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2 years ago

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This year is the year of wild parsnip that induces "burns" from contact and then exposure to sunlight. I have been talking with our Township about cutting them along our roadsides before they set seeds. But I am told that because of the lack of funding, they are cutting back on roadside mowing, probably to just once a year late in summer. That is absolutely useless in my opinion. I pointed out to them that the purpose of mowing roadsides is to keep the invasive and damaging weeds from spreading. They shrugged their shoulders. My farm is mostly pasture that I rent out each summer for beef cattle. Fighting invasive plants such as thistles, autumn olive and multi-flora rose is almost a year 'round activity. I do NOT want to fight wild parsnip as well. This year wild parsnip is blanketing the sides of roads and well beyond the effective mowing stage. At this point, mowing will just serve to spread seed. I was also told that "environmental groups" want the roadsides to be left alone as cover for bunnies, fawns and other small animals as well as native plants. I consider myself to be aware of the environment and environmental practices but leaving invasive and harmful plants to grow on the roadsides?

K.C. Fox says 2016-07-21 12:42:49 (CST)

If we don't spray our ground for those bad weeds the Weed district manager gets after us and fines or forces us to take care of the weeds. you need to call your weed district manager and turn the county or state in.

2 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Mike Rock says 2016-07-21 14:39:17 (CST)

We're east of you, between Blanchardville, New Glarus and Argyle.
This is the worst year for wild parsnip I have ever seen. The township will fine us for invasive weeds in our pastures but the roadside is left unmowed. Phytophotodermatitis is the nasty thing that wild parsnip does to you. Little brother spent an afternoon in 1962 pulling those nasty weeds. He looked like heck for two months. After the blisters and pus his arms and hands and neck and part of his face turned grey black for a long time. Pigmentation changes are common with this stuff. NASTY!!

At least the pigs eat it!!

heat index 113 so inside for a while.

Just hung up 86 bundles of a dozen garlic plants each. Fifty to go. They'll air dry in the chicken house/harness house for a few weeks before we cut the tops and roots off.


2 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

NoraWI says 2016-07-21 17:04:34 (CST)

K.C. Fox, there is no longer any mandate, fines nor a "weed district manager" for eradicating noxious weeds. As a matter of fact, I could get turned in by my organic neighbor for spraying along our shared roadway. I am not for all-out spraying again. However, the approved way to control weeds by mowing should be adhered to unless we wish to be completely overrun with the noxious stuff. Just venting...

2 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

So. Oh. Bill says 2016-07-23 22:02:51 (CST)

There was a very good article on wild parsnips in last weeks Farm World paper. It seems that the early settlers brought them from Europe for a food supply.
I personally am sick of all of the invasive plants and animals that we have to fight every day. On our farm in south west Ohio, It was multiflora rose first, then the Japanese honeysuckle and now it's the Russian olive that is taking over. My next door neighbor is a power plant with 800 acres of greenbelt that is nothing more than a seed nursery area to feed the birds that spread problem. I think that the only control for this is a lot of goats that could only keep it in check, but not stop the next crop of bird poop from starting the next crop.
just whining !!!!!
Bill Lemar

2 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

JerryHicks says 2016-07-25 05:55:18 (CST)

The wild parsnip is a plant that should be treated with the utmost care. I had a friend stop by our place when I first bought it who went on and on about all the wild parsnips we had. I had never seen one, so took his word for it. I started looking up ways to cook wild parsnips and found out what we had was not wild parsnips. It was poison hemlock. I went on to read that there are several deaths a year from people confusing the two and eating poison hemlock by mistake. We have a lot of trouble with invasives as well. The woods on the neighboring properties are covered in Oriental honeysuckle and russian olive. We go out in the spring when the soil is soft and moist and pull as many plants as we can. We pull them and hang them upside down on cedar limbs so that the roots dry out. I cut all the more mature plants that I see. The multifora rose seems to be dying back on it's own. I had read that there was a blight discovered that would kill it. A friend who worked for the fish and wildlife department here in Ky told me that they had brought some in on the state game farm and introduced it to their wild roses. Apparently it worked, but they stopped when they found that it could spread to domestic roses. I still have brown spots on my side from cutting wild parsnips 13 years ago and getting some of the sap on my skin. It's some nasty stuff.

2 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Klaus Karbaumer says 2016-07-26 20:45:44 (CST)

It is noticeable this year as one drives along the roads and highways that maintenance of shoulders and ditches has diminished. This is a direct consequence of smaller budgets which the "smaller government" crowd has been demanding for years. State after state where these policies together with cutting taxes has been implemented successfully has cut back.
Now, as much as I can understand that adjacent property owners do not like to see invasive species spreading I can tell you that this is just the beginning. We all will have to adjust to new realities when it sinks in, that the one substance that this society has built its entire mode on, namely oil, is available only in ever shrinking quantities( I admit that in the moment due to Saudi Arab power politics it doesn't really look like that). When that happens and it is inevitable, shoulders and ditches not taken care of will be our least worries!
A good knowledge of the wild flora will be helpful as well as tough skin!

2 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

So. Oh. Bill says 2016-07-27 22:19:45 (CST)

Has anyone seen the buttercup plant ? It is a very pretty little yellow flower that has five small yellow petals with a bloom that is about 1/2 " across and grows from one to two feet tall. it is very poisonous to all livestock. This is the first year that we have seen this plant in our pastures and we don't know where it came from. We feel that it had to have blown into our area since it showed all at once in a five mile area just east of the Ohio river. It does respond to the Crossbow spray with good results.
What next !!!!!!

2 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Dan in Illinois says 2016-08-03 21:14:19 (CST)

In my township in Shelby county the landowners mow the roadsides.

2 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

NoraWI says 2016-08-08 07:24:19 (CST)

Oh, we mow the roadsides alright but lack the equipment to do the sharply inclined sides that the Township does with a tilting mower extension. They bought this equipment and a new tractor to run it at great cost about 10 years ago. About 40 years ago, to get a greater share of DOT money for road maintenance, our Township declared all driveways to be Township property. Our farm is right on a dead end road with no driveway so didn't qualify, which was fine with me. Now they would love to give up all those driveways because DOT money has almost disappeared. In any case, lack of roadside maintenance if fully evident this year with the proliferation of the wild parsnip, multiflora rose and other invasives, many of which were actually brought in by the NRCS, the DNR and other government agencies many years ago for "wildlife food." Nonsense!

2 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Fort Causeway says 2016-08-08 22:28:51 (CST)

Encourage your local conservation district to pass a mandate that Prescriptive Multi Species Grazing should always take precendence over mechanical and later chemical weed control.
Spend money on assisting beginning farmers and FFA kids to have access to graze right of ways in the growing season. Lord knows they can't afford to buy a farm and graze it at the exorbitant land prices posted these days.

2 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

NoraWI says 2016-08-09 20:41:28 (CST)

And how do you propose these young farmers contain their multi species stock on these unfenced rights of way? Few farms even have fences anymore as more and more farmland is being purchased by weekenders from the cities. If my livestock ever gets out of my fences, there isn't a fenced farm within miles. Before I redid my perimeter fence, and later most of my interior fencing, a herd of beef cows got out overnight. I tracked them and found them 10 miles away! The Amish train their stock to being tied by one leg and put them out to graze the roadway. But most livestock isn't trained to be put out that way.

2 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

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