While it may sound more like a character from a Harry Potter movie than a garden-dwelling pest, giant hogweed is far from a magical addition to your property.

In fact, giant hogweed has the ability to cause serious damage, particularly if it comes into contact with human skin.

To keep you and your loved ones safe, we’re hamming it up with our comprehensive rundown of giant hogweed.

 

giant hogweed removal

 

What is Giant Hogweed?

As the name suggests, giant knotweed has the ability to reach heights of over 3m, adorned in large, leafy stems and topped with white flowery clusters that are umbrella-like in appearance.

While it may appear pleasing to the eye, don’t let its innocent appearance fool you – it’s hiding some serious dangers beneath its looks.

Originating in the Caucasus Mountains and Central Asia, this troublesome weed made its way over to the UK in the 19th century as an ornamental addition, much like Japanese knotweed.

However, unlike Japanese knotweed, giant hogweed can pose a variety of physical dangers as well as horticultural headaches.

 

Dangers of Giant Hogweed

If you were to describe giant hogweed based on the facts, the resulting description could very easily be applied to a sci-fi monster.

In addition to its daunting height, it’s also covered in fibrous hairs and coated in toxic sap. The sap itself is an extreme irritant which can burn the skin and even lead to potential sight loss if exposed to the eyes.

If the skin comes into contact with giant hogweed sap, the toxic substance reacts with sunlight to cause photodermatitis, leading to a red rash with painful blistering and scarring a common consequence.

 

Removing Giant Hogweed

As a foreign plant with strongly invasive tendencies, giant hogweed is classed as an “invasive alien”, with a variety of legislation placed upon this harmful plant in order to control it.

Giant hogweed is even listed in the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, meaning it’s actually an offence to cause giant hogweed to grow in the wild in England and Wales.

If you find giant hogweed on your property, it’s strongly advised you contact a specialist to conduct professional removal of the weed ASAP.

Attempting removal without expert knowledge can be dangerous. Cut plant debris and even contaminated clothing and tools used to remove it can still prove hazardous.

For safe eradication of giant hogweed from your property, call Taylor Weed Control today on 029 2039 7554 and cut your giant invader down to size without feeling the burn.

 

If you would like more information on giant hogweed or additional details of our weed removal services, drop us an email today using the button below.

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When it comes to gardening chores, pulling up weeds can be like pulling teeth: it’s a painful process that nobody wants to go through but is often a necessary evil that’s a means to an end.

However, like pulling teeth, doing so yourself is probably not the smartest way to go about it. Not only can it be risky but it can also result in further complications down the line.

In order to ensure you get the job done well first time, the best bet is to call in the experts. Luckily, your friendly neighbourhood weed whackers here at TWC have you covered... for weeds that is, not teeth pulling.

But there’s a lot more to de-weeding a garden than simply yanking up unsightly plants from the roots. Like any self-respecting professional, lawn care experts will also need a license to do so.

 

licensed to use weed killer

 

Law of the Land

In order to professionally administer weed killer, lawncare specialists must come equipped with a relevant weed killer license that permits them to do so – and with good reason.

The chemicals used can not only be harmful to the untrained but also to the environment if used incorrectly. To avoid harm to yourself, your garden or others, it’s important that whoever that your garden expert of choice is a fully licensed pro.

While you are free to use over the counter weed killer products on your own domestic land, commercial weed killing services can no longer be supplied without the relevant qualifications, following the introduction of new laws in 2015.

This is great news for prideful professionals, as it weeds out the industry cowboys; however, it’s also good news for you, the consumer. Stricter training regulations mean you get a better service and more professional treatment of your lawn if you do turn to an expert for a helping hand.

 

Weed Out the Competition

So, just what do you need to look out for when identifying if your chosen pro is licensed to use weed killer?

The specific qualifications your pro will need to have are in particular are the PA1 and PA6 qualifications. These are commonly known collectively as the NPTC Level 2 Award in the Safe Use of Pesticides.

In order to pass as a fully-qualified weed removal expert, your chosen expert will need to have both PA1 and PA6 certification in order to qualify as a horticultural hitman of weeds. One or the other won’t suffice, so be sure they have both sides of the equation covered.

The PA1 represents the theory side of the course – including health and safety requirements, product knowledge and legislation – while the PA6 covers the all-important practical side, providing first-hand experience of manual handling and safe pesticide use.

Once completed, the course provides a lifetime qualification for safe use of pesticides in public places. As a life-long license, there is no expiry to this certification (barring any drastic changes in regulations or chemical usage).

 

Grandfather Rights

To muddy up the process even further, you may stumble across the term “grandfather rights”. This is in reference to a legal loophole that allows those born before 1965 to use professional crop protection without a weed killer license.

However, since the updated laws came into effect, this loophole is no longer valid and the term has now run its course. If your lawncare professional does try to pull a fast one using the “grandfather” card, don’t be afraid to lay down the law and give them what for.

 

Additional Paperwork

In addition to a valid weed killer license, it’s also worth checking your lawn care professional is covered with the relevant Public Liability Insurance.

PLI covers the service provider for your compensation, should something go awry with the treatment and you need to make a claim (such as personal injury or property damage).

While this may not seem like your concern as a consumer, it’s good to know that your lawn care professional is capable of paying up should worse come to worst.

 

Good to Know

While often used interchangeably, there is actually a notable difference between the “pesticides” and “herbicides”. Luckily, the name tags of each provide a not-so-subtle clue as to which one is which.

Pesticides are chemicals used to control harmful insects that can destroy flowers and other vegetation. Herbicides, on the other hand, are chemicals used to treat weeds that can negatively affect and hinder the growth of vegetation. Despite the difference between the two, both are covered under the PA1 and PA6 license.

If you do decide to use weed killer on your own garden, be careful when ordering products online as some professional-grade weed killer products found online requires an equally professional applicators license. To avoid any issues, be sure to double-check before you hit the “order” button.

For safe, secure and certified weed killing services, Taylor Weed Control offers all that and then some. Our fully-licensed weed killing services are both effective and affordable, guaranteed to save your garden from any weedy worries you may have.

 

For more information on our lawncare and weed killing services from Taylor Weed Control, why not drop us a line today on 029 2039 7554 or click the button below to request a FREE survey.

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If weeds have taken over your garden and claimed it as their own, wrestling back control can seem like a mammoth task.

You could just bend the knee and admit defeat to your new perennial overlords, content with living out your days as a mere tenant on weedy land.

Failing that, you could fight back and give these weedy warriors a grass-kicking to remember!

If you would prefer to opt for the latter, you’re in the right place. Read on for the inside track on just how to remove weeds from a large area.