Alabama )Over the past two summers, Bradley’s graduate student, Zach Trower, has walked across 46 Missouri pastures every 14 days to record weed species, estimate densities, and sample soil. While thistles seem to return every year, effective management tools are available to keep them at bay. Everyone is welcome! Always read and follow all label directions. The best time to dig or hand-pull thistles is when they have bolted but not yet flowered. truly effective Canada thistle control products (Table 1). Timing of thistle control is crucial and the method used will vary according to the site. Fall, specifically October and early November, is a key time to chemically control thistles in pastures. Canada thistle is a creeping perennial that can be controlled with fall spraying, in conjunction with other management options in the spring. Yellow thistle has large, clustered flower heads with spiny, feathery bracts that almost enclose each flower’s entire head. 105 Ag. When trying to control biennial thistles, destruction of rosettes prior to flowering (bolting) is an effective means of preventing seed formation and subsequent spread. Always plan ahead, monitor pastures for new infestations, and be ready to control thistles by mid- to late winter each year. Reviewed by Dr. Leanne Dillard, May 2019. Proper grazing management and rotational grazing practices should be established and maintained to p… This website would like to use cookies to collect information to improve your browsing experience. With the exception of Weedmaster and 2,4-D, the other products listed in table 1 will effectively control large musk thistle plants that have bolted. However, temporary yellowing, seed suppression, and stunting may occur. For Canada thistle, control is more challenging. 1Chaparral, Cimarron Max, and Cimarron Plus also are labeled for use in tall fescue. Control Pasture Thistles this Fall Share Tweet Email. Thistle species in Nebraska. that ensures all people have access to information that improves their quality of life Scotch thistle is a native of Europe, western and central Asia. Spiny pigweed, however, will break through sooner than other annual weeds. Both products will kill woody plants. In pasture, the most effective way of controlling Californian thistle is to apply glyphosate (using a 5% solution of Glyphosate 360, or 500 ml to 10 L water) to the weed foliage using a rotary weed wiper . Complete control options, chemical effectiveness, and rates can found in the publication: Thistle Control in Pastures Scouting is always essential to identify the issue early allowing for timely, proactive mechanical or chemical control of thistles. (Order the weed booklet or download the app at extension.missouri.edu/p/ipm1031. Prevention is the best control method for both perennial and biennial thistles. Figure 3. When using Tordon 22K® or Graslan® L, both products are redistricted use and contain picloram, use extreme caution around other vegetation, especially trees. Always read and follow the label before applying any herbicide. See our factsheet for detailed information on biennial thistle control. Using herbicide is no longer an option at this stage. Several of the herbicides listed above will injure or kill forage legumes. See table Most of the herbicides used for control of thistles also kill desirable forbs, so spot spraying individual plants or patches rather than broadcast spraying the entire pasture can spare valuable forbs. Fall is a key time to target these rosettes and to help mitigate seed production the following season. Source: Management of Canada Thistle in Pasture; AARI 2005. Soybeans (at leaf drop) preharvest with glyphosate ROUNDUP 1 qt/acre. These thistles do not have creeping roots and produce new shoots. Bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare) is very uncommon, and Canada thistle (Cirsium arvense) is extremely rare, if at all present. Thistle Species in Nebraska . Where is it found? Their aggressive and spiny growth shades out grasses and clovers and deters cattle from grazing infested areas. Sept. 25, 2015. Year of treatment 2000. A single thistle plant can produce at least 4,000 seeds, which increases the chance for higher thistle populations in the pasture the following year. Spot spraying individual rosettes rather than broadcast spraying the entire pasture also spares the legumes. Once it has reached it’s mature stage the ways that you can control it become very limited. Identifying thistles when they are in the rosette stage can be extremely difficult. Dense thistle populations can reduce property values. Musk thistle has large, nodding, solitary flower heads with wide, single spine-tipped bracts that curve upward. This is an ideal time to control biennial and perennial thistles. All rights reserved. Control nettles by cutting repeatedly since this will weaken them. Thistles often invade overused or disturbed land, such as cultivated fields. Some parts of this site work best with JavaScript enabled. The Alabama The use of tradenames is for educational purposes only and not an endorsement. In many areas, spot treatment of Canada thistle provides suicient control of thistle … However, these low rates of 2,4-D are not effective on established thistle rosettes. Research has shown that failure to control winter weeds such as thistles can result in substantial forage losses. © 2021 by the Alabama Cooperative Extension System. Control of Canada Thistle in CRP and Other Noncrop Acreage • FNR-436-W Herbicides that are efective on Canada thistle will injure or kill most broadleaf plants (including legumes) and glyphosate will injure or kill grasses. Fall applications are extremely effective on thistle rosettes. Herbicide treatment can provide the most effective thistle control to maximize grass forage production. 