***** indicates the most important case studies - click links to read reports

T = Trials
R = Recorded
D = Demonstration / Exhibition

Reference: T00 *****


Problem: Spear Thistle in pasture
Where: Hill Top Farm, Spaunton, North Yorkshire
When: February, March 2002
Status: Organic
Area: 4.65 hectares(11.50 acres)
Detail: Trial, during which we removed 8016 rosettes in 18.23 man-hours. (After F & M restrictions)

Reference: R00 *****


Problem: Spear thistle, Docks, Creeping thistle, Ragwort, Bracken, in Permanent & Temporary grass or crops
Where: Hill Top Farm, Spaunton, North Yorkshire
When: 1975 to 2004
Status: Organic
Area: Various
Detail: Our control of weeds is available for inspection at Hill Top Farm

Reference: R01 *****


Problem: Ragwort in pasture
Where: Kent / Port Lympne
When: 26th June - July 12th 2001
Status: SSSI
Area: 48.58 hectares (120 acres)
Detail: South sloping, rough and uneven terrain. Deer pasture
Removed all potential flowering plants. 416 Man-hours

Reference: R02 **

Problem: Creeping Thistle & Hemlock in pasture
Where: Winchcombe, Glos.
When: 26th July- 29th July: 2001 (122 man-hours.)
Status: Organic
Area: Unrecorded
Detail: Level pasture infested with Hemlock. Creeping Thistle on rough banks.
Removal of Hemlock (Lazy Dog) Removal of thistle (Chisel Hoes & Strimmers)

Reference: R03 *****

Problem. Ragwort in pasture
Where: Dorset. Church Farm, Rhyme Intrinseca, Sherborne
When: July 29th Aug 15th. 2001 (425 man-hours)
Status: Conventional. (Horse gallops & cattle pasture, Countryside Stewardship)
Area: 20.24 Hectares (50 acres). Flat tops & sloping fields
Detail: High level infestation / min. 3 plants to 1sq. metre / remove & burn.

Reference: R04 ***

Problem: Spear thistle in new seeds
Where: Borders, Hawick
When: August 1st - 7th 2002. (147 man-hours)
Status: Organic
Area: 10.12 Hectares (25 acres)
Detail: Remove rosettes. 4 to 1 sq. metre

Reference: R05 ***

Problem: Docks in permanent pasture
Where: Bath, Wilts
When: October 2002 (1 week / 140 man-hours)
Status: Organic.
Area: 20.24 Hectares (50 acres)
Detail: Docks removed from worst areas / feeding places. Close grazing policy made this difficult. Small plants / multiple roots. Grazed by horses & cattle

Reference: R06 ***

Problem: Docks in new seeds
Where: Cheddar / Somerset
When: October 2001 (96 man-hours)
Land classification: Organic
Area: 1.82 hectares (4.5 Acres)
Detail: Long grass. Clay. Easy extraction. Serious numbers of mature plants.

Reference: R07 *****

Problem: Ragwort in deer pasture
Where: Port Lympne, Hyde, Kent
When: October/November 2002
Status: SSSI
Area: 48.58 hectares (120 acres)
Detail: Follow-up rosette removal (105 Man-hours)
Report: (see also R.06)

Reference: R08 **

Problem: Creeping thistle / Docks/ Spear thistle/ Bracken
Where: Hill Top Farm, Yorkshire
When: February / June/ October 2002 (240 man-hours)
Status: Organic
Area: app. 26.7 hectares (66 acres) Detail: Maintenance & follow-up

Reference: D08A *

Problem: Weeds in Horticulture
Where: Conference at Research Centre, Selby, North Yorkshire
When: June 2002
Detail: Attend, Show tools and Displays
Report: none

Reference: T009 *****

Problem: Old docks in parkland / limestone-brash
Where: Stanton Park, Wiltshire
When: December 17th - 21st 2002
Status: Countryside stewardship / Community Forest Project
Area: 5.66 hectares (14 acres)
Detail: Demonstration Clearance / Swindon Borough Council. (160 man-hours)

Reference: D010 *

Problem: Docks & Spear Thistle in pasture
Where: Co. Durham.
When February 21st 2003
Status: Organic
Area: Unrecorded
Detail: Demonstration to Group of Farmers, organized by Northumberland & Durham Machinery Ring

Reference: R011 ***

Problem: Docks in permanent pasture
Where: Low Holm Farm, Carlisle
When: February 18th 2003 (120 man-hours)
Status: Organic
Area: Unrecorded. (approx 2.42 hectares)
Detail: Cold, wet-snowy conditions. Sandy/clay mix soil
Small plants, clustered, originally spread in slurry by muck-spreader, difficult to remove

