Help us free seedlings we planted last year from weed competition.
Some of the trees and shrubs we planted out last year are being choked by weed growth. This is reducing the growth of our seedlings and may kill them during the high stress summer they’re experiencing.
We’ll be hand weeding around them and watering them if needed. The day is forecast to be relatively cool, but we’ll start early as there is little shade as yet—that’s what our plants will achieve one day!
We’ll meet at the carpark at the end of Lewis Drive, Castlemaine on Sunday at 8:00 AM.
Wear hat, gloves sturdy clothing and footwear. Bring your own drinking water and if you have them, knee pads.
If you can, could you please bring a bucket and some old table knives. Steak knives are ideal!
In case you can’t come along until later, you can catch us at one of the three locations we’ll be:
The first site is behind the Salvage Yard (where we planted on 16/9/2018). Walk north from the Lewis Dve carpark.
The second site is accessed from Cunnack St (where we planted on 30/9/2018)
The third site is accessed via Elliot St at the rear of Winters Flat Primary school Hope to see you there!
In case you want to take on this yourself at your own time, here's the recommended technique:
Lift the tree guard to give enough room for your hands
Locate the stem or stems of our tree/shrub—you may need to feel for them as the weeds are so prolific
Push the weeds down and away from our plant so you can see what you’re doing
Use a table knife (serrated steak knives are ideal) to cut off the weeds just below ground level, always cutting away from our plant
Some weeds might already be so tough that they need to be cut individually, in other cases, you should be able to cut several in one sweeping movement
Reposition the guard and hammer the stake back in if it needs it.
There are several reasons why we recommend cutting weeds below the growing point rather than pulling them out.
• For many species of weeds (e.g., Dock) pulling them will just break them off above their growing point and they’ll regrow, meaning the weed control effort only gave our plant a temporary respite from competition.
• Some weed species don’t break off, but have strong stems and roots and can’t be pulled out anyway.
• For those weed species that will pull out, once they’ve grown to a large size, pulling them out can disturb the roots of the tree/shrub. If it’s already struggling with drought, this can disrupt its water supply enough to kill it.
• Pulling out a large weed by the roots can also drag out the entire young tree/shrub if its roots haven’t grown strong enough.
• Some weeds are so prickly, their spines can penetrate gloves.