Himalayan balsam is the tallest annual plant in Europe; each stem can be 2.5 metres tall. Traditional control methods are currently inadequate in controlling Himalayan balsam in the UK. Between June and October it produces clusters of purplish pink (or rarely white) helmet-shaped flowers. If you’re getting rid of Himalayan balsam plants by hand, let the cut plants lie on the ground in the sun for a few days to dry out and die before composting them. How to identify, control and dispose of Himalayan balsam. Learn to identify Himalayan Balsam. Introduced to the UK in 1839, Himalayan balsam is now a naturalised plant, found especially on riverbanks and in waste places where it has become a problem weed. Kudos to those who are still uprooting the invading Himalayan balsam plants. We have a number of balsam ‘pits’ around the nature reserve so we can safely dispose of the plants without having to drag them too far. You will need to check for regrowth regularly. Himalayan Balsam seed. Himalayan balsam (Impatiens glandulifera) is an introduced summer annual that has naturalised in the UK, mainly along riverbanks and ditches. Himalayan Balsam (Impatiens glandulifera) Controlling the Spread of Himalayan Balsam The Plant. This is usually around June. What you need to do at alert level 4. … The annual Big Pull campaign begins on Saturday 31 May, ahead of […] Himalayan balsam grows rapidly and spreads quickly, smothering other vegetation as it goes. It’s also not acceptable to dispose of Himalayan Balsam for recycling in council-provided green waste wheelie bins, or in fact to take it to tips as this constitutes a risk of spreading it even further. Do not dispose of invasive plants in the compost pile – discard them in the regular garbage. Large, tall, orchid-looking plants will flower up and down the country. They are being left strewn on roadsides, paths and pavements, and they become a hazard for walkers, especially when wet, as they get mashed into slime as people walk across them. Farming, Forestry and Rural Issues. Himalayan Balsam Removal Specialists. South Gloucestershire Council’s Wild4Life project and the Avon Invasive Weeds project work together to organise events each summer. Himalayan balsam was introduced as a garden plant in 1839, but soon escaped and became widely naturalised along riverbanks and ditches, especially close to towns. If you've ever wandered along a riverbank, pond or lake, we guarantee you will have seen it at least once! As hopefully you can tell, eradicating Himalayan balsam from a site once it has taken over is not easy. Dependent on local climate, Himalayan balsam flowers between July and October. Himalayan Balsam (Impatiens glanulifera) is an attractive looking flower, with a stout, hollow stem, trumpet shaped pink/white flowers and elliptical shaped green leaves. Impact Native Habitats: Himalayan Balsam can rapidly out-compete native plants due to its ability to rapidly reproduce and grow in dense stands. Himalayan balsam; Rhododendron ponticum; New Zealand pigmyweed (this is banned from sale) How to identify, control and dispose of plants that can harm people, livestock and the environment. The Big Pull is a community conservation project which aims to tackle the rapid spread of Himalayan balsam along our river banks and open spaces. When walking or hiking, stay on marked trails, keep pets on a leash to reduce the spread of seeds. Himalayan balsam is a tall growing annual, 2-3m (6-10ft) in height. By continuing to use this site, you agree to our use of cookies. Joining during the last few weeks of any possible Himalayan Balsam removal, I was shown the extent of the problem at some of our sites and how to correctly dispose of them – the job itself was incredibly satisfying but sometimes getting to these “forests” of Balsam was trickier than first thought. Himalayan Balsam (HB) is considered to be the tallest growing annual plant in the UK (2-3m) It is a non-native alien species introduced by the Victorians for its pretty pink bell-like flowers prompting its common name ‘Policemen’s Helmets’. The explosion of the Himalayan balsam’s fruit capsule can fire seeds up to seven metres. Himalayan Balsam. 1.11 Alternatively, herbicide spot spraying treatment of all Himalayan balsam can be carried It can only be disposed of as controlled waste as defined by the council Environmental Health Services. It is important to make sure that when disposing of Himalayan balsam, the waste disposal site has a permit to accept and dispose of invasive species. Control of Himalayan Balsam should ideally happen when the plants have grown to a good height, but have not yet flowered. Kudos to those who are still uprooting the invading Himalayan balsam plants. As GOV.UK explains, you can be fined up to £5,000 or be sent to prison for 2 years if you do not properly dispose of Himalayan balsam … To bury invasive non-native plant waste without a permit you must meet the conditions in Treatment and disposal of invasive non-native plants: RPS 178. It has an explosive seed capsule, which