Reference: T012 *****

Problem: Spear thistle, Docks, Ragwort in newly seeded wildflower meadow
Where: High Farm, Menethorpe, N. Yorkshire
When: March 2003 (32 man-hours)
Status: Countryside Stewardship
Area: 5.66 hectares (14 acres)
Detail: Costs just £12 per acre

Reference: T013 ***

Problem: Ragwort infested pastures & grazed bank-sides
Where: Brownmoors Farm, Thixendale, North Yorkshire
When: March 2003
Status: Organic
Area: approx. 20.24 hectares (50 acres)
Detail: Visible small rosettes pulled as a demonstration. 28 man-hours
More-or-less permanent grazing from cattle & horses. Advise using more handwork & only cull ewes for grazing (see report)

Reference: D014 ***

Problem: Ragwort in parkland grazed by deer
Where: Knowle Park, Kent
When: May 2003
Status: SSSI / Countryside Stewardship
Area: App. 160 hectares
Detail: Inspection only. Some areas contain over 200 Ragwort plants per 25 sq. metres Many seedlings appearing on turf covered anthills. Site overgrazed by deer. 50 acres around house are pulled annually by the National Trust volunteers. This has worked.

Reference D014A

Problem: All weeds
Where & When: Totnes. South Devon Farmers Cooperative. May 2003
A demonstration / field exhibition of weed control techniques, organized by the Soil Association. Talk to farmers and show the tools at work in the field.

Reference: T015 *****

Problem: Inspection of Site-work
Where: South West. The winter work for Swindon was looking extremely effective, with officers surprised at the dock control. Other clients were also pleased with effect of the Autumn 2001 work, which will now require annual maintenance (as opposed to massive clearances).
When: May 2003
Reports: See R.05 to T.09.

Reference: R016 ****

Problem: Creeping thistle in previously rotavated land
Where: Audley End Kitchen Garden
When: Late May 2003 (40 man-hours)
Status: Organic
Area: approx. 0.60 hectares (1.5 acres)
Detail. 2 man workforce chiseling & raking. Phenomenal growth from chopped sections. Docks also removed from flower & vegetable borders


Reference: R017 *

Problem: Spear thistle in permanent pasture
Where: Low Holm Farm, Cumbria
When: June 2003
Status: Organic
Area: 20 / 30 acres
Detail: 120 man-hours

Reference: T018 *****

Problem: Spear thistle & Dock in Red Clover (grown for seed). Ragwort, Spear Thistle & Docks, in permanent pasture
Where: ADAS High Mowthorpe, North Yorkshire
When: April 2003
Status: Organic
Area: 12.55 Hectares Seeds / 16.19 Hectares PP. (31 Acres / 40 acres)
Detail: 4 / 5 man workforce

Reference: T019 *****

Problem: Creeping Thistle on permanent pastures
Where: Dog Tree Bank Farm, Goathland, North Yorkshire
When: May 2003
Status: Countryside Stewardship
Area: 4.04 Hectares (10 acres)
Detail: Serious infestation / permanent grazing / poorly drained. (4 men, 1 week)

Reference: D020 *

Problem: Docks & Spear thistle in pastureland
Where: Shropshire
When: May 8th 2003
Status: Organic
Area: not recorded
Detail: Demonstration & Talk to Farming Group, organized by Saskat Machinery Ring
Report: (see also pages on promotion of fieldwork, in report)

Reference: R021 ***

Problem: Docks invading old wildflower meadows (lightly grazed / cattle)
Where: Howsham Farm, N. Yorkshire
When: June 2004
Status: Countryside Stewardship
Area: 2.83 Hectares (7 acres)
Detail: Long grass / 58 species of wildflower. (80 man-hours, 4 men 2.5 days)
Report :

Reference: D022 *

Problem: Docks in Wheat and Pasture
Where: Cheshire
When: July 03
Status: Organic
Area: Not recorded
Detail: Demonstrate removing Docks to farmer & his workforce

Reference: D023 ***

Problem: Docks in Triticale & pasture
Where: Shropshire
When: July 03
Status: Organic
Area: 16.19 Hectares (40 acres)
Detail: Wet / Clay Conditions / Imported workforce

Reference: D023 (B) ***

Problem: Spear & Creeping thistle in sheep pasture
Where: Askrigg, North Yorkshire
When: July 2003
Area: 25 acres
Status: Countryside Stewardship
Detail: Set up a small trial plot 2 weeks before an English Nature Farmers Group meeting. Attend, show tools & demonstrate (alongside weed-wiper)

Reference: R023 ***

Problem: Spear & Marsh thistle in rough ground sheep pastures
Where: Malham Tarn
When: July 2003
Status: SSSI
Area: 50 acres
Detail: 4 men 5 days. Camping on-site

Reference: R024 ****

Problem: Ragwort in permanent pasture
Where: Golden Gate Caravan site, Ampleforth, York
When: July 2003
Status: Countryside Stewardship
Area: 4.14 Hectares (10 acres)
Detail: 128 man-hours (4 men X 4 days) Problem exacerbated by over-wintering sheep, after late cutting to keep within Countryside Stewardship rules. Recommended the confinement of sheep to a small area, as ground becomes winter wet.