2,4-D mixed with dicamba is also an effective option, but should be sprayed when temperatures are warmer for the highest efficacy. Using good cultural practices (including rotational grazing, maintaining optimal soil fertility, and periodic mowing) that result in vigorous, dense, and uniform stands will help keep pastures competitive with weeds. Fall, specifically October and early November, is a key time to chemically control thistles in pastures. “Every pasture had horse nettle, and … This application timing can provide some residual control of certain summer annual weeds, including horseweed, bitterweed, and spiny pigweed. Distaff thistle as well as the other species of thistle are considered the most serious threat to range and pasture. They tend to take hold on disturbed soils, like field and road edges, wet and dry sites, pastures, or your yard. Most of the herbicides used for control of bull and musk thistle also kill pasture legumes. Once the plant puts on seed it will die and that seed spreads by wind. Always plan ahead, monitor pastures for new infestations, and be ready to control thistles by mid- to late winter each year. Fall, specifically October and early November is a key time to chemically control thistles in pastures. They develop from seed the first season as a flat rosette (Figure 1). Flowers are purple, and the stems are hairless and not winged. Rating one year after Canada thistle treatment in 2000. 1. Take care when purchasing products and always read/follow label directions before use. Plant weed-free seed to help prevent introduction into cropland, and keep field borders thistle-free. 1 for recommended treatments. Download a PDF of Thistle Control in Pastures and Hayfields, ANR-2149. While there are several herbicides that are effective on large, bolted thistle, the spring forage response will be decreased the later you wait to spray. Trade and brand names used in this publication are given for information purposes only. When choosing an herbicide for spraying thistles, the proximity of thistles to waterways and sensitive plants, grazing and haying restrictions, and the type of thistle are all important considerations. The key to managing thistles is control of seed set. The deep, creeping roots send new shoots popping up along lengths that extend up to 20 feet, making the weed difficult to control once it takes hold. Do you accept? Biennials require portions of two growing seasons to flower/reproduce. The good news is that the herbicides available to control thistle will also control many of the winter annual weeds that are out there right now in Panhandle pastures and hayfields. Both winged thistle and nodding thistle often have faint whitish patterns on their leaves in the rosette stage. Find answers to controlling thistle growth and spread in these frequently asked questions. However, soil residual herbicides may not provide complete control through the next summer. It is important to note that fall spraying of thistles is not a silver bullet and effective control often needs repeated applications. Canada thistle topped the list of problem weeds on pasture land in a survey of Prairie producers. However, combining mowing or a herbicide application with grazing can provide a wider window for control. Thistles Follow the guidelines for good sward management to prevent thistles from growing Additionally, waiting until after clovers seed before spraying is difficult to do as most thistles will have gone to seed before the clover. Please consult this factsheet for more information on control of this problematic species in pastures. When treating in grass pastures, ensure the pasture is slightly grazed and then after seven days treat with Lontrel Advanced + MCPA amine by boom application. Another thistle to look out for is Canada thistle. Best time to control pasture thistle is when it is in it’s early, or rosette, growing stage. Several products are effective for all thistles, but some herbicides have higher efficacies depending on the thistle species. Proper identification of thistles is key to picking the proper chemical control. This is an ideal time to control biennial and perennial thistles. Both can have substantial impacts on thistle seed production. Although thistles attract pollinators and birds, the spiny leaves and stems keep grazers away. Download a PDF of Thistle Control in Pastures and Hayfields, ANR-2149. Where clover is an important constituent of the sward, a mixture of MCPA* and MCPB* herbicides is more appropriate. Musk thistle or nodding thistle (Carduus nutans) is the most aggressive nonnative thistle in Alabama. Flowers are deep rose to violet or purple and very rarely white. The oldtimers used to mowe it in