weed

Broadleaved dock – a troublesome weed

The perennial weeds are persistent weeds that, once established, spread until they take over the available ground space. They survive over winter by dying back to a network of thick, fleshy storage roots, or a tight rosette of leaves. Each year the storage root network becomes more extensive, and this is the main method by which these weeds spread.

They may be controlled by removing the root system completely, or by killing it with weedkiller. Removal is difficult, since even small pieces of root may be enough for the weed to regenerate. Ground made free of perennial weeds is reasonably easy to keep clear.

Hoeing will prevent establishment from seed, and if the root ball of every new plant is checked for the presence of perennial weed roots, there is no way they can get in.
Perennial weeds infest both cultivated and uncultivated ground. They prefer less actively cultivated ground, such as a shrub border, where their root systems will not be disrupted so much.

Only a few, such as bindweed and scutch, are vigorous enough to tolerate continuous disturbance. Other common perennial weeds include nettles, docks, bishop weed, creeping thistle and dandelion. Many lawn weeds are perennials too, principally within lawn areas but also occur in flower beds, especially dandelion, clover, buttercup and daisies.


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