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Author Topic: Killing trees with herbicides?  (Read 1703 times)

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Offline Splaker

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Killing trees with herbicides?
« on: June 29, 2017, 07:17:52 am »
Hello folks,

I am looking for advice on the most effective commercial product available that will kill stubborn trees like box elder and black walnut.  They are sending out suckers and spreading their offspring throughout my property.  Would like to kill them to permanently remove or at least get them under control.

I have researched the following: Triclopyr, Glyphosate, 2 4 D.

If I squirt these types of products on the exposed cambium layer of said trees, will I see results? Which of these would you recommend?  Others?

Thanks very much in advance!

Offline WDH

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2017, 07:27:20 am »
Are you spraying the foliage or the cut stems?
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Offline Splaker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2017, 07:35:43 pm »
Possibly both... what would you do?  Most effectiveness is my goal!

Thanks!!

Offline Claybraker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2017, 07:47:44 pm »
That would depend on the size of the stems, and the number of stems.

Offline Splaker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2017, 08:53:02 pm »
I want to kill a few larger trees (over 8" diameter) and a lot of smaller ones (under 3").

Thanks

Offline WDH

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #5 on: June 29, 2017, 10:20:41 pm »
If you hack-n-squirt where you use a hatchet or machete to hack into the bark and squirt herbicide into the cut, Tordon is very effective.  Beware that it is soil active, so confine the herbicide to the cut and do not slop it all over the place and on the ground.  You can read the Tordon label to determine the details of the hack-n-squirt method, spacing between cuts, and the proper chemical concentration.  It is very effective.

If you spray the hardwood foliage, a 3% solution of Garlon 4 will do the job very well. 
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Offline Claybraker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #6 on: June 29, 2017, 10:48:25 pm »
Hack and squirt with Tordon RTU works like a charm, but here's a variation called drill and fill.

I transfer the Tordon to a quart spray bottle. Pro tip- label the spray bottle with the contents, because you might forget what's in the spray bottle.

Offline Splaker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #7 on: June 29, 2017, 11:05:59 pm »
If you hack-n-squirt where you use a hatchet or machete to hack into the bark and squirt herbicide into the cut, Tordon is very effective.  Beware that it is soil active, so confine the herbicide to the cut and do not slop it all over the place and on the ground.  You can read the Tordon label to determine the details of the hack-n-squirt method, spacing between cuts, and the proper chemical concentration.  It is very effective.

If you spray the hardwood foliage, a 3% solution of Garlon 4 will do the job very well.

Can you explain what you mean by "soil active"?  Do you mean it will kill other stuff nearby if it accidentally spills?  So if I can carefully manage to keep this on the target trees, will my soil and surrounding environment be safe from contamination?  Can it harm ground water/well water?  We have a drilled well but it's not close to where I need to apply this product, although I sure that contamination can spread throughout a ground water system...   

Thank you very much folks... I will give this a try!

Offline Ianab

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #8 on: June 29, 2017, 11:32:07 pm »
Quote
Can you explain what you mean by "soil active"?  Do you mean it will kill other stuff nearby if it accidentally spills?

Basically yes. Sprays like Roundup are only absorbed through the leaves of a plant. If you spray some on the ground, or the bark of another tree, nothing bad happens and it quickly breaks down.

Other sprays are "soil active" and can be absorbed through the roots, and often stay active in the soil longer. They all break down over time, so you aren't going to permanently poison the soil, but it's easier to get unwanted kills from over-spray if you aren't careful.

The "drill and fill" looks like a pretty controlled way of dealing to smaller trees as all the herbicide is kept in the hole, not being sprayed around, and maybe landing on things you don't want to kill.

Modern sprays have done away with ingredients like DDT and Dioxin that used to give worries about groundwater and long term contamination.
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Offline Splaker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #9 on: June 29, 2017, 11:45:55 pm »
Forgot to ask if there is a time of the year/season when it's best to apply?

thanks  :)

Offline Splaker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #10 on: June 29, 2017, 11:50:10 pm »
Quote
Can you explain what you mean by "soil active"?  Do you mean it will kill other stuff nearby if it accidentally spills?

