How to kill grass around a tree?

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  #1  
Old 04-16-09, 04:00 PM
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How to kill grass around a tree?

I'd like to get rid of the grass that's growing around a weeping cherry tree, so I can mulch around the tree. The tree is about 12-15 ft wide, drip line, so we're talking about a 30 ft diameter circle to eliminate grass. What's the best way to kill the grass without killing the tree?
It's not practical to use a roto-tiller, the tree roots are right at the surface.

1) Chemical weed killer that kills grass? Or would that possibly hurt the tree?
2) Cover the grass with black plastic sheeting for a couple weeks until it dies? Or could that hurt the tree also?
3) Put down landscape fabric (the stuff that supposedly lets water through)? I can't leave this down permanently, however, since the ground is sloped and any mulch would just run off of the fabric (been there done that).
4) Any other ideas?
 
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Old 04-18-09, 04:12 PM
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I would start with a flat shovel and remove the lawn as deeply as possible. Then I'd cover the area with 6 layers of DAMPENED newspaper to smother any roots left over. Dampen the newspaper as you go so the slightest breeze won't have you chasing all over the neighborhood. Been there... then you can put down your mulch. A shredded mulch will stay put much better then chips or chunks. Also make a bit of a rise to the outer edge of the mulch on the down slope side. Less chance of it washing away.
http://www.treesaregood.com/treecare/mulching.aspx

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Old 04-18-09, 04:47 PM
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If you chose to go with chemical grass killers,RoundUp would do this job and would not hurt the tree.

RoundUp kills what it is applied to but does not contaminate the soil.You only have to lightly cover the grass blades once.

RoundUp would not have any preventative effect,nor will any of the mentioned procedures,so you will have to remove new growth which will sprout in mulch even with cloth down etc.

Under the Preen label there are some weed preventative products that would give you some longer lasting help but I'm not sure if there would be any effect on a tree.Trees are a different class of plant and it may simply be too large to be impacted anyway.

Do not use any broadleaf weed killers and especially brush killers.Do not use any product that does not say you can reseed soon behind it as that means they have a longer effect or leave a contaminating residue in the soil.

Knowledgeable saleshelp at a local hardware store or garden center can help you pick out products from their inventory as retail stock can vary.
 
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Old 04-18-09, 05:25 PM
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Before you decide to use Round Up, you might want to read this site. It's not so much the glyphosate, but the 'inert' ingrediants that aren't listed that can become a problem. Here's a partial quote.
http://www.pan-uk.org/pestnews/Actives/glyphosate2.htm


Environmental fate and ecological impact of glyphosate
In formulated products POEAs were found to be more toxic than other surfactants and – when used according to label recommendations under normal use conditions – could be lethal to bluegill sunfish in very shallow water (less than 10 cm depth)(48). Exposure of tadpoles to low concentrations of glyphosate formulation for a short time revealed sublethal effects and led to significant mortality(49). Indirect effects of cereal herbicides including glyphosate are associated with the decline of 11 bird species in the UK(50).
Degradation of glyphosate in soil was found to be slow(51). A study in Denmark has found that: ‘glyphosate, when applied in late autumn, can leach through the root zone [1m below ground soil] at unacceptable concentrations in loamy soil’; average concentrations exceeded the European Drinking Water Standard (0.1 µg/l) at two sites for glyphosate, and at one for aminoethylphosphonic acid, a degradation product detected over one and a half years after application(52). The Danish government has proposed to restrict the use of glyphosate, preventing its use during the autumn and winter on clay soils where the risk of leaching is high within heavy rainfall. The restriction is due to come into force in 2004.

Conclusion
It is often argued that glyphosate is an alternative to the use of herbicides with higher acute toxicities, such as 2,4-D or paraquat. However, there exists sufficient evidence that glyphosate can cause harmful chronic effects to health, and the Danish study on surface waters revealed an unforeseen way of behaviour in the environment. The use of glyphosate should be reduced substantially, especially in developing countries, to minimise acute and chronic effects on wildlife and human health.
Another quote from this site in the last paragraph at the bottom of the page:
http://www.growbiointensive.org/news-0511-agnotes.htm

