Anatomy of Canadian Fleabane
How To Kill Canadian Fleabane
Canadian Fleabane is a large growing weed which can reach a height of around a metre. With leaves of a waxy and slightly hairy feel and appearance, and an abundance of white seed producing wooly flowers sit on top of its very tough and woody stem.
Despite its name, Canadian Fleabane is actually native to Asia, and most often seeds itself in opportunistic locations such as disused tracts of land, garden beds, and any areas which are not routinely maintained.
Spreading Of Canadian Fleabane
Canadian Fleabane spread its seeds from its multitude of flowers, with each seed attached to a fluffy Pappus or “hairy parachute” which can propel the seed in the wind over great distances.
The danger of this weed is greatly enhanced by the enormous number of seeds the plant can produce, an average of 60,000 seeds per weed is normal, with large plants producing up to 200,000 seeds. Canadian Fleabane seeds can last up to 20 years under natures miraculous storage system.
Controlling Canadian Fleabane
Canadian Fleabane is best eradicated when it’s young and under 30 cm, in this state it can be easily pulled, poisoned with Glyphosate, or whipper snipped. It is also unlikely to contain seeds at this stage.
At a more mature age, poisons work much less effectively, and it becomes too woody and tough to whipper snip effectively, hand pulling can also become difficult if the weed has established itself in optimum conditions and made a deep root system.
The greatest danger of leaving Canadian Fleabane to mature and then trying to remove it - is that when we try to pull it out or whipper snip it, the disturbance will cause the dispersal of its tens of thousands of seeds!
To safely remove Canadian Fleabane with seeds is to place and tie a plastic bag over the top of the seed heads, and then to pull it from the ground, roots and all. If it proves tough to pull out, a spade will aid in the process.