Japanese Knotweed: The Ultimate Guide

Japanese Knotweed: The Ultimate Guide

September, 2019

Hearing the words ‘Japanese Knotweed’ can fill you with dread, from the costs to remove it to the potential damage it can cause. It’s a weed with very deep roots than can spread rapidly and is incredibly hard to remove in the same way you would any other weeds. It costs the UK economy £166 million a year to treat and in home evaluations.

So how did it end up in the UK? It was brought to the country in the mid-19th century for its beauty and potential to be animal feed. Its home in the Japanese volcanos meant that it would stay relatively small, so no one anticipated the mammoth size it could grow in the UK. In this day and age, this weed has now become a problem for many homeowners.

There are a few myths about the weed. Some say that it can grow through your floors, however this is not entirely true. It would be unlikely to find it growing through your foundations, however it can grow in through the cracks of your house at the sides. Untreated knotweed growing in or around your house can cause a lot of damage, so it’s important to treat it – the right way.

This weed isn’t illegal to have on your land, even though you might have been told it is. However, if it spreads from your property into someone else’s, they have the right to push legal action. Also, when selling your home, you could face legal action if you don’t disclose that there is or has been Japanese Knotweed on your land. Therefore, it’s important to treat it as soon as possible.

Removing Japanese Knotweed yourself is not a risk worth taking. It won’t be treated with your standard weed killer and digging it out is incredibly difficult, due to the growing power of the roots. It can regrow from a tiny piece of the root being left in the ground, so unless you can ensure you’ve removed every last part then you’ll have done a lot of work for little reward. Disposing of it is also difficult, as it has to be disposed of in specific landfill sites.

The best way to remove Japanese Knotweed is with a professional. They will have more powerful weed killers and better tools to tackle the infestation. Also, a professional will often give you a guarantee that means if it does come back, you can call on them again to fix it.