Why are we doing this …?

I have a feeling that the reasons for the treatment of Japanese knotweed have somehow been forgotten over the last few years.

Treatment specialist firms are not ‘environmentally’ qualified and have no background in landscape or horticulture and are in fact more likely to be salesmen from the car industry, damp proofing contractors or double-glazing salesmen.

Everybody has jumped on the old ‘bandwagon’ and call themselves experts when the reality is, they are nothing more than gold diggers trying to make a few quid.

Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not naive, I know how the world works…. but I am just getting a bit jaded as to how these people get away with what they do.

Their only skill set appears to be sales – and they have ZERO concern for the environment.

My website gets copied, my company name gets copied, my ‘tag lines’ get copied, my name gets used by other companies as a search engine tool and nobody seems to notice. I’ve given up suing people as it’s a waste of money. It doesn’t change anything and one small victory in one week is soon overshadowed by somebody copying something else the following week.

This I could cope with – but what really gets me riled is knowing that these types of contractors are causing environmental damage simply because they have no concern for anything other than killing one particular plant. Yes, they know what knotweed looks like, and yes some of them know how to kill it. What they never seem to get though is that Japanese knotweed is simply one element of a changing landscape that is far more complex than just getting one intruder.

Why is the knotweed there? Where has it come from? What plants have been pushed out to allow it to thrive? What other species are nearby? What will replace the knotweed after it has been eradicated…?

All of these questions should be answered by your knotweed ‘specialist’ …yet 90% of them wouldn’t have a clue.

My whole ‘raison d’etre’ when I first started dealing with invasive species was ‘to improve the environment’…

I was a keen fisherman and felt that the rivers which I knew and loved were being overrun by plants which simply shouldn’t be there. I wanted to restore the balance of a natural environment with native species and benefit the wildlife and the indigenous plants were being pushed out.

I am 100% convinced that if you asked many of these so-called ‘specialists’ in the field of invasive weed management why they were doing their job… their response would be something along the lines of … ‘I was looking for a new opportunity as I felt I’d gone as far as I could with selling Skodas’…

Maybe ask a few more questions of your chosen contractor rather than just looking at lowest price?

It will pay you dividends in the longer term.

Mike C


0161 723 2000