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As its name suggests, Japanese knotweed (Fallopia japonica) is native to the Far East. Once upon a time, this plant was to be found only in Japan and neighbouring territories like Korea and China.

Now, as we've previously discussed, Japanese knotweed wasn't - and still isn't - much of a problem in its homeland, simply because the local ecosystem keeps the plant in check.

But at some point, somebody had the bright idea of bringing Japanese knotweed over to Europe, where it was able to run rampant and cause all kinds of problems for us Westerners.

Read More: What Damage Can Japanese Knotweed Do?

This raises the question: just who do we blame for bringing Japanese knotweed to Europe?


Take a bow, Philipp Franz

Philipp Franz von Siebold (1796-1866) was a German doctor and botanist who spent several years in Japan back in the 1820s. Siebold played a key role in introducing Western medicine to Japan; unfortunately, he's also responsible for introducing Japanese knotweed to the Europe.

According to Leslie Anthony's book The Aliens Among Us, Japanese knotweed was part of a collection of live plants presented to Siebold by his Japanese hosts and transported back to Europe thereafter. Fallopia japonica was particularly well received - initially housed in an acclimatisation garden in the Netherlands, the plant was a big hit and even received a gold medal from the Utrecht Society of Agriculture & Horticulture.


Get your Japanese knotweed problem under control

The green-fingered Victorians who went gaga for Japanese knotweed in the 19th century probably never predicted that the plant would one day become the nuisance that modern Europeans know and loathe.

Nowadays, Japanese knotweed is considered an invasive species - under UK law, you can be fined thousands of pounds and even sent to prison if you help the plant to spread into the wild.

For that reason, we strongly recommend getting in touch with a specialist contractor if you've identified Japanese knotweed on your property.

Taylor Total Weed Control is a PCA-registered Japanese knotweed removal company with years of experience controlling this invasive species. Call 029 2039 7554 today to discuss your requirements and arrange a free Japanese knotweed survey.

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