Friday, September 3, 2010

Fire Weeding: As Fun as It Sounds


As we learned a few months ago, summer weeds can be a lot more fierce and resilient out in the fields where the winds and other variables are a lot more unpredictable than in the greenhouse.  This week Alec and Zach gave us a tutorial on one of the coolest weeding techniques I've ever heard of.  It's probably not something us city folk will get to use too often, but...

it's always good to learn different skills and methods, who knows maybe I'll end up working on my own farm one day, you never know.  Here Zach is suited up with this propane backpack, probably a little nervous about handing it over to us.

Zach explained that fire weeding uses extreme heat to kill young unwanted weeds, while their cell structure is still young and vulnerable.  It's not actually lighting the plants on fire that kills them, rather, heating up the water within the plant's cells rendering them unable to grow. 

Another key point is to maintain a narrow range and avoid the outsides of the bed so as to not light the surrounding beds on fire.  

A little twist turns on the propane tank.

A little turn of the knob sends the gas out.

Press down and get to work.

FIRE!! Man's best friend.

A beautiful background makes hard work a little easier.


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