Turn­ing the tide on knotweed in Fort Wil­liam

The Oban Times - - NEWS -

KNOTWEED along the Fort Wil­liam Loch shore is fi­nally be­ing brought un­der con­trol af­ter three years.

Lochaber Fish­eries Trust says vis­i­tors to the town will no longer be greeted by the sight of knotweed run­ning ram­pant as ar­eas that were once dense blocks of this ag­gres­sive, alien plant are now be­ing re­claimed by na­tive species.

A part­ner­ship be­tween the trust and the Crim­i­nal Jus­tice Ser­vice saw of­fend­ers who were car­ry­ing out com­mu­nity pay­back or­ders and were trained in the safe use of pes­ti­cides in­ject ev­ery stem of knotweed with con­cen­trated weed­killer. Now three years on the knotweed is fi­nally suc­cumb­ing to this sus­tained at­tack.

Lucy Ballantyne from Lochaber Fish­eries Trust said: ‘ We’ve re­ceived ex­tremely pos­i­tive feed­back from lo­cal res­i­dents who are glad to have their view of the loch back. There are still sig­nif­i­cant ar­eas of knotweed around Lochaber, but this shows that with a co- or­di­nated ef­fort it can be con­trolled.’

Dean Kennedy from the Crim­i­nal Jus­tice Ser­vice com­mented: ‘It was a great pro­ject for crim­i­nal jus­tice ser­vices to be in­volved in and it is an ex­cel­lent ex­am­ple of peo­ple who are on com­mu­nity pay­back or­ders is­sued by the courts putting their time to good use on such a worth­while cause.’

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