How to Kill & Prevent Ragwort


Stop Ragwort from Growing and Spreading

Welcome! If you're looking for tips on how to permanently get rid of Ragwort in your garden, then you've come to the right place. Ragwort is a common weed and many gardeners find themselves in a battle trying to control it. This guide will provide all the information you need to know to identify and kill Ragwort naturally and forever.

Ragwort is a perennial weed which has yellow composite flowers and grows in a variety of soils and habitats. It prefers sunny and dry conditions, and typically grows in fields, pastures, on roadsides, and in gardens.

It can spread quickly, and is capable of taking over a large area in a short period of time. Ragwort is toxic to horses and other livestock, which makes it an even bigger problem for gardeners.

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How to Identify Ragwort

When identifying Ragwort, look for a weed with a long, straight stem, with yellow flowers. The leaves are bright green, and grow on opposite sides of the stem.

They are slightly toothed on the margins, and the flowers will have five petals. The plant can grow up to 1.5 metres tall, and has a strong smell.

Once you've identified Ragwort, the best way to get rid of it is to pull it up by hand. Make sure to get the entire root, as the Ragwort will quickly regrow if it is still in the ground.

If you have a large infestation, you can use a chemical herbicide to kill the weed. Be sure to follow instructions carefully to ensure it is used safely and effectively.

Now you know how to identify and kill Ragwort, you can start your battle against the weed and ensure your garden remains Ragwort free!

Why should I control Ragwort?

Ragwort is an invasive plant species that can cause significant damage to the environment and to people’s health. It can affect the quality of grazing land and contaminate forage for livestock, leading to decreased productivity and health problems for animals.

In addition, it can also be toxic to humans if it is ingested.

Controlling ragwort can help prevent the spread of its toxic alkaloids into the environment. These alkaloids can contaminate water sources and accumulate in the soil, posing a risk to both humans and animals.

Controlling ragwort can also help reduce the risk of human contact with the plant, which can cause skin irritation and other health problems.

What are the health risks of Ragwort?

The health risks of Ragwort are grave, and one of the most serious weeds to be found in the UK. Ragwort is a biennial plant, which means it can spread quickly and produce large amounts of seeds.

Its leaves and flowers contain toxic alkaloids, which can cause liver damage and severe illness if consumed by animals. The most common cause of poisoning is when livestock consume the plant, as the toxins can damage their organs, causing permanent damage or even death.

Horses are particularly susceptible, as they often graze on Ragwort, and can suffer from chronic liver and neurological damage if exposed for too long. Even if eaten in small amounts, Ragwort can cause anemia, reduced appetite, jaundice, and ultimately, death.

How can I kill Ragwort naturally?

Killing Ragwort can be a tricky business, especially if you are looking to do it naturally.

Fortunately, there are a few methods that can be used to help eradicate this pesky weed.

One of the best ways to kill Ragwort naturally is to use a method called mowing. Mowing involves cutting the weed down to ground level with a lawn mower.

This method can be effective, but it usually requires multiple mowings throughout the season and is best done when the plant is in the flowering stage.

Finally, another natural way to kill Ragwort is to use a flame weeder.

A flame weeder is a device that uses propane to produce a flame which is used to burn the weed. This method is effective, but can also be dangerous if not used properly.

No matter which method you choose, it is important to ensure that the Ragwort is completely dead before reseeding or planting in the area. This will help to ensure that the Ragwort does not return.

What weed killer should I use to kill Ragwort?

When it comes to killing Ragwort, you need to select a strong weed killer that is best suited to the environment in which the weed is growing. A good option to consider is a glyphosate-based herbicide, as it has proven effective in controlling Ragwort in most cases. Be sure to read the label carefully before use to ensure that it is suitable for the environment where you plan to use it.

Please note: Glyphosate will kill grass & all plant life, so be sure to apply it only to the Ragwort.

In addition to selecting an appropriate weed killer, it is important to take action to prevent Ragwort from returning. This can be done through regular mowing and cultivation of the area where the weed is growing.

Taking the time to remove any seed heads and roots will also help prevent the weed from spreading. Additionally, using mulch or weed-barrier fabric can help to prevent the weed from re-seeding and spreading to other areas.

With these preventative measures, you'll be well on your way to Ragwort-free land.

Picture by Jeff Morris 24/7/03 Pix shows workmen of the Greater M/cr Highways collect the dangerous "Ragwort" from the areas motorway & Trunk rd verges

How do I manually remove Ragwort

Manual removal of Ragwort is the most effective way to get rid of the weed in your garden. Before you start, it’s important to wear protective clothing, such as gloves and a long-sleeved shirt, as Ragwort can cause skin irritation.

Once you’re ready, start by cutting the plant off at the base using a pair of garden shears or a spade. Make sure you collect all the cuttings in a bag, as the roots can still spread the weed even after it has been cut.

If you’re dealing with a large clump of Ragwort, you can use a shovel to dig out the roots. Make sure you dispose of the bag in the trash, and don’t add it to your compost pile.

How can I prevent Ragwort from growing

Preventing Ragwort from growing in your garden is an important step in keeping your garden healthy. The best way to do this is to start by eliminating any existing Ragwort that may be present. Make sure to dig out any roots, as they can re-sprout and spread if left in the soil.

You can also use a herbicide designed to kill Ragwort, but you should always read the instructions carefully and follow them exactly. Once you’ve gotten rid of any existing Ragwort, you can use a few preventative measures to help ensure it doesn’t come back.

First, keep your garden well-maintained. Make sure to pull any weeds that may be growing, and keep the grass mowed. You should also consider planting a ground cover such as grass or clover, which can help prevent the spread of Ragwort. 

Additionally, you can use barriers such as mulch or gravel to create a physical barrier between your garden and any areas where Ragwort may be growing. 

About the author 


Hey there, I am founder and editor in chief here at Good Grow. I guess I've always known I was going to be a gardener. I'm on a mission to share my UK based weed control & lawn care tips with you all. If you have any queries please post in the comments below.

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