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Avatar for MommaGow
May 19, 2021 1:26 PM CST

my day lilies have an intruder..... stinging nettle! I dont know how to rid the stinging nettle without harming my day lilies. it was suggested a heavy dose of lime? these day lilies were my father-in-law so they are precious to our family. any thoughts?
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May 19, 2021 2:29 PM CST
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4b)
Annuals Native Plants and Wildflowers Keeps Horses Dog Lover Daylilies Region: Canadian
Butterflies Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Garden Sages Plant Identifier
High amounts of lime would more likely hurt the daylilies than the stinging nettles. Perhaps hand pulling with heavy gloves is worth a try if there aren't many yet, keep pulling regrowth until the nettle is exhausted and gives up. I have the same problem in one bed but herbicides aren't allowed in my area. In the USA there may be a herbicide that would work over the top (Pat @Hortaholic ?), or are you located elsewhere?
Last edited by sooby May 19, 2021 2:44 PM Icon for preview
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May 19, 2021 2:52 PM CST
Name: Orion
Boston, MA (Zone 6b)
Bee Lover Birds Butterflies Daylilies Dragonflies Foliage Fan
Lilies Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
If you are very very careful, and do it on a calm non-windy day you might get away with a small hand-held spray gently up-close to the nettles. You can even put a piece of cardboard (from the box the spray comes in) between the spray and the daylily as you do it. Even then, in such close-quarters and a gently-gently approach, I would still be very nervous doing this.

This one is waterproof in 15mins (so will not leak off into the daylily water when watering). In theory.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/prod...
Gardening: So exciting I wet my plants!
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May 19, 2021 4:02 PM CST
Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
Forum moderator Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Plant Identifier Garden Ideas: Level 1
Welcome to the site!

They are easy to pull, use leather gloves and grab them the near the base of the plant, if you wet/soak the soil it makes it easier.
As Yogi Berra said, “It's tough to make predictions, especially about the future.”
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May 19, 2021 6:39 PM CST
Name: Pat
Columbus, Ohio (Zone 6a)
Annuals Seed Starter Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers Garden Art Daylilies
Garden Photography Butterflies Bookworm Plant and/or Seed Trader Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
@MommaGow, welcome to garden.org! You'll find lots of friendly and helpful people here!

Unfortunately, despite Sue @sooby asking me if I can help, I can't even though I would like to. I don't know enough about the situation. And I have no experience battling stinging nettles in daylilies.

The only herbicide I am familiar with that will kill (some) broadleaf plants without harming daylilies is Lontrel. But it's not available in small quantities, not labeled for home garden use, and without looking up the label I don't even know if it will kill nettles.

Hand pulling with thick gloves and a sturdy long sleeved jacket such as denim or poplin might work if in fact they are shallow rooted. One site said they have rhizomes. Even if they do, continually removing new growth will eventually exhaust the nettle plants.

How large is the area? It might be most effective to dig out the daylilies after flowering, hold them in pots, and treat the bed repeatedly with herbicide until there are no new sprouts. Alternatively, put a light proof cover over the empty bed until the nettles are exhausted.

Sorry I can't offer any easy ideas. Maybe someone who has actually dealt with nettles will have something more encouraging to offer.

Pat
Using my middle name Ann wasn’t working well. Back to being one Pat among many others. 😄
Avatar for MommaGow
May 19, 2021 7:20 PM CST

thank you for the replies. the area is small, well 25 feet by 8 feet. i did spend yesterday during the day pulling the nettle, until it was too hot working with a coat and leather gloves. (i live on east coast in delaware). I made a 55 gallon tub of stinging nettle fertilizer to use later. it is getting too hot to work with at this time, i may have to wait until spring now. they are easy to pull, but for everyone i pull, it seems like another seems to appear.... not fun :-(

a suggestion i saw is to cut the stinging nettle down each year but that would mean cutting back the day lilies too. if i do this, will the day lilies die back too?
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May 19, 2021 7:23 PM CST
Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
Forum moderator Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Plant Identifier Garden Ideas: Level 1
Just me, but I found I did not need a coat, which should make it easier for you. Go Blue Hens!
As Yogi Berra said, “It's tough to make predictions, especially about the future.”
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May 19, 2021 7:26 PM CST
Name: Tim
West Chicago, IL (Zone 5a)
Daylilies Native Plants and Wildflowers Vegetable Grower
My neighbor has nettle in his burn area behind his house and it often invades me. I had never seen it before, so I learned the hard way what it was. I mean the really hard way, because I thought the sting was coming from the previous weed I had pulled, and so I had to pull a second one before I realized which one was doing that to me. Smiling

I agree with them being fairly easy pulls after a decent rain, when you have good gloves. I use latex dipped garden gloves sometimes and don't get stung, but leather or medieval knight gloves would be safer. And then follow up every week looking for small growth. I would recommend, since it is smaller, if you can isolate the new growth, hitting it with a more aggressive herbicide that is more inclined to get into the roots. It might shorten the amount of time it takes to complete the eradication.

