Himalayan Balsam Season is Here Again!

The image below is of Fox Hollow at the northern end of Hoo Wood. It looks beautifully green, but the wood floor is carpeted with 400mm high invasive Himalayan balsam; it will eventually grow to a height of around two metres.

The marsh cattle have been on Himalayan balsam eating duty for a while now, and they are chomping away in the Riverside Pasture as I write this post. We will move them from field to field throughout the growing season.

File 11-05-2016 9 15 21 am

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4 Responses to Himalayan Balsam Season is Here Again!

  1. ramblingratz says:

    Presumably the cattle chomping is a temporary solution, it will keep growing back? And is that the delightful Spike I spot on the left?

    Liked by 1 person

    • The cattle will solve the Himalayan balsam problem on the marsh; to survive, it must shed its seeds annually.
      Unfortunately, the cattle are not able graze Hoo Wood at the moment: too many holes in the fencing.
      That is Spike. I don’t allow dogs on the marsh, but Spike and other dogs are allowed in Hoo Wood.
      The Himalayan balsam problem in Hoo and Dark Woods is something I am trying to solve. Dark Wood is a particular worry, because it is the last piece of waterlogged woodland (Carr) on Stour Hill, and the balsam growing there must be dealt with. Hopefully, I will find a solution within the next two years.
      Fortunately, the fencing around Dark Wood’s is repairable, so grazing is an excellent option. I plan to speak to the owner of the wood and the Environment Agency shortly.

      Amazingly, the Environment Agency offices are situated 150 metres from Dark Wood.


  2. Lovely photo, Mike. And you’re right – your Hoo Wood does look very much like my Moss Valley wood.

    Liked by 1 person

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