Reference: D024B

Demonstration & Talk delivered to a small group of farmers in the Lake District.
This event organized by Cumbria Organics.
Report: none

Reference: D025 *

Problem: Docks & Ragwort in pasture
Where: Kent & East Sussex
When: May /June / July 2003
Status: Countryside Stewardship & Organic
Area: Unrecorded
Detail: Demonstrations to Volunteers and farmers

Reference: R026 **

Problem: Creeping thistle, Docks, Spear Thistle in arable & permanent pasture
Where: The Netherton Centre, Battle, East Sussex
When: November 2003
Status: Organic
Area: Unrecorded
Details: Speak to Farming Group & Demonstrate RIP

Reference: R027 *

Problem: Ragwort on lightly grazed downland
Where: Farthing Down Surrey
When: February 2004
Status: SSSI
Area: 120 acres
Detail: Farthing Down visited, photographed & assessed by James Briscall

Reference R028 ***

Problem: a) Docks in arable, b) Marsh & Spear thistle in pasture
Where: Spikers Hill Farm, West Ayton, North Yorkshire
When: March 2004
Area: a) 8 acres b) 70 acres
Status: Organic
Detail: 10 man-days removing Docks spreading from Countryside Stewardship band to arable beans. Also Marsh & Spear thistle in 70 acre pastureland. No follow up possible.

Reference R029 ***

Problem: Docks & Spear thistle in pasture
Where: ADAS High Mowthorpe
When: March 10/11/12/ 2004
Area: 40 acres
Status : Organic
Detail: 9 man-days removing old Docks & Spear thistles from pastures, and clear the dividing track between arable fields. Some minimal work along Stonefield fence-line

Reference: D030 *****

Problem: Docks in wheat
Where: Eshott Estate, Northumberland
When: April 2004.
Area: Unrecorded (but large)
Status: Organic.
Detail: Visit Northumberland & Durham Machinery Ring workforce, who were removing broken (but shooting) dock roots in wheat crops. Docks spreading from plantations & hedgerows.
Report: (includes DOCK WARNING)

Reference: R031 ***

Problem: Marsh & Spear thistle in pastures
Where Ingleborough, Lancs. (EN)
When: April 2004
Area: 40 acres (approx.)
Status: SSSI
Detail: 10 man-days. Remove Marsh & Spear Thistle from pastures beneath limestone pavement. Sheffield workforce overnights in bunk-barn

Reference: T032 *****

Problem: Docks in temporary (but long term) grass
Where: Hill Top Farm, Spaunton, North Yorkshire(The Moorfield trial)
When: April / May 2004
Area: 7.5 acres
Status: Organic
Detail: Remove 12000 Docks & Compost them. HDRA monitored. Cost £100 per acre

Reference: D033 *

Problem: Creeping & Spear thistle in sheep pasture
Where: Mau Famau, North Wales
When April 2004
Area: 30 acres
Status: Organic/Countryside Stewardship
Detail: Supply tools & demonstrate to local contractor, on site

Reference: R034 ***

Problem: Creeping Thistle, Spear Thistle, Ragwort, in long grass
Where: Rawcliffe Meadows, York
When: April / May 2004
Area: 25 acres
Status: Countryside Stewardship
Detail: 8 man days. Chisel Creeping thistle, L-D Spear thistle, Dock, some Ragwort from flood bank

Reference: D035 *

Problem: Creeping & Spear thistle in long grass parkland pastures
Where: Kirkham Abbey, York
When: May 2004
Area: 8 acres
Status: SSSI
Detail: FWAG event. Speak to some 40 farmers, conservationists & representatives from Yorkshire Water. Demonstrate Chisel Hoe solution

Reference: D036 *****

Problem: Creeping thistle in under-grazed meadows
Where: Bishop Stortford, Hertfordshire
When: May 2004
Area: 30 acres (approx)
Status: Countryside Stewardship
Detail: Discussion & demonstration to volunteers. Organized by Hertfordshire County Council. Work with 15 volunteers, chiseling light quantities of Creeping thistle. 15 volunteers 1.5 metres apart, made a 35 metre length of people stretched across the field. A machine this wide does not exist.