scatters seeds over a distance of up to 7m. Resources . List of Options. The project is a collaboration of fishing clubs, nature conservation groups and landowners. By Russ Leave a Comment. Himalayan balsam was introduced as a garden plant in 1839, but soon escaped and became widely naturalised along riverbanks and ditches, especially close to towns. Himalayan balsam is an invasive herbaceous plant that was initially introduced to North America as a garden ornamental. Himalayan Balsam is tolerant of shade and it is now impossible to map the location of rivers using distribution maps of Himalayan Balsam because it has moved into woodland habitats and moist soils too. Do not plant Himalayan Balsam in gardens or landscaping. But can I ask you to please be mindful of how you dispose of them? Uprooted plants can be left to air dry and decompose on a non-permeable membrane. Dispose of Himalayan Balsam plants in the garbage. Himalayan balsam is a tall growing annual, 2-3m (6-10ft) in height. Himalayan balsam Appearance. It can only be disposed of as controlled waste as defined by the council Environmental Health Services. Typical locations: along waterways, on derelict land, along verges and in parks. Himalayas (Northern Pakistan, Kashmir, India) What does it look like? This weed competes with plants, native to the UK, for light, nutrients, pollinators and space. Guided Nature Tours in Greater Manchester, Merseyside & Lancashire Website Built & Supported By: WebCentric360.com. 2. You should not remove soil while the seed pods are present. It’s important to time your Himalayan balsam control so you don’t inadvertently spread more seeds. It is commonly found in areas of damp soil such as river banks and nearby woodlands. Visit nonnativespecies.org for help identifying plants . Where is it originally from? Rural Priorities. Himalayan balsam plants can produce around 2500 seeds each year. A clump of plants with flowers of different colours is a lovely sight. Annual reproduction of this plant occurs in the summer, when the … Non-essential cookies are also used to … Himalayan balsam grows rapidly and spreads quickly, smothering other vegetation as it goes. GOV.WALES uses cookies which are essential for the site to work. It prefers moist soils but will grow pretty much anywhere. Himalayan Balsam is commonly found adjacent to watercourses, in damp ground, and increasingly on roadside verges. Plants can grow up to 3m tall, making this the tallest annual species growing wild in the UK. You don't have to remove … It is important to make sure that when disposing of Himalayan balsam, the waste disposal site has a permit to accept and dispose of invasive species. You should pull by hand or strim regrowth before the plants flower. If you need a more accessible version of this document please email, Himalayan balsam: controlling it on your land, Harmful (injurious) weeds and invasive non-native species, , the Western Himalayas, in the early 1800s it was spread, as these things are, to Europe, New Zealand, and North America by gardeners. • Himalayan balsam is an annual plant with bright purple-pink flowers. The plant has an explosive mechanism by which ripe seeds are hurled from the plant, to enlarge the colony or be carried away by water to fresh ground - the seeds may be thrown as far as 2m away. Eradication may be possible in two to three years unless your site is being colonised by seeds from further upstream. We have a number of balsam ‘pits’ around the nature reserve so we can safely dispose of the plants without having to drag them too far. Impatiens glandulifera. Due to its negative impacts on riverside habitats, Himalayan balsam is listed as a prohibited noxious weed in the Alberta Weed Control Act. Their dazzling colours will fill woodland, meadows and waterways and their scent will spread far and wide. This is usually around June. Japanese knotweed, Himalayan balsam, rhododendron, giant hogweed and American skunk cabbage can erode riverbanks and overshadow native plants, reducing the availability of food and habitats for native animal species. Himalayan balsam is a fairly common and widespread weed nowadays! The pulling technique must be undertaken so that whole plant is uprooted and normally best done if pulled from low down the plant - If snapping occurs at a node the pulling must be completed to include the roots. They are being left strewn on roadsides, paths and pavements, and they become a hazard for walkers, especially when wet, as they get mashed into slime as people walk across them. Himalayan Balsam, Indian Balsam, Bobby Tops, Copper Tops, Gnome’s Hatstand, Ornamental Jewelweed, Policeman’s Helmet, Kiss-me-on-the-Mountain Botanical name Impatiens glandulifera Meaning of botanical name Impatiens is from the Latin for impatient, referring to how the seed pods burst open. Produce 2500 seeds which are essential for the garden its spread by sending the seeds into wild. Wild in the UK, for light, nutrients, pollinators and space India! 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