How to Control Giant Hogweed: It Can Be Really Serious!

So first up, let’s get serious: Giant Hogweed sap causes very serious skin burns and can cause blindness. The scars caused by the burns can flare up again years after the original injury and permanent loss of vision isn’t funny. If you identify Giant Hogweed on your land, steer clear and get invasive weed specialists to resolve the problem. Please inform your local authority if you find Giant Hogweed on publicly owned land.

How can PBA Solutions help to control Giant Hogweed?

PBA offer a targeted Giant Hogweed control programme which is comprised of three stages. Firstly, we aim to prevent seed production and dispersal. We do this by safely removing any Giant Hogweed flower heads and seed heads, ensuring that new seed spread is prevented. We control the growth of these impressive plants by using appropriate control methods such as taproot cutting, hand-pulling and herbicide treatments.

Lastly, we set about exhausting the seed bank, which can be achieved through repetitive herbicide spot treatments of the live plants prior to seed formation. With this process, four or five years will normally be needed before the seed bank is sufficiently depleted. Consideration has to be given to treating all plants in a location rather than those growing on a single property since Giant Hogweed seeds can be blown in from neighbouring infestations.

Although sadly not always the most cost-effective or achievable, environmentally sound options are preferable and should always be explored before starting a Giant Hogweed treatment programme.

Last resort Giant Hogweed control

A Giant Hogweed control method of last resort is to perform a scrape of the topsoil across the area affected by Giant Hogweed and its surroundings. This tends to be expensive, both financially and environmentally. All Giant Hogweed waste material is classed as a controlled waste so, if it is taken off site, it can only be disposed of in licensed landfill sites with the required documentation.

How PBA can help...

PBA have many years’ experience and are accredited to deal with all aspects of Giant Hogweed identification, control and management. We work with private property owners, estate agents and management, developers and public sector organisations in the remediation of land impacted by Giant Hogweed and provide detailed, EA compliant Management Plans that enable effective control solutions to be developed and actioned.

For advice or to book a Giant Hogweed survey, simply call PBA on 0203 174 2187 or 01202 816134.

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