Forum home Problem solving

Eradicating Horsetail Grass



  • @Autumn dh: Thanks for the tips! Mine has just started to reappear in earnest again since the weather improved! I've been pulling out the 'asparagus' looking tips, which will hopefully reduce the number I get next season. Luckily I don't have a lawn, my garden is basically one large pond, surrounded by gravel, with a couple of borders that contain shrubs. As my soil (clay) is terrible, I grow almost everything in pots, where the horsetail grass can't establish itself. However, the horsetail grass is now starting to come up in the margins of my pond, and has me worrying about the liner, which is a good few years old! It is basically impossible to 'improve' the soil structure without some major remodelling which would incur a large expense, and it won't necessarily work if the neighbours also have an infestation! I think I'm stuck with pulling it out when I see it, and trying to plant shrubs that can out compete it! Good luck with your situation! image

  • Autumn dhAutumn dh Posts: 51

    Man that sounds tough. We just moved in here last June and when we moved it, was clear we had a huge problem We had more horsetail than lanwn.After digging up the lawn, I found the soil was mostly clay. So there's the "root" of the problem. I don't know how to fix it other than liming, and adding manure and compost under a new turf. Our neighbours have totally paved over their lawns (maybe the understood the futility of this). I'm originally from Oregon however and paving depresses me. I need my green! Luckily I am a housewife so I'll go out there when it is not raining and pull it out when I can. The magpies were out there helping me out and using the little roots for their nest. I've planted some pumpkins and sunflowers in the sunny spot that is not covered by gravel, and I'll see if that helps.

  • I'd appreciate hearing from anyone in Oregon with excess horsetail (equisetum spp.) that has not been herbicided.  I'm interested in bulk quantities of fresh and older top growth for experiments in soil regeneration.  Thanks!  @bRegenerative  image

  • I have a similar problem at my new allotment. I put down weed control fabric where my brassicas are and it lifted it up 15"!!

    After lots of research on professional landscape/horticulture forums the general consensus for eradication is a product called Kurtail,, but at £30+ a pop it bloody should be!!

    There are a few videos on youtube showing the results and I will be clearing my plot early this year to let the offender run wild before applying.

    So watch this place for the results and I may even post some pictures of before and after.

  • @Billy Goat - That looks like a promising product, if a little on the pricey side!

    None of the weed killers I've used have been successful! The best ones have managed to kill off the visible horsetail, but none have touched the roots, and the grass is usually back within a couple of weeks!

    I look forward to seeing your results, and if it really does eradicate the stuff, £30 is a very small price to pay!

  • Took me three years to get this ancient weed under control on my allotment.  I' m a puller outer. See it, fork out, lift as much out as possible and pull. Diligent removal while winter digging. Plenty of manure at the end of the growing season to improve the fertility of the soil (lucky to have manure delivered to the site). left with some stragglers under the paving slabs, but they where manageable. It does work. 


  • i used a weedkiller called Kurtail ,last year and very rarely see horsetail now .it was recommended to me by a farmer as one can plant after spraying.

  • We had tons of this on our acidic site. We covered it over with carpets for 2 years ( which got walked on). It was just as bad if not worse. My neighbor said " It's been loving the conditions you gave it, it's a prehistoric plant and likes nothing better than dark damp impacted soil." So we opened it up and tried to increase the fertility. Interestingly there is very little in our fertile, organic, no- digging deep beds, but I've given up on the rest of the garden - it's in the "lawn", the flower beds and my pond.

    I dig it out of the flower beds and imagine that if I make them more fertile and free draining like the deep beds things will improve. Pond- wise? learn to love it? ( hard) or maybe I will just put butyl liner over it and cover it with rocks!!!

  • Steve 309Steve 309 Posts: 2,753

    ...and concreting it over doesn't help either - it can grow through at least 6" of the stuff.

    Isn't nature wonderful?

  • Frank39Frank39 Posts: 2

    I had a large flower bed at the front of my house overrun with horse tail, after years of weed killers ,hand weeding and digging l gave up. I dug the bed out placed a membrane and Stoned it over . The next year I had a load of stones overrun with horse tail. I lifted the stones laid 2 layers of builders waterproof damp proof plastic and restoned. I was lucky the site had a bit of a fall so I dug a sump hole at the lowest point as there was no drainage with this material. Success this year no horse tail 

Sign In or Register to comment.