• The information in this article comes from “Not So ‘Inert’ after All?” in the May 2005 HortIdeas: Two biochemists at a French University did a study on Roundup. They “looked at two different ways that Roundup might cause pregnancy problems in mammals. They looked at Roundup’s toxicity to placenta cells, as well as Roundup’s ability to inhibit an important enzyme, called aromatase, that synthesizes a sex hormone. Next they compared Roundup to glyphosate, the ‘active’ ingredient in Roundup. Differences between the two are related to the inert ingredients in Roundup” [which are not required to be named on the label]. “The researchers found that Roundup damaged placenta cells ‘at least 2 times more efficiently than glyphosate.’ The concentration of Roundup that inhibited the enzyme was four times less than the concentration of glyphosate.” The inert ingredients “probably make the glyphosate more available to living cells by making it easier for the glyphosate to penetrate inside them.”
Newt
 
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Old 04-20-09, 06:10 AM
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This go to say with any product in use. Care must be taken into consideration when using any chemical. This is why, chemical companies spent millions of $$$$ just to keep the patent or bring a new product into the market.
It's all on how it is used.

I personally believe if used in small quanitites would be safe without the possibility of contamination to the tree or the soil.
I savely use round up in landscape bed with smaller shrubs than a tree.
Around flower? yes.
All with out the effect of shrub or flower dying.

Contamination to the water supply however, has alway been a factor when dealing with chemical.

Depending on the turf type. There are other methods that can be used and still get the same results.

So,

The question then becomes. Are chemical safe?
Yes.

But, only when the product is used as it was intended.
With properly following label directions.
And using Personal protection equipment. P.P.E.
Lastly,
and most improtantly
the sucess rate increase when using chemical if you properly id the plant in question and use the proper product in which it was designed.
 
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Old 04-20-09, 01:27 PM
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Originally Posted by (Wi)Roots View Post
So,

The question then becomes. Are chemical safe?
Yes.

But, only when the product is used as it was intended.
With properly following label directions.
And using Personal protection equipment. P.P.E.
Lastly,
and most improtantly
the sucess rate increase when using chemical if you properly id the plant in question and use the proper product in which it was designed.
With no disrespect meant, this is just your opinion and not based on scientific research.
http://www.akaction.org/PDFs/Glyphosate_facts.pdf

Newt
 
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Old 04-20-09, 07:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Newt View Post
With no disrespect meant, this is just your opinion and not based on scientific research.
http://www.akaction.org/PDFs/Glyphosate_facts.pdf

Newt
2,4-d would be considered moveable in the soil right?
Which is the most moveable of them?
dicamba.


So,
you could say pre emergent is also?

Even ferilizer like nitro is moveable. As well as P and K.

Some State forbid the use of some neutrient which I deem sad.
Here we are unable to use Phosphours.
Why? Algaebloom. Mostly I would say directly related to cattle, and human waste.

Never the less. Restricted.

After all we are only talking ppm. In case studys right?

It's ok to post all the fact an figure but, this only one side of the story.

Let's bring up a great product thats no long here. Diazon. Dursban, and now Msma is under the gun.

Why?
Abuse. (the mentality of a little more is better attitude)

Scientific study?

Fact!.

All I'm saying is round up under the tree will Not kill it. If sprayed with out drinching.

Heck,

You can get top kill from 2,4-d in high quanities. ( Which is a systemic herbicide ) Only to leave the undergrowth to come back later.

This is why, you should follow the labels directions.

And if you should happen to google it, you will find there are now some spiecies of weed are no longer affected by round up.

Why,


The plant eventually become imune to it when there is no rotation in the selective though when it come to chosing and using the same herbicide over and over, year after year.
Now,
I don't expect the general public to understand all the Law that govern each of our States. But, as we begin to lose more and more privileges it become more important to be educated responsible applicators.

Home owners or otherwise.

Lastly,

I haven't read your link. What it all boil down to is run off.
Just don't applicate in an area you think will eventually lead to a stream, gutter, pond, lake.......etc.

Evenually,
Round up will become food for micro organisim already in the soil...............Fact.
 
  #8  
Old 05-06-13, 02:43 AM
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stick to the question

With all do respect... The question asked was simply what to use to kill the grass without harming the tree. Not what studies in the UK say about how it may effect ground water and the effect of chemicals on the placenta of mammals (are you freaking serious), or the spawning of sunfish. For all you know he could live far in the country like myself where the water comes from a lake 20 miles away where there are no wells or significant water brought up from the water table anywhere around here.... so in the grand scheme of things is my little roundup jug going to effect any of this... NO. So.... use roundup that's what its here for, your tree will be fine.
 
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Old 05-06-13, 04:09 AM
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Considering the question is 4 years old, maybe they found a solution. Check the dates.
 
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