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The drizzle application is useful for managing plants in areas that are difficult to access. The drizzle nozzle will reach a target plant 15 to 20 feet away, while a flat fan nozzle may only reach plants 2 to 3 feet away. Because of larger spray droplets, the drizzle method also minimizes herbicide drift. The lower volume of water used also reduces sprayer refilling requirements and total weight, potentially reducing applicator fatigue.
In wildland settings, pokeweed can form dense stands outcompeting native plants and reducing forage for livestock and other mammals. In agricultural fields, pokeweed can contaminate agricultural produce. Pokeweed has become common as an urban and landscape weed where it outcompetes desirable plants. The berries can be extremely messy and potentially hazardous to inquisitive youth. All plant parts, especially the roots, contain numerous saponins and oxalates and can be fatally toxic to humans and livestock when ingested raw or with improper preparations. Severe digestive tract irritation is the primary symptom following ingestion.
Since drizzle applications use a higher concentrated herbicide solution, one gallon of mixed solution will adequately treat up to one-half acre of densely populated pokeweed.
Pokeweed is spread by seed and new occurrences are often seen where birds frequent. Monitoring for new seedlings in areas below tree canopies, along fence rows, and below other perches often provides the best strategy for surveillance and early detection.
Many residents have expressed interest in using vinegar or other organically accepted herbicide products to control pokeweed and other weeds. All of these products are contact herbicides and will only affect the part of the plant directly sprayed. Many of these products are botanically based oils (e.g., clove oil, eugenol, and d-limonene), or fatty acid soaps (e.g., pelargonic acid and nonanoic acid), or acetic acid. These products control weeds by destroying the leaf surface or causing cell leakage that rapidly leads to plant death. They may control small newly germinated pokeweed plants but will not control established perennial plants. Such products have no residual (lasting) activity, so seeds that germinate after application will not be controlled.
When air temperatures are higher than 80°F, it is better to use glyphosate or the amine formulation of triclopyr, since triclopyr ester is subject to vaporization.
Pruning: Where high aphid populations are localized on a few curled leaves or new shoots, prune these areas out and drop in soapy water to kill the aphids.
Prunus lusitanica can also suffer from Phytophthora, which may be seen in affected leaves as reddish or purplish discoloration.
Management & biological control:
Aphids have many natural enemies, including lady beetles, syrphid fly larvae, and green lacewings. Avoid broad-spectrum insecticide applications that would disrupt these controls.
If you are looking for a long term solution with no toxicity and some fringe benefits like doing your watering for you, motion activated sprinklers are highly recommended as a cat repellent.
Aphids (order Homoptera)