Japanese Knotweed, a very problematic weed, could be part of your landscape right now. While there is certainly no need to panic, there is reason to take action. In order to do that, you must first be able to identify this pesky weed. This can be a little difficult at times, as you will see, but there are professionals that can help with the Japanese Knotweed identification process.
It is also important to know the consequences of allowing Japanese Knotweed to continue to infest your landscape. These bright leafy green weeds with white or yellowish tinted clusters of flowers during the summertime might look harmless, but that’s not the case. They aren’t your average weed. In fact, the rhizome root system can cause all kinds of damage to sidewalks, pavement and even your home’s foundation.
How can a weed’s root system be such a detrimental force? The rhizome root system is thick and woody, and that’s just the beginning. The roots are very hearty if left to grow year after year, and they even take on the likeness of a tree trunk with rings on the inside. In fact, if left to grow and reproduce new weeds each year, the root systems for Japanese Knotweed can stretch up to seven meters wide and up to three feet deep.
That’s quite an extensive root system for a weed. Now you see how these thick and hearty roots can cause so many problems. You might think that you’re just staring at a harmless weed infesting your yard, and that’s bad enough. However, the real damage occurs underground, and you certainly don’t want a root system like that messing with the foundation of your home.
Japanese Knotweed identification is best performed by a professional and according to the root system. However, there are different identification methods, and they start with the leaves. You have to keep in mind that this weed changes seasonally, and it also can cross breed with other weeds. Additionally, there are other Knotweed species as well.
The Japanese Knotweed leaves can grow up to 120 mm, and that is one way you can tell Japanese Knotweed from other Knotweed species. Other species of Knotweed can have leaves that grow up to 400 mm long. If you want to try to identify whether or not you have the problematic Japanese Knotweed growing in your yard, you can take a picture to send to a professional, compare online photos with what you see in person or simply have the experts pay you a visit.
The important thing is to realize that this isn’t some weed that appears to die off during the winter, only being a seasonal nuisance. The root system continues to manifest year after year, producing even more of the weed and causing the underground problems mentioned earlier. The longer you wait to identify this weed and eradicate the problem, the more burdensome it can become. Check those leaves to see if Japanese Knotweed is a part of your landscape and then take action.