The heatwave has brought the ragwort into flower early. There isn’t a lot of it, but it’s blooming beautifully; threatened by drought, it will seed rapidly and each plant can produce as many as 150,000 seeds. So….. it’s time for all those who complained about the spraying in the spring to turn out to pull ragwort.
It’s confined to the hedges and edges our farmer left out of the spraying, and the rough areas of set-aside. FoSCP’s Wednesday work party pulled out and disposed of half a dozen bagfuls and there isn’t really enough left for an organised Ragwort Party. Can we ask you to go it alone?
All you need is gloves and a bin bag: the gloves because ragwort contains chemicals that can cause an allergic reaction, a bin bag to put the ragwort in because left lying on the ground it can still make seed. This is what you are looking for:
Grab the ragwort low down, where the stem is thick and woody, and pull the whole thing out of the ground. Leave the bin bags next to a rubbish bin on the main path or in the car park and we can arrange for them to be taken away.
If you are lucky enough to find ragwort hosting striped caterpillars, leave that plant and a couple of its neighbours for the caterpillars to move into when they have eaten the first one. These are the larval stage of cinnabar moths.
Out you come, Ragbaggers; we know where you live.. . . .