Tim
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May 19, 2021 7:29 PM CST
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4b)
Annuals Native Plants and Wildflowers Keeps Horses Dog Lover Daylilies Region: Canadian
Butterflies Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Garden Sages Plant Identifier
MommaGow said:
a suggestion i saw is to cut the stinging nettle down each year but that would mean cutting back the day lilies too. if i do this, will the day lilies die back too?


I doubt that would work, exhausting unwanted plants by cutting back needs to be done repeatedly throughout the growing season, not just once. Cutting back once would not kill the daylilies but nor would it kill the nettles.
Avatar for Deryll
May 20, 2021 9:21 AM CST
Ohio (Zone 5a)
There is a herbicide called Confront that you can spray directly over daylilies that will kill broadleaf weeds, but it is kinda expensive.
I ordered the generic 2D from DIY Pest Control and it was a lot cheaper. You only use 3 teaspoons in a gallon of water, and the
weeds will be wilted over by the next day. You can also use this on your lawn (golf courses). You also need to spray before the
daylilies begin to scape, or after bloom has finished, as it will cause the scapes to twist and curl.
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May 20, 2021 9:34 AM CST
Name: pam
gainesville fl (Zone 8b)
Bee Lover The WITWIT Badge Region: Ukraine Enjoys or suffers hot summers Pollen collector Native Plants and Wildflowers
Hydrangeas Hummingbirder Dragonflies Daylilies Butterflies Birds
I would just pull them...with gloves of course, as suggestd above.
Avatar for Wildbirds
May 20, 2021 11:10 AM CST

I've eliminated invasive plants & weeds in a few instances (NOT always 100% with my first efforts) by pulling or cutting the weeds back to the ground .... THEN covering the weed's base around the daylilies with 2-4 sheets thickness of newspapers (Or a single layer of cardboard) & then a layer of wood-chips or similar mulch. (Lasagna style) ... Encourage the daylilies to grow with ample water & fertilizer so as to shade/smother any new weed growth attempts around the daylilies crown.

Over time this smothers the weeds. Keep the paper + mulch down for the balance of the season. (The newspaper will break down in sometimes weeks and disappear - especially if kept wet or damp. Some perennial weed's roots might survive that first attempt .... NOT a great deal of work in my opinion .... PLUS avoids chemicals.

I've eliminated or controlled various wild grasses (Lots of pastureland nearby) + vinca minor + a handful of other persistent weeds with this method. I did find that some weed-grasses species (orchard grass? etc can be really difficult adversaries with their ability to push looooong aggressive runners through the soil under the papers+ mulch to emerge along the outer edges. BUT then you are dealing with more-or-less one at a time new growth sprouts - easy to cope with.

Ain't gardening fun, eh. ..... I like to think that these weeds - they only become weeds when we label them as such - have evolved over eons to ensure they live successfully enough to reproduce. Some by seeds only. BUT the toughest ones have evolved a bag of tricks including seeds + runners (BOTH above &/or under ground) and the capability to root pieces simply dropped onto moist ground.

- MGP
Avatar for gini37sbcglobalnet
May 23, 2021 11:48 AM CST
Name: Gini Hunter
Dow, IL
When I MUST spray I use a shield I make from a milk jug. Cut off top leaving handle well attached, and the bottom. Slit one side and you can isolate what you want to spray. I keep it with the spray all season so it's ready to go. A paring knife and scissors will do the job.
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May 23, 2021 12:40 PM CST
Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
Forum moderator Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Plant Identifier Garden Ideas: Level 1
Great idea!
As Yogi Berra said, “It's tough to make predictions, especially about the future.”
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May 27, 2021 1:01 AM CST
Name: Pat
Columbus, Ohio (Zone 6a)
Annuals Seed Starter Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers Garden Art Daylilies
Garden Photography Butterflies Bookworm Plant and/or Seed Trader Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
@MommaGow, welcome to garden.org! You'll find lots of friendly and helpful people here!

Unfortunately, despite Sue @sooby asking me if I can help, I can't even though I would like to. I don't know enough about the situation. And I have no experience battling stinging nettles in daylilies.

The only herbicide I am familiar with that will kill (some) broadleaf plants without harming daylilies is Lontrel. But it's not available in small quantities, not labeled for home garden use, and without looking up the label I don't even know if it will kill nettles.

Hand pulling with thick gloves and a sturdy long sleeved jacket such as denim or poplin might work if in fact they are shallow rooted. One site said they have rhizomes. Even if they do, continually removing new growth will eventually exhaust the nettle plants.

How large is the area? It might be most effective to dig out the daylilies after flowering, hold them in pots, and treat the bed repeatedly with herbicide until there are no new sprouts. Alternatively, put a light proof cover over the empty bed until the nettles are exhausted.

Sorry I can't offer any easy ideas. Maybe someone who has actually dealt with nettles will have something more encouraging to offer.

Pat
Using my middle name Ann wasn’t working well. Back to being one Pat among many others. 😄
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