Basically yes. Sprays like Roundup are only absorbed through the leaves of a plant. If you spray some on the ground, or the bark of another tree, nothing bad happens and it quickly breaks down.

Other sprays are "soil active" and can be absorbed through the roots, and often stay active in the soil longer. They all break down over time, so you aren't going to permanently poison the soil, but it's easier to get unwanted kills from over-spray if you aren't careful.

The "drill and fill" looks like a pretty controlled way of dealing to smaller trees as all the herbicide is kept in the hole, not being sprayed around, and maybe landing on things you don't want to kill.

Modern sprays have done away with ingredients like DDT and Dioxin that used to give worries about groundwater and long term contamination.

Thanks! We have very young kids so I will take precautions and keep them away from the applied areas for a while just to be on the safe side..

I am assuming RTU should be applied during dry periods so rain doesn't wash it away?

Offline WDH

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #11 on: June 30, 2017, 07:40:33 am »
Best applied while the plant is actively growing.  As long as you use the chemical 12 hours or more before a rain, you are good because the plant will absorb the chemical and no worries about rain washing out any chemical.  If it is very dry, better to wait until the trees are not stressed, otherwise they will not take up as much chemical and your treatment will be less effective.  The label describes when it is best to treat.  The best time for me is the Fall.  It is not as hot and it is nicer to be in the woods. 

As long as you confine the chemical to the cut or frill as it is called, you are good.  The only issue you might have is if another tree has grafted roots with the tree that you are treating and receives some damage from the chemical.  However, I have not found this to be a problem. 

The tiny amount that you spray in the frill does not pose any threat to the soil or groundwater.  No danger to your kids unless they play with the frills.  I use a squirt bottle like a Formula 409 cleaner bottle that has a trigger and you squirt a little stream of chemical in the frill.  The frill only has to penetrate the bark to the solid wood as the cambium is the actively growing area that you want to target.  On a cut stump, you only need to apply the chemical on the interface of the bark and the wood where the cambium is located.  Coating the whole stump does no good and just wastes chemical because you are just targeting the live cambium with the treatment.
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Offline Claybraker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #12 on: June 30, 2017, 10:29:04 am »
Unless it's raining sideways, the drill and fill method works fine anytime, and if you're working outside under those conditions, there's a possibility you have bigger issues.  On larger stems, by the time I've worked my way around them, I can usually fill the holes again, just to make sure I get the required amount of herbicide where it needs to be.

Foliar spraying with the "waving wand" method using a tank mix also works well, especially if you are treating many small stems. and allows you to cover some ground pretty quickly. A tank mix of glyphosate and Garlon 4 is going to give you a pretty broad spectrum of control. Once calibrated, I pre-mix my solution in one of those containers that allows me to refill my back pack sprayer with the correct number of ounces, per tank, and the biggest limiting factor is the amount of water I can transport to the area I'm working.

If it's really thick, I'll try the foliar spray first to cut some paths through the area, and once that's had time to work I can come back with a spray bottle of Tordon and cordless drill to pick off the survivors.

Offline Texas Ranger

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #13 on: June 30, 2017, 12:08:17 pm »
back in the day I used a hypohatchet (rather the crew did) with a hit every 3 inches around the stem and it squirted the right amount
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Offline Splaker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #14 on: June 30, 2017, 03:04:30 pm »
This has been very helpful and much appreciated... just looked at buying some RTU and a quart is $20 on Amazon - we cannot buy it up here in Canada commercially as our regulations on herbicide and pesticide use have become very strict.  So $20 and get this - shipping costs bring the total to $200!!!  My sister lives in Georgia (north of Atlanta) and she is visiting in August but wont be able to bring it because she's bringing a carry on luggage! So my only other option is to have it shipped to their house through Amazon or another retailer then she can ship it to me... this is too complicated!

One more question - if drilling or hack and squirting, should I target the base area of the tree or can I apply further up the trunk or some large branches?  Maybe all three areas?