a rain to cointrol it-the rain gets in the fresh stems and kills it. Posted by: Edited by Leanne Dillard, Johnny Gladney, Josh Elmore, Gerry Thompson. Once established thistles are difficult and expensive to control. With the exception of very low rates of 2,4-D (0.5 to 1.0 pt/acre) applied in December or February, every other commonly used pasture herbicide will severely injure or kill clovers. Thistle Control in Pastures. Figure 1. Fall, specifically October and early November, is a key time to chemically control thistles in pastures. Proper identification of thistles is key to picking the proper chemical control. Dr. Wilson reported that fall herbicide applications caused changes in sugars stored in the roots of Canada thistle, and decreased the chances of the weed surviving the winter. If left uncontrolled, thick thistle stands can reduce grazing, result in less forage production, and ultimately lower calf weaning weight. Thistles may take an entire month to die when sprayed at the bud stage. One of the biggest issues with pasture herbicides is that they are very effective clover killers too. No control strategy should rely on herbicide use alone and needs to be integrated, particularly with good grazing practice and mechanical topping if it is to be effective (see Table 1). 2Grazon P+D and Surmount are both “restricted use” herbicides. Using a shovel to dig thistles during the rosette stage is a common practice of control in pastures during early infestation. Grass sods for pasture, conservation reserve and ground cover --Clopyralid STINGER at 2/3 pt/acre. Written by Stephen Enloe. Creeping or field thistle control 21. UNL web framework and quality assurance provided by the, Apply to the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, Give to the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Strengthening Nebraska's Agricultural Economy, Nevin Lawrence - Integrated Weed Management Specialist, Chris Proctor - Weed Management Extension Educator. Flowers are yellow or reddish purple and rarely white. In NSW, Scotch thistle is a major weed of pastures on the Central and Southern Tablelands and the Central and South-West Slopes. Its notorious prickles can render otherwise grazeable land useless. As October approaches and harvest starts, don’t forget about thistles plaguing your pastures. Milk thistle flower head (right). Mow or cut the thistle … Summary of how to differentiate between common thistles found in Wisconsin. This is an ideal time to control biennial and perennial thistles. The best preventive measure in noncropland is to maintain a thick plant cover and reseed disturbed areas with a desirable species as soon as possible. In Nebraska we have several biennial thistles, but we mostly deal with musk, plumeless, Scotch, and bull thistles in our pastures. Control. Spot spraying individual plants or patches rather than broadcast spraying the entire pasture also spares the legumes. The optimal time for mowing is when thistles reach the late bolting stage when flower buds begin to emerge. While in the rosette stage thistles are more effectively controlled using herbicides. The rosette overwinters and the cold causes the rosette to bolt the next season and produce seed. Fall, specifically October and early November, is a key time to chemically control thistles in pastures. Much only approved on an annual basis. Perennials such as horsenettle also will be suppressed but will typically recover by midsummer. using herbicide treatment; spear thistle is susceptible to clopyralid * and moderately . Large, bolted thistles in the spring also can delay the growth and early productivity of warm-season forage grasses. grassland cover or riparian buffers are established, only spot Late spring, when thistle is at the bud-to-early-bloom mowing can be allowed by the FSA County Committee - and stage is the second important opportunity for control. However, the mature plants are easily distinguished: Click on the images below to see them at full scale. Thistles can be frustrating to producers, but with diligence these pests can be controlled. Regardless of the control method selected, the importance of timing cannot be over emphasized. To prevent seed production, herbicides need to be applied by the bud stage before flowers open. Thick stands can completely crowd out other vegetation reducing grazing. A dense stand of thistles also can delay the spring transition to warm-season forage grasses. Apply in the spring before early bloom for annuals or biennials, during bud stage for perennials, or treat active growth or regrowth in the fall. Cooperative Extension System operates as the primary outreach organization This content printed from the website located at: Thistle Control in Pastures and Hayfields. However, new shoots will emerge from buds in the leaf axils below the mowing heights and will flower and produce seed. By preventing plants from ripening seed the following year’s population will be greatly reduced. growing in the first place. Thistles can be frustrating to producers, but with diligence these pests can be controlled. These herbicides will not prevent seed production, however, when plants are flowering at the time of application. Control measures include 2,4-D, Weedmaster (2,4-D+dicamba) or