Herbicides are the most popular way to control weeds, especially in commercial farms, industrial areas, roadways, and large-scale landscapes. Trees and weed killers don’t mix well. Unintentional consequences of herbicide use can sometimes be tragic.
Sources of tree herbicide injury
Although the target of herbicides is usually taken care of, it is possible for accidental herbicide injury to trees or other plants. It is challenging to diagnose tree herbicide injury because it mimics disease and insect damage.
The incorrect or accidental application of herbicides to trees may result in damage. Tree roots may absorb herbicides from nearby treatments into their vascular system.
Many soil sterilants can be applied to graveled areas like driveways and fencelines. Trees that live near these areas can absorb herbicides, leading to herbicide injury. This injury can sometimes not occur for many years because some chemicals may remain in the soil. As tree roots grow, however, they may contact the chemical.
Treating trees that have been affected by the weed killer
It is challenging to treat trees that have been sprayed with weed killer. Because there are so many different types of herbicide, each containing other chemicals, it can be challenging to treat trees affected by the weed killer. Treatment may not be as cost-effective as chemical analysis.
Herbicide injury can be seen in distorted leaves, stunted growth, and necrosis.
If the injury is caused by drift on leaves and is found immediately, you can spray the tree liberally with water to lessen its effects.
Apply no water to soil containing herbicide. Remove contaminated soil if possible. The type of herbicide used will determine the treatment required. It is usually unnecessary to do anything if it is a preemergent type. You can mix the soil with activated carbon or organic matter if it is a soil-sterilant that is quickly taken up by roots. This will absorb the herbicide.
For more information, don’t hesitate to contact the manufacturer. A certified arborist may also be helpful. It is essential to identify the type of weed killer used to treat trees.