Reference: R037 *

Where / When / Detail: May 2004: 2nd Site visit to Farthing Down.

Reference: R038 **

Problem: Creeping & Spear thistle in pasture
Where: May: Kirkham Abbey, York
When: May 2004
Area: 7 acres
Status: SSSI
Detail: Follow-on from demo. 4 man-days chiseling Creeping thistle in pasture. Commissioned by AONB Unit.

Reference: D039 *

Problem: Creeping & Spear thistle in long grass meadows
Where: Hob Moor York
When: June 2004
Detail: Supply trial tools to BTCV & Friends

Reference: R040 *****

Problem: Ragwort in down-land pasture
Where: Farthing Down, Surrey (Corporation of London)
When. June 4th - 11th 2004
Area: 60 acres
Status SSSI (EN)
Detail: Remove Common & Hoary Ragwort rosettes. Also what is visible of 2005 crop.
Establish the beginnings of South East Workforce. 25 man days.

Reference: R041 **

Problem: General Maintenance Docks, Spear & Creeping thistle
Where: Hill Top Farm, Spaunton, York
When: May / June / July 2004
Area: Various
Status: Organic
Detail: Follow-up on Moor field, Docks in Spring Wheat, Spear Thistles at High Cross. Continue control on pastures & Common Land. Creeping Thistle, Bracken, Spear thistle. (4 Local lads at work/ 2 weeks). Topping control on moorland pastures.

Reference: R042 **

Problem: Docks spreading into ancient wildflower meadow (lightly grazed in Autumn)
Where: Howsham Barn Farm, York
When: July 2004
Area: 7 acres
Status: Countryside Stewardship
Detail: Follow-on work from 2003

Reference: R043 *****

Problem: Ragwort
Where: Farthing Down, Surrey
When: July 2004
Area: 60 acres
Status: SSSI
Detail: Follow-up work for Corporation of London. 20 man-days of follow-up. Independent Workforce. (Visited by Lazy Dog)

Reference: D043A

Problem: Thistle and Ragwort in cattle-grazed water meadows
Where: Sulham Estate, Pangbourne, Reading
When: July 2004 organized by English Nature, Thames & Chiltern
Status SSSI & Organic
Area: inapplicable
Detail: Talk about our photographic display of different weeding contracts, and demonstrate to a group of farmers and conservationists on site. Share the day with two machinery manufacturers (Record) and the Eco-puller.

Reference: R044 ****

Problem: Ragwort & Spear thistle in old pastures (cattle)
Where: ADAS High Mowthorpe
When: July. 2004
Area: 40 acres
Status: Organic
Detail: 2.5 man-days. Duggleby

Reference: D045 **

Problem: Creeping & Spear/Marsh thistle in sheep pastures
Where: Malham. English Nature/National Trust
When. July 20th 2004
Status: SSSI
Area: Unrecorded / large
Detail: Demonstrate & talk to some 30 assembled farmers, conservationists, water-board officers. Day shared with demonstrations of Weed-wiper and Chemical solutions.

Reference: R046 *****

Problem: Creeping thistle (plus some Spear), in permanently grazed sheep pasture
Where: Bank Farm, Harrogate, North Yorkshire
When: Early August 2004
Area: 130 acres
Status: Organic & Countryside Stewardship
Detail: Demonstrate effect of Chisel Hoeing (2 man-days). Too late in season. Very High Density of plants (200 + rosettes to 9 sq. metres). Recommend confining sheep in winter, starting trials of repeated cutting with small flail heather mower, in very bad areas. Close to ground, three times in growing season.

Reference: D047 *

Where: Demonstration, Exhibition & Displays at the Great Yorkshire, Ryedale & Stokesley Agricultural Shows
When: July-September 2004.

Reference: D048 *

Problem: Docks in arable & grassland
Where: Duchy College, Organic Farm, Cornwall
When: September 2004. September: (Org) Demonstrate & talk at. 1 Day-conference, Camborne, Cornwall
Status: Organic
Area: Unrecorded
Detail: Demonstrate & Talk

Reference: D049

Problem: Weeds Focus Group
When: October 2004
Where: HDRA Coventry
Detail: Attend and display photos

Reference: R050

Problem: Creeping thistle on permanently grazed pastures
Where: Appleton & Spaunton Commons
When: November 2004
Area: (300 acres ?)
Status: Organic / Countryside Stewardship
Detail: Arrange a demonstration & discussion for Yorkshire Water PLC, with game- keeper for Spaunton Estate, using close-to-ground setting of small flail mower for the control of creeping on the edge of unfenced moorland.

Unlisted: Attendance at several weed group meetings organized by the HDRA in Coventry.