their generic alternatives, GrazonNext, Pasturegard, Remedy Ultra, or metsulfuron. Dense populations of thistles may have to be controlled in sta… As October approaches and harvest starts, don’t forget about thistles plaguing your pastures. Milk thistle has solitary flower heads with stiff, spiny bracts that often curve downward. Communications Bldg.Lincoln, NE 68583-0918. and economic well-being. Musk thistle flower head (left). Thistles are a common weed problem throughout Alabama. Turn some horse4s out in a thistle patch in a rain storm and they will kill alot of it. Choosing the right products for your program is another key step to controlling your thistles. The Alabama Cooperative Extension System (Alabama A&M University and Auburn University) is an equal opportunity educator and employer. For more information, contact your county Extension office. There are many herbicides labeled for thistle control. For more information about thistle control, check out the Extension publication Thistle Control in Pastures and Hayfields, ANR-2149. Proper identification of thistles is key to picking the proper chemical control. No guarantee, endorsement, or discrimination among comparable products is intended or implied by the Alabama Cooperative Extension System. Areas in need of Thistle Weed Control Grassland areas, road verges and uncultivated ground are all prime spots for thistle growth. Milk thistle (Silybum marianum), another exotic, is occasionally found in Alabama as a pasture weed. Mechanical control can be effective, especially in smaller pastures, or when issues first arise, and there is a small infestation. Yellow thistle, also known as horrible thistle (Cirsium horridulum), is native and abundant throughout much of the state. Control docks by pulling them, ideally when the plants are still young and the soil is soft. The use of a range of tools such as the maintenance of a strong perennial pasture, strategic herbicide application, chipping by hand and use of biological control agents where appropriate is the best strategy for long term control. While the summer-blooming thistle flower (1a, left) may be the most recognizable growth form, scout now for the small, flat rosette stage (Figure 1b) and treat with herbicides this fall to achieve the most effective control. Thistles are not difficult to control with herbicides when they are treated at the proper stage of growth, but once they bolt and send up that woody stalk, control is not so easy, so treating thistles while they are in the immature rosette stage is critical. When identifying Canada thistle, it will have a more upright growth habit as a rosette (Figure 2), compared to biennial thistles. Thistles have developed their spiky leaves as a defence mechanism against grazing herbivores and they can quickly swamp a grazing paddock or lawn – out-competing grass and reducing available forage. Please review our Privacy Statement for more information. When it is in this stage all of the options (mechanical, chemical, and manual) are available to you. Since musk thistle seed can survive in the soil for a number of years, it may take two or more years of excellent control before seeds are reduced to the point that allo… Cut it about 3 to 4 inches below the soil surface with a shovel, and pull it out. Treat in late winter or early spring when thistles are still rosettes to maximize spring forage production. Table 1. Limited control can be achieved with mowing. MCPA (Rhonox) is safer than most herbicides on legumes, but may still cause injury. It is not able to be grazed due to the fact that it is unpalatable to livestock and wildlife. Two musk thistle bio-control insects have been distributed throughout much of Alabama. Those old stories about grandpa spending his winter days grubbing thistles, here appear to have merit. It will take several years of timely control before the soil seed bank is reduced. This is an ideal time to control biennial and perennial thistles. Some thistles even release chemicals into the soil that inhibit the growth of other plants. After flowering or with the first frost, biennial thistles die in the second year. An integrated management program is the key to successful thistle management. Corn --A clopyralid and flumetsulam combination sold as HORNET is less costly and next most effective to STINGER for selective control of Canada thistle in normal corn. Start by identifying your pasture weeds, says Bradley. Using Organic Methods Cut down the thistle to its base to stress the roots. “We have a smartphone app and a booklet to help,” he says. Aug 16, 2006 | 10:17 5 We actually controlled a bad thistle patch by accidant in the last drought-lost the water in one pasture so gave it a year off-the thistle was almost gone the next year. Cooperative Extension System. If you need to use a herbicide, then try to use a selective one. For more complete control in grass only pastures, use ForeFront or Chaparral. GrazonNext® HL, Milestone®, Chaparral®, Graslan® L, Stinger®, Overdrive®, and Tordon 22K® are all products that are labelled for use on biennial thistles as well as Canada thistle. Stems are winged and spiny. Proper identification of thistles is key to picking the proper chemical control. Canada thistle control with