Offline Claybraker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #15 on: June 30, 2017, 04:49:19 pm »
If she lives  north of Atlanta she can swing by and pick up a quart or 2 from me. I'm here in Cumming near Lake Lanier.  Sometimes TSC has Tordon RTU. but I can spare a quart or 2, and I'll throw in a gallon of Remedy (Garlon 4)  I've had for a few years, still unopened,  just to make it worth the trouble. That will come in handy for foliar spray-glyphosate won't do squat to box elder. How you get it to you  is your problem.

As far as the height, I try and work at a comfortable height.

Offline Splaker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #16 on: June 30, 2017, 09:14:50 pm »
If she lives  north of Atlanta she can swing by and pick up a quart or 2 from me. I'm here in Cumming near Lake Lanier.  Sometimes TSC has Tordon RTU. but I can spare a quart or 2, and I'll throw in a gallon of Remedy (Garlon 4)  I've had for a few years, still unopened,  just to make it worth the trouble. That will come in handy for foliar spray-glyphosate won't do squat to box elder. How you get it to you  is your problem.

As far as the height, I try and work at a comfortable height.

They are in Winder... I've fished Lanier! Nice striper fishing... we also go to Hartwell as they have a lake house there.. love it down there...

Will let you know if my bro-in-law can swing by and get some of your stuff.  He might need it himself...

Thanks very much!!

Offline Texas Ranger

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #17 on: June 30, 2017, 10:36:33 pm »
with the hypohatchets we hack at or above waist high.
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Offline Splaker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #18 on: September 06, 2017, 05:21:45 am »
So I recently received my Tordon RTU in the mail but before applying I have a bit of a concern since this stuff is very potent.  If I apply it to the trees/shrubs i intend to kill, what will happen to the nearby plants, trees, shrubs, soil?  I guess I am worried that the root system of the affected tree could disperse the chemical to adjacent trees/shrub root systems... also, is the soil in that immediate and surrounding spot affected negatively for any period of time?   For example, if I am ridding a planting site of an undesirably plant, should I not replant on the same spot for some time?  weeks/months in order to let the chemical disperse?

thanks for any help!!

Offline PA_Walnut

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #19 on: September 06, 2017, 06:07:11 am »
I'm not trying to be sarcastic or argumentative, but just curious as why not just cut them down?
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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #20 on: September 06, 2017, 08:32:56 am »
If cut they could likely grow back from the stump unless there is something there to routinely defoliate the sprouts (sheep/goats). 

Girdling is a chemical free option for many species.  More time consuming though.

I haven't figured out why he wants to kill Black Walnut.   ???  Many people put effort (big and small) in to get BW to grow well. 
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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #21 on: September 06, 2017, 12:33:02 pm »
Girdle the tree on an angle and put concentrated glyphosate into the cut and it will kill anything. Girdle it on an angle so that way when you pour in the glyphosate it will sit in the cut and not run down the trunk.
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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #22 on: September 06, 2017, 01:20:54 pm »
I can get tordon for 20.00 and change for a quart.  About how many beech trees that are 6 inches or so in diameter willa quart kill.  I downloaded the spec. Sheet but dont see the recipe for hack and squirt like i see people talking about.  Just a ball park figure if you please.   Banjo
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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #23 on: September 06, 2017, 01:46:50 pm »
I'm not trying to be sarcastic or argumentative, but just curious as why not just cut them down?

Because they will resprout - some species will do so repeatedly.
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Offline timberking

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #24 on: September 06, 2017, 03:26:54 pm »
Ranger, I thought the hypo-hatchet was rough till I saw a Jim-Gem.  Killed many an acre of good hardwood in S. Ark.  I remember many species had to have connecting cuts to assure mortality.   I am using a 30 year old gallon of Tordon that still does the trick.

Offline WDH

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #25 on: September 06, 2017, 03:30:29 pm »
If you hack and squirt, and if you confine the chemical to the hack (frill), and not slop the chemical on the ground, the chemical will only affect the plant that was hacked and squirted.  There is a possibility that the target plant has root grafted with a plant that you want to keep, and the graft will let the chemical into the plant that you want to save and kill it too, but I have found that that (Tom) is a very infrequent occurrence.  So infrequent that I would not worry about it.  Essentially confine the chemical to the target plant and you will be fine.  If you cut the target plants down, you can spray the outer rim of the cut stump with the chemical, being careful to keep the chemical on the circumference of the cut stump and not slop it all over the ground around it, and you will be OK.  This applies to soil active herbicides like Tordon. 

