Knotweed Knockout project continues

A small Green Team crew of Josie Ramsey, Doug Ramsey, and Terry Doloughty were out on Friday evening working at the Knotweed Knockout site on Melwood Avenue.  They report that the knotweed is growing back more lightly and the native plants that were allowed to remain are starting to take over again.  This is, of course, near the end of the growing cycle, and after months of pulling out knotweed.

Some new growth is still appearing.  Notice how long the lateral roots are on even small knotweed sprouts.

Penn State Extension of Allegheny County, which has provided resources to support our community gardens, has been following the Knotweed Knockout project.  They were interested to hear about the discovery of a fungus among some of the knotweed root balls at the site.  The fungus appeared to be killing those plants, and Penn State came and took samples to learn more.  Perhaps this will lead to some new product that can halt the expansion of knotweed.

Penn State will also be using a small section (above) near the Knotweed Knockout site to test a herbicide against Weed Zap, the cinnamon oil product  that the City is using to spray knotweed.

Through the fall months the team will continue to dig out root balls and root systems at the site.  Next spring, in the second year of the two-year project, the team will assess new growth and remove it as necessary while introducing more native species.