soursobs eradication

by gordon

I should love to know how to eradicate soursobs from my raised veggie beds.

Comments for soursobs eradication

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Jul 26, 2011
by: Kiwi George

Yep, been there done that and it took me 5 years but got the b@#$%^d's one trowel full at a time. My raised no dig organic beds are looking gr8 without the "pretty yellow flowers", Yeah right. I did that way as I have compromised heart lungs and kidneys so I keep well away from any toxic sprays.
Good luck
Kiwi George

Aug 27, 2011
Soursobs, oxalis and wood sorrel eradication
by: ~ Megan

Wouldn't we all! Join the club... the Soursob Defeat Club!

Personally I think they are one of the prettiest weeds around, and you can eat them too. Good for garnish, bulbs, leaves and flowers, with a tangy bite (that's where their name comes from). Don't eat handfuls every day because they are high in oxalic acid — and in fact we call it Oxalis here in NZ.

There are more than 9000 species of the Wood Sorrell family, often called oxalis, soursobs, sourgrass and just sorrel. Some of them have long underground roots, all have bulbs and many of them have viable seeds.

So how to eradicate soursobs/oxalis? How many mathematicians/gardeners does it take to explain that it is impossible.... etc.

But try these:
1. Dig out soil and replace. Cons: If your neighbours have soursobs you will get seeds from them.

2. In winter or spring when the ground is friable and the plants haven't flowered, you will find them easier to dig or pull up whole plants intact, with no little bulblets falling off. Cons: There are often many bulbs lying in wait deeper down, and/or long roots with bulbs attached that have broken off.

3. Cover raised soil with at least half dozen paper sheets or cardboard, then mulch. Carefully plant your veg seedlings by poking holes through these layers, and just as carefully digging down and getting out all and any soursobs that poke up next to your seedlings. Cons: You will need to do this 2-3 years to kill all the blighters in your soil... and hey ho, over the fence more seeds may blow.

4. Use a flame thrower or steamer, pour boiling water, or vinegar, or sprinkle salt, or old engine oil onto soursob leaves, and keep doing it which will eventually kill them. Cons: You will kill just about everything beneficial in your garden including worms.

Fun eh? Realistically, your best bet which works for me, and other weed weary gardeners, is for YOU to CLAIM CONTROL. In other words, take back you garden and be in charge by NOT letting soursobs/oxalis/sorrel over ride your other plants.

You do this by a mixture of some or all the above 4 points, such as: Dig out as many as often as you have a spare half hour; cover and mulch any particularly infested patches; kill the stubborn odd plant, particularly those between paving stones etc with anything from No.4 above

Finally, it makes sense that these weeds, like all weeds are opportunistic. They set up home in bare soil, poor soil and unbalanced soil. Keep you garden healthy, fill it with the plants you like, feed and mulch, and hopefully those sweet little soursob ratbags will be overpowered and eventually retreat to the edges and wither from your life.

Aug 11, 2013
Soursobs gone
by: BarbM

Why bother with chemical killers, they only add to the already burgeoning pockets of those poisoning the soil.

To kill them, feed them, often and overkill with the the fertiliser. Might take 2 - 3 years but a far safer way. It screws up their normal growing pattern and breed like crazy, then die out just as quick.

Oct 02, 2017
by: Anonymous

I have been told by an older gentleman that if you fertilize them heavily with NPK as they emerge it makes the little bulbs burst , so when you pull up the plant or spray it, there are no viable bulbs left in the ground.

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