TOPSOIL manufacturing facilities free of 'problem' plants

A survey of British Sugar TOPSOIL's manufacturing facilities has confirmed that all four sites are free of the problem species Japanese knotweed and horsetail.

TOPSOIL conditioning area. Image: Supplied
TOPSOIL conditioning area. Image: Supplied

Once established, these plants are extremely difficult to eradicate and topsoil containing spores, tubers or the smallest section of rhizome from the two plants is compromised and will import the problem to the site for which the soil is destined. Moving soil contaminated with Japanese knotweed, other than to a disposal site authorised to deal with it, can result in prosecution.

The company commissions soil and landscape consultancy Tim O'Hare Associates LLP to carry out a bi-annual survey of its sites at Bury St Edmunds, Cantley, Newark and Wissington.

Soil ponds, drying lagoons, and conditioning, screening and storage areas were all closely inspected in July this year at the height of the growing season and it was confirmed that "at the time of [the] surveys, no stands of Japanese knotweed or areas of horsetail were observed at any of the sites inspected."

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