If it’s not a weed, is it knotweed?
Japanese Knotweed – a name which strikes fear into the heart of most within the property sector.
In Essex, we live in one of the main areas of the UK which is affected by this highly pervasive blight. It is around this time of the year that any prevailing Knotweed plants will have reached their maximum height and will shortly begin to retreat for the winter.
If you happen to notice the distinctive red, bamboo like stems and the large green, spade like leaves…you may have a problem! (I say may as there are other plants which bear similarities to Knotweed)
What can be done?
One option is to call in a removal firm to either dig out the plant along with several metres of soil around it, or to have it chemically treated. The cost for this is usually eye-watering.
Another option is to dig out the plant yourself. Not only is this backbreakingly difficult, but highly risky. You only need to leave a 1cm piece behind and it will grow again. This plant survives volcanic eruptions in its native Japan! Additionally, you cannot simply remove the plant and take it to the nearest tip – it is controlled waste as detailed by the Environmental Protection Act 1990.
Unusually I have also seen it suggested that you can eat the problem away. I for one have never eaten Japanese Knotweed as an entree to my steak, and nor am I likely to any time soon. But those more adventurous of you may fancy the challenge.
Whatever the ultimate solution, immediate action is highly advised.