Couch Grass

Community Community Garden Problems Weeds Couch Grass

This topic contains 8 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  grannyjanny 8 years, 6 months ago.

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    I need some encouragement just now! As I get going on this no dig journey I have spent ages this afternoon with a trowel digging out couch grass roots. Do they always go so deep and will I ever get rid of them without chemicals?

    I kept hearing that terrible snap sound that means I left a big chunk behind, grrrrrrrrr.



    Sorry just found you already had a thread going about this undr a different title.

    I have put 6″ of muck on the bed and planted on top but I think having read the other post I will dig up the herbs and strawberries that are battling with the couch and plant them through landscape fabric.


    Pete Budd

    There is an alternative to covering to exclude light but it involves digging. I`ve done it on a relatively small scale and would not recommend it for a large area; the first step is to dig over in autumn, leaving the soil in large (massive) lumps, then in spring when the top has dried off, shake the couch out with a fork. Of course in the no-dig scheme of things this method should be used as a one off, prior to settling in to a no-dig regime. Its very good exercise!

    Cheers Pete:-)



    Im having the same battle with couch grass and although Im winning it is a slow battle and having found out that the previous allotment owners just threw al the couch grass in one part of the plot I have opted to plant fruit trees in the worst effected part fo it is relativey easier to keep on top of things. That said I am finding that half an hour of weeding per week is keeping well on top of it and that is getting less each month. So you an win if you are persistent.



    I added 6″ of welll rotted manure to a bed of couch grass and planning to plant strawberries because as I understood that 6″ should kill the couch grass eventually. Or have I misunderstood things??? Poolfield has your couch grass come through your 6″ of muck? This thing about weed is worrying.



     I am confused after reading this thread, exactly what Poolfield you are doing? First I thought you were just digging couch out of soil, now I wonder if you are digging it out of a six inch mulch of manure?

    The thing about couch is that it comes many variables of quantity and vigour. Yes a six inch mulch of manure/compost will smother and suffocate most of it if there is not too much. But if a lot of roots are there…. enough leaves will poke through to need quite regular removing until roots are exhausted. I am in that position in parts of my new garden with some thick and vigorous couch that will take more than a year to be rid of. It may even poke through landscape fabric whereas Mypex is a little thicker.



    I have an allotment and can keep pretty much on top of my weeds apart from one area where all my rasberry canes are growing. The couch grass just keep on coming! I have dug some out but am worried about damaging my canes, it just keeps coming back, should I just cover it all with large amounts of manure, the canes look ok but seem to be slower growing this year.The canes are autumn bliss and about 5 years old. Thanks



     Well couch is a difficult weed and impossible to clean properly when entangled with tree and shrub roots. I would plant some new raspberries this autumn in clean soil, if you have enough room, then chop off the existing canes at year end and cover with something to exclude light, perhaps polythene rather than manure.

    Raspberries have been slow to get going this spring so your slower growth may be just due to weather.



    I was talking to a fellow plot holder about the dreaded couch which was around the base of our blackcurrants. She had used a 2 pronged fork. The sort that goes with a carving knife. That reminded me that Id bought a 2 pronged weeding tool. It was perfect for the job. OK I didn’t get it all out in one go but I have the tool to keep going at it.

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