Chase County is considering adding field bindweed or common mullein, or both, to the noxious weed list.
That’s according to Randy Bartlett, county weed superintendent. If that occurs, penalties for failure to control would be the same as other statewide noxious weeds.
He noted that several counties across the state have added noxious weeds to their control lists in accordance with the Nebraska Noxious Weed Control Act.
Bartlett said the county has been spraying this fall for bindweed in ditches. They appreciate those landowners who have already sprayed their ditches, he said.
Fall is an excellent time to control noxious weeds, Bartlett said. Nebraska’s noxious are translocating nutrients to their root systems during the cool autumn months to survive the winter and get a good start next year.
Weeds classified as noxious in Nebraska include Canada thistle, musk thistle, plumeless thistle, leafy spurge, spotted knapweed, diffuse knapweed, purple loosestrife, saltcedar, Japanese knotweed, giant knotweed, phragmites and sericea lespedeza.
Many hard-to-control weeds, especially biennial and perennial varieties, are most susceptible to herbicide treatments at this time. Herbicide applications reach deeper into the root systems of undesirable plants (weeds) during the fall months simply because the plant is taking nutrients and water to the deep regions of its roots. As the plants take in nutrients and water to store as root reserves they also take in herbicides.
Lower rates of herbicides can be used with fall applications, thus making weed control less expensive. Lower application rates go further into the plants before the top part of the plant is ‘burned off’ by the effects of the herbicides applied.
Fall applications are generally more effective because herbicides get to the ‘root’ of the problem in weeds. Fall applications are also generally more environmentally friendly since most crops have been removed.
Noxious and invasive weeds can be treated with herbicides this fall wherever they are actively growing until the ground freezes. Typically, treating perennial and biennial weeds this fall will show good results next spring because the plants have been stressed at their strongest points—the roots, Bartlett said.
Concerning fall treatment, Bartlett said tilling or otherwise disturbing the soil will interrupt the effectiveness of the herbicide applied. Also, don’t give up on the treated areas just because it has been treated once.
“Map or otherwise mark the “spot” so it can be returned to in the spring for further control measures. It takes a persistent effort to control persistent noxious and invasive weeds,” he said.