Herbicides like round-up and garlon are not soil active, so you do not have to be quite as careful.  The good thing about tordon is the it is very highly effective, and with bit of care in application, it will do a great job.  Just confine the chemical to the target hack or the outer edges of a cut stump and you will be OK.  You only need to spray the outer rim of a cut stump because that is where the cambium is, and that is what you want to target, not the wood in the middle of the stump because it will not take up the chemical anyway.
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Offline Splaker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #26 on: September 06, 2017, 06:35:36 pm »
I'm not trying to be sarcastic or argumentative, but just curious as why not just cut them down?

You guys have lilacs or box alders in the US? If you do cut one down and see what you have 3 months later...

I got lilacs coming up through my interlock pavers around my pool driveway, everywhere.. box alders growing along my neighbours fenceline.. don't know what side they are on now.. I am tryign to save thousands of dollars in repairs...

Offline Claybraker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #27 on: September 06, 2017, 07:15:23 pm »
I can get tordon for 20.00 and change for a quart.  About how many beech trees that are 6 inches or so in diameter willa quart kill.  I downloaded the spec. Sheet but dont see the recipe for hack and squirt like i see people talking about.  Just a ball park figure if you please.   Banjo
I use a cordless drill, and try for 1 ml for every 2" dbh. probably close to 300 6" trees it helps to transfer it to a quart spray bottle.  The goofy applicator might be ok for treating cut stumps but I don't like it.

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #28 on: September 06, 2017, 09:27:39 pm »
Claybraker ,Thanks for the reply.   I think you are saying a 6 inch tree would need 3 ml.  Are you putting that 3 ml. in one hole or 3 different holes around the tree.  Banjo
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Offline Claybraker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #29 on: September 06, 2017, 10:03:32 pm »
6" tree I make 2 or 3 holes. Sorta depends on my mood. I've got some syringes I use to measure epoxy to get a good idea of just how much is a ml.

Offline Splaker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #30 on: September 07, 2017, 08:11:40 am »
6" tree I make 2 or 3 holes. Sorta depends on my mood. I've got some syringes I use to measure epoxy to get a good idea of just how much is a ml.

How deep are you drilling into the tree, Claybraker?  Just past the bark and deep enough to hit the cambrian?  Also, why not "hack n squirt"?   

Would still like to hear from folks about my question on the effects of Tordon on the surroung plants and soil and whether plantings can be made after killing a tree in the vicinity of the treated tree.

Thanks

Offline Claybraker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #31 on: September 09, 2017, 10:03:30 am »
As shallow as I can to get a pocket that will hold 1 ml.  The problem I had with hack n squirt was getting a full ml where it needs to be without having most of it dribble down the bark.  Never really noticed it kills surrounding vegetation.

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #32 on: September 09, 2017, 03:13:16 pm »
I ran a herbicide crew for a number of years and never saw any additional plants effected.  If they root graft, all bets off.  We used hypo hatches so the cuts and fluid amounts were uniform.
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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #33 on: October 26, 2017, 10:08:09 pm »
Hey guys, what temps should this be stored at or does it matter?  i got it in a shed or can put in the garage but both locations get cold... garage can go below freezing in dead of winter and the shed several degrees below...

Offline Claybraker

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #34 on: October 27, 2017, 11:41:47 am »
Tordon RTU is about 73%  ethylene glycol. That's the "other ingredient" on the label.

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #35 on: October 27, 2017, 11:53:54 am »
Tordon RTU is about 73%  ethylene glycol. That's the "other ingredient" on the label.

Pardon my ignorance - does this make it ok to store in cold temps and in places where temps are highly variable ?

Offline ely

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Re: Killing trees with herbicides?
« Reply #36 on: October 27, 2017, 12:05:48 pm »
good til 10 below probably.