Roundup - a rant!
Poisonous and probably carcinogenic, Glyphosate, the key ingredient in Roundup is everywhere. The Irish government is still supporting its use – despite the fact that we have the 2nd highest level of Glyphosate in our surface water in the EU.
Nature has adapted to this chemical assault, and now Roundup is being replaced with a combination product containing Glyphosate and 2, 4-D, another, more toxic herbicide, also with links to human cancers and other diseases.
Walking on the lanes around my home, I am overwhelmed with a sense of wonder at the variety and beauty of the wildflowers. In the garden, they are seen by some as weeds, but look again - they deserve a place in our gardens and in the countryside – foxgloves, campion, cow parsley, bluebells, dandilions, bugle.
Driving in to Bantry from my home in Ahakista, I am horrified by the brown, dead, barren areas where people have used weedkiller. How does that look better than nature’s gift of beautiful flowers, grasses and ferns?
Then there are huge tracks of land that have been given the same treatment – farmers have killed the ‘weeds’ on their land in order to sow monoculture grass, not a buttercup, daisy, sorrel, herb in sight - ever wonder why Ireland is so green?
If you need to clear weeds from your driveway, the organic alternative is a mixture of oil, vinegar and soap. There are commercial organic solutions available too. You could also try burning them off with a torch.
Ideally, where possible, let nature do its thing on the verges, then in September/ October, strim them, leaving the seed heads to drop for a day, then rake them off.
With lawns, lets get away from the sheet of green – the daisies and buttercups are food for our pollinators. Moss is lovely to walk on -why not take off your shoes and walk on the spongy damp moss.
Try mowing a path through to another area of your garden and you will end up feeling like you are strolling through a meadow in the wilds!
Now’s the time – lets appreciate, and work with nature. Nothing else is permanent. Spread the word - ban Roundup.