Rail Weeds London compressor

The importance of weed control management

Weed control methods are vital to the survival of native plants and the safety of physical infrastructures.

As weeds compete for light, nutrients and moisture, they can grow at an accelerated rate and take over as the primary plant species. In doing so, they can eradicate native plants in a single growing season, which can be extremely harmful to the ecosystem.

When weeds grow alongside physical infrastructures, they can become a health and safety hazard. From road-sides where they can block the visibility of drivers to pipe tracks where they can cause a critical leak, weeds can quickly become a problem in peoples’ everyday lives.

There are a variety of weeds, from harmless common garden weeds to the more dangerous plants that are toxic to humans/animals or public spaces. Some can be harmful to humans from causing rashes to severe blisters when touched like the stinging nettle or poison ivy. They can also be threatening in other ways:  invasive weeds can become dangerous as they outgrow other plants killing them in the process, some can cause property damage as they grow at such a pace it becomes impossible to control and many are poisonous to animals.

The different weed control methods

There are a number of weed control methods that can be used to prevent the growth of weeds:

Organic mulch

Most commonly a form of chipped bark, organic mulch is one the most environmentally friendly methods of weed control management. When applied in a 2–3-inch layer, organic mulch helps to block the sunlight that weeds need to grow. Not only does mulch prevent weeds, it also benefits the soil by retaining moisture and releasing nutrients.

Organic mulch is a relatively short-term method of preventative weed control and will need to be reapplied at least once a year.

Geotextile Membranes

The majority of high-quality geotextiles are made from a synthetic-fibre material. When applied, geotextiles work by blocking the sunlight and preventing the growth of weeds. Whilst many fabrics are UV-protected, it is advised that they are not directly exposed to sunlight. Instead, geotextiles can be covered with a layer of mulch, providing additional weed prevention. Geotextiles will require regular monitoring to ensure it maintains its strength and quality.

Herbicides

Herbicides are a popular method of weed control for roadsides, and are currently used by local councils across the UK. Selective herbicides help to target and remove invasive species, without impacting the surrounding vegetation. These are considered the most environmentally-friendly form of herbicide, as the removal of invasive species is vital to protecting our established ecosystems.

Herbicides provide short-term weed control and need to be applied twice a year for effective weed control management.

Concrete Canvas

Concrete Canvas is a growing application for weed control management, at land development projects and limited access sites. Complying with ASTM standards, Concrete Canvas has been certified by the British Board of Agrement (BBA) for its weed suppression applications. By forming a fibre reinforced concrete layer, Concrete Canvas prevents weed growth, soil erosion and water pollution. Concrete Canvas has been tested against weed suppression and root penetration resistance according to DD CEN/TS 14416:2005, meaning weeds will not break through the material. It’s available in man-portable batched rolls, which allows for easy transportation to limited access sites and where application is required near a road or railway. Not only will CC prevent weed growth but it prevents corrosion of pipework and clear leak detection visibility.

Concrete Canvas is a long-term preventative weed control method, with a minimum design life of 50 years. Typically ten-times faster to install than conventional solutions and it allows for installation with minimal plant specialist training. One single layer of CC5 material would replace 100mm of poured concrete, saving on material and cost. With the product being a long-term solution, this would save vast amounts of money on maintenance and continuous labour costs.

Use Concrete Canvas for Weed Control Management

If you’re looking for a weed control method that is durable, flexible and environmentally-friendly, look no further than Concrete Canvas. Concrete Canvas has been used across a number of industries, including Road, Rail and Utilities for its weed control management.

To find out more about Concrete Canvas and how it can be used for weed prevention, get in touch.