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Thread: Devil's Club removal tips?

  1. #1
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    Default Devil's Club removal tips?

    Hello all,
    I have never had to deal with devil's club before as a property owner. I know the hazards of touching it and burning it as the smoke can cause blisters in the lungs etc. so what's the best way to handle the stuff and despose of it? We have lots of it!
    I was thinking of possibly trying to dig it up and pile it along the property line as a sort of natural barrier... I guess I'll need to order those plate steel gloves after all.
    Any suggestions?

    Mountaintrekker

  2. #2

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    Think Tom Sawyer & Huckleberry Finn...... Advertise that you've got "Wild Alaska Ginseng" plants for sale and for the low price of $X folks can come and harvest these wonderful medicinal plants. :-)

    Here's a link to some of the uses of devils club.....
    http://cms.herbalgram.org/herbalgram...ticle2697.html

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    Broadleef chemical killers (as much as I despise them) will kill Devils club.

  4. #4

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    Roundup, but don't just start blasting it. We had several patches of devils club, if you hack it all out and haul it off then when new growth starts to come up (usually in the spring) give it a squirt of roundup. You will kill it much faster and you won't pollute the ground as bad. If you know someone with one of those big DR brush cutters you can knock it down pretty fast then just rake it up.
    Chuck

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    it's more brittle and easier to non-chemically eliminate in the winter, also less thorny. I cut tons of it out of the way of miles of trails, and do most of the work late fall before much snow cover, the machete knocks it down easily and with a leather glove I just throw it out of the way.

    then in the spring (for new trail) there are usually a few news shoots that have to be hacked again, but after a year or two of pruning and foot traffic it basically is outcompeted by other stuff.


    if you care much about what else grows there, berries, roses, etc. then be careful with roundup.

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    I think I'll just hack and slash... I don't want to mess with Roundup as I want other things to grow there. Looks like I'll pick up a machete and a garden hoe and muscle it out of there. The ginsing idea is pretty creative...

    Mountaintrekker

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    I've never had much problem burning it. Now, cow parsnip, the non-thorny look-a-like, you definately don't want to burn that stuff. A good sharp machete and a pair of leather gloves can make short work of it. If you don't mind having some goats around, they will eat the stuff, and stomp it into submission.
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    We had a bunch of what I referred to as "old growth" devils club on our property. Stuff was OLD and TALL and THICK. Whacked it out with a machete and pulaski but what did the trick for longer runs of trail was a 3 headed chopper that goes on a string trimmer. They had them at HD and picked them up dirt cheap in the spring (start looking about now) when they sold out "last years" model at about 75% off. I was whacking out swaths through heavy devils club about as fast as I could walk..... it was awesome. It will resprout but knocking it down a few more times and it went away for good. I try not to touch the stuff at all if possible. I've had it go right through some pretty heavy leather gloves. Pitch fork comes in hand for moving it around

  9. #9

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    For what its worth, roundup will only kill what you put it on. You can spray it or rub it on specific plants and in about 7 days will translocate through that plant. There is no residue left in the soil.

  10. #10

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    Get one of these gerber brush whackers. You will be amazed how much better than a machete it is. Very handy. It works great on devils club. Heres the link http://www.forestry-suppliers.com/pr...ge.asp?mi=3839
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  11. #11
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    Dittos on the brush wackers. I carry one for cleaning up trails and it works very well.



    Far superior to any machete.

    If I had to clear alot of it, I'd go motorized.


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    I had a lot to clear and went with the Husky trimmer Paul shows. Actually enjoy thrashing that crap to bits. Like others have said, it will try to grow back to some extent but it is easy to stay on top of once you've mowed it down the first time.

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    Just thought I put my 2 cents in on the Gerber brushwackers. Our small company does a bunch of bush wackin' every year and when those Gerbers first came out they were awesome. However, the quality of the plastic in the handles went down hill and last year two of us broke 5 of them after only minimal use. So... Good design, very poor quality in the current production.

    And as far as the motorized whackers go, I really like the ones with the 8 or 10" circular blade wrapped with chainsaw chain. It takes a good size powerhead to swing it, but goes through brush at an awesome rate.

    Yk

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    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    I have hacked it for years and it will always grow back as the roots are deeply embedded in the ground. The root system also has runners underground and can be traced back to a common source or main root. Round Up sprayed on the broad leaves in the fall as the sap starts to be withdrawn back into the root system seems to work the best for me. When it dies, it can be burnt in outside fires. The plant also, as mentioned, has medicinal properties.

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    This is accurate. Roundup is safe, its a contact herbicide what it touches it kills. You can spot treat the devils club with it. It has no residual. As a landscaper I used lots of this and its a safe effective tool just read and follow the label.
    Quote Originally Posted by goosepilot View Post
    For what its worth, roundup will only kill what you put it on. You can spray it or rub it on specific plants and in about 7 days will translocate through that plant. There is no residue left in the soil.
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    Take an old lawnmower and cut the front rim off up to the deck. It make a good brush hog and will eat Devil's Club with no problem. Cut it low and it'll take awhile for the plant to try to regrow. When it does? Cut it again. Keep it cut and it'll go away. Same with the other brushy growth. Grass will take over even without planting seed. A straight shaft line trimmer with a Beaver blade will do a great job, too. My lot went from wild forest to nice lawn using a 30 year old Montgomery Wards lawn mower and a cheap weed wacker with a Beaver blade. Stumps were pulled with a come along and a Handy Man jack. Pace yourself, do a little every week, and before you know it you'll have a nice yard.

    No lawn chemicals are welcome at my cabin lot. The woods is better off without that crap.

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by northbird1 View Post
    Think Tom Sawyer & Huckleberry Finn...... Advertise that you've got "Wild Alaska Ginseng" plants for sale and for the low price of $X folks can come and harvest these wonderful medicinal plants. :-)

    Here's a link to some of the uses of devils club.....
    http://cms.herbalgram.org/herbalgram...ticle2697.html
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    This one little excerpt from the article told me all I need to know about it's uses...LOL
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    Quote Originally Posted by goosepilot View Post
    There is no residue left in the soil.
    Don't know where you got this info but it is completely inaccurate. Roundup leaves a substantial amount of residue in the soil, which is exactly why it is used so frequently, because it is bound tightly by the soil and does not leach into ground or surface waters.

    True, it will only kill what it is sprayed on. However, roundup and also the surfactants that it is applied with persist in the immediate soil for a long, long time, not at lethal to plant levels but it is there, and as it breaks down the particles will be absorbed by nearby plants. Not much is known about the impacts of the breakdown products, they certainly do not appear to be as toxic as many other pesticides, and they're at low concentrations if the proper dose is applied.

    In summary, nearly all of the residue IS left in the soil, and this is a good thing if you want to keep it out of surrounding waters.

  19. #19
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    The active ingredient in Roundup binds very tightly to soil particles once it hits the ground, making it inactive herbicidally. Microbes then break it down into natural constituents over time. Unless there is a really huge load of the herbicide applied in a very, very sandy soil situation there should be no herbicidal effect on plants in the vicinity.
    Quote Originally Posted by La Pine View Post
    This is accurate. Roundup is safe, its a contact herbicide what it touches it kills. You can spot treat the devils club with it. It has no residual. As a landscaper I used lots of this and its a safe effective tool just read and follow the label.
    May God Bless The USA!
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  20. #20

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    Funny this thread popped back up, I just harvested a pile of devils club roots this weekend. Cures what allies ya.

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