Project: Feasibility of Japanese knotweed control in the Corran grazings area 
Community group: Lochgilphead Phoenix Project
Location: Lochgilphead
Region: Inveraray, Knapdale, Kilmartin & Crinan

Project summary

ACT Hubs commissioned a feasibility study for the management of Japanese knotweed in the Corran grazings area of Lochgilphead. The Lochgilphead Phoenix Project will use the study results to guide their future plans for developing the area for recreational use. 

Project details

Japanese knotweed - getting in the way of a good idea?

The Lochgilphead Phoenix Project approached ACT Hubs with a long-term plan to develop the Corran grazings area in Lochgilphead in to an accessible community space including trails, wildlife hides, and interpretation. The site has extensive coverage of the invasive plant, Japanese knotweed. This restricts site access and has implications for future development. Japanese knotweed is a strong, fast-growing weed that can quickly dominate an area and cause damage to roads, paths and buildings. It has a deep root system and spreads easily therefore is difficult to get rid of. Various chemical and non-chemical treatments are available but the suitability of each treatment depends on the situation. All treatments require prolonged commitment to ensure the weed is properly controlled. 

Support from ACT Hubs

Managing the Japanese knotweed at the Corran grazings would be the first stage for any future development of the site and would come at a cost for anyone taking responsibility for the area. We commissioned a feasibility study for the control of Japanese knotweed to help inform the costs and responsibilities that may come with the site.

Ashfield Japanese Knotweed won the contract for the study. The study had to include a survey and map of the site, an evaluation of possible control methods, estimated costs and timescales for delivery, required consents and permissions, an appraisal of potential environmental impacts, and advice for on-going management and monitoring.

Ashfield Japanese Knotweed produced a detailed report that covered all these points and presented three scenarios for management, each of which were tendered by four contractors. The scenarios were: 1. herbicide management of all Japanese knotweed at the site; 2. herbicide management to prevent further spread and allow construction of footpaths; 3. herbicide management to prevent spread in to third party land. Options for community training, and advice on liability were also presented.

The feasibility study has been shared with the Lochgilphead Phoenix Project. Malcolm Sinclair (Secretary) said “the report is comprehensive and will be key in developing our plans for the Corran”.

More information

The report is available to anyone interested in the area. If you would like a copy please get in touch with us: [email protected]