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Thread: Flame Guns

  1. #1
    Looloobowers's Avatar
    Looloobowers is offline Seedling
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    Default Flame Guns

    Hi,

    Has anyone tried this method of weed killing? Some have told me it is great and kills perennial weeds and others have said yes it's good but you must do it in the non-growing season to avoid killing the insects. Can anyone help? We have been digging and taking out the roots (couch grass I think) and this is fine where the ground has been dug before. But the previous owner of this allotment only did so we have a lot to do. I know there is no real quick fix but I am just looking for a way to clear quickly in time for the seed potatoes to go in.

    Looloo

  2. #2
    dragonz's Avatar
    dragonz is offline Sprouter
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    The one we got was pants, but fun. It blackened the weeds a bit but they where back within a month

  3. #3
    Lesley Jay is offline Early Fruiter
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    If it is couch grass you will need to take the roots out because the roots can spear the potatoes and grow straight through them.
    [

  4. #4
    WiZeR is offline Tuber
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    I considered it, but it apeared to me that you would still need to dig the ground and so what would be the point?

  5. #5
    Melbourne12 is offline Germinator
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    Flame guns are great! Real boyz toyz.

    Seriously, I think they're very effective. But as with all things there are pros and cons. We have the standard Sheen flame gun. It's quite a fiddle to prime and light it, so you're not going to get it out for the sake of a couple of dandelions. And flame guns aren't very effective on mature grass, so couch is resistant.

    On the plus side, flaming is organic (in spite of the use of fossil fuel ). It can be used to kill emerging weeds immediately prior to planting, so the young plants get a good start on clean ground. If you're confident, you can plant seeds, and calculate when they are going to emerge, and flame a couple of days beforehand for the same effect.

    You can weed between rows. It's brilliant around fruit bushes, or around shallow rooted plants where you don't want to hoe too vigorously. And of course it's a boon around raised beds, so that your paths are kept weed-free.

    Try it on bindweed that's growing up a wire fence. Hey presto!

    If anyone reading this is thinking of trying one (and you can hire them to get a feel for the thing), you shouldn't actually burn the weeds. Flaming works by destroying the cell structure in the leaves. Just pass the flame over the weeds, lingering just long enough for the leaves to heat up and "cook". They're done when, if you press them, you leave a thumb print on the leaf. That shows that the cells have been destroyed. If you give the weeds the full monty and actually scorch or burn them, many plants will shoot again with renewed vigour!

  6. #6
    nick the grief's Avatar
    nick the grief is offline Gardening Guru
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    Spot on Melbourrne,

    Some toughies may need more than one going over to see them off. Also you can use it to steralise some soil to make you compost.

    Spread it out on some concrete go over it with the gun and it should kill the bugs & weed seeds, then bag it up.

  7. #7
    dragonz's Avatar
    dragonz is offline Sprouter
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    Quote Originally Posted by Melbourne12
    If you give the weeds the full monty and actually scorch or burn them, many plants will shoot again with renewed vigour!
    so thats what I did wrong

  8. #8
    sewer rat's Avatar
    sewer rat is offline Early Fruiter
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    Default Flame Guns

    Dragonz
    I can guarantee that you are not the only one to burn the weeds off only for them to reappear.
    I think we all expect immediate results from burning - obviously we are all being far too impatient. Thanks to Melbourne12 for putting us right
    Rat

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