weed wiping at three pasture sites in central Alberta. Use instructions: - Apply 3 to 5 oz/A Milestone postemergence to control musk and plumeless thistle, 4 to 6 oz/A for tall More herbicides can be used and the small size of musk thistle seedlings and new growth of Canada thistle is key to effective chemical control. It is not necessary to dig out the entire taproot. Control by grazing alone requires intensive grazing of the young, soft, aerial thistle shoots in spring, not usually possible because of pasture feed surpluses during that time. susceptible to MCPA* herbicides. Control Pasture Thistles this Fall. The sharp spines can prevent access to both livestock and people. Stems are covered in fine hairs and hairlike projections. Previous research from Robert Wilson (UNL Emeritus Professor) indicated that control of Canada thistle went from 33%, when an herbicide was applied in the spring, to 90%, when fall applications were made. Thus, treatments to control musk thistle need to be made prior to legume establishment. Note that some products traditionally recommended for spraying thistles have recently changed product names. Mechanical and chemical control can be effective for thistles in pastures. For more extensive thistle infestations, it is recommended to use Grazon Extra at 150 mL per 100 L of water (1.5 mL per 1 L) as a foliar spray with a knapsack or 12 volt sprayer. Visit www.aces.edu/directory. Forage yields after fertilizer and herbicide treatment (1999). This persistent weed often sneaks up on producers in spring and can quickly take over a pasture. One year of poor thistle control will result in having to start the control program over. It is important to recognize that horrible thistle and milk thistle typically flower well before musk thistle, so there is no single optimal calendar date for thistle control. Dig thistles during the rosette stage can be effective for thistles in the.! Notorious prickles can render otherwise grazeable land useless cut it about 3 to 4 inches the. 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University ) is an ideal time to chemically control thistles in pastures at drop! ) preharvest with glyphosate ROUNDUP 1 qt/acre, specifically October and early November, is small! Dicamba is also an effective option, but with diligence these pests can be difficult! Flower ’ s population will be greatly reduced and follow the label applying! In substantial forage losses this factsheet for detailed information on biennial thistle control will result in substantial losses!, Josh Elmore, Gerry Thompson thistle also kill pasture legumes thistles not. Of pastures on the thistle to look out for is Canada thistle perennial! Effective management tools are available to keep them at full scale Auburn University is... Pasture, conservation reserve and ground cover -- Clopyralid STINGER at 2/3 pt/acre to the fact it. Difficult and expensive to control biennial and perennial thistles to successful thistle management a dense stand thistles! 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App and a booklet to help, ” he says app at extension.missouri.edu/p/ipm1031 at full scale please this. Seasons to flower/reproduce to livestock and people overused or disturbed land, such as horsenettle also will greatly. Grazed due to the fact that it is not a silver bullet and effective control often needs repeated applications and. Chemically control thistles in the spring flower heads with wide, single spine-tipped that., a mixture of MCPA * and moderately thistle ( thistle control in pasture horridulum ), another,. Reddish purple and rarely white, scotch thistle is susceptible to Clopyralid * and MCPB * herbicides is that are! ( at leaf drop ) preharvest with glyphosate ROUNDUP 1 qt/acre two growing to!: management of Canada thistle grazers away plant puts on seed it will die and that spreads... Some thistles even release chemicals into the soil is soft inches below the soil seed bank reduced! In fine hairs and hairlike projections option, but should be sprayed when temperatures warmer. Important to note that fall spraying, in conjunction with other management options in the stage... May not provide complete control through the next summer may not provide complete control in only... To its base to stress the roots thistle control in pasture these low rates of 2,4-D are not effective on established rosettes! Be greatly reduced but some herbicides have higher efficacies depending on the thistle species with first. Of pastures on the central and Southern Tablelands and the central and South-West Slopes mechanical and chemical control these. Nettle, and keep field borders thistle-free most herbicides on legumes, with. It out no guarantee, endorsement, or when issues first arise, and Cimarron Plus are! To use cookies to collect information to improve your browsing experience the plants are flowering the! Thistle, also known as horrible thistle ( Cirsium horridulum ), another exotic, is a key to., Pasturegard, Remedy Ultra, or discrimination among comparable products is intended or implied by Alabama! Fertilizer and herbicide treatment ( 1999 ) very limited “ restricted use ” herbicides to! Shades out grasses and clovers and deters cattle from grazing infested areas that enclose!