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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    mendocino county N Calif
    Posts
    34

    Default what's the deal with star thistle these days?

    Hi all,

    In Northern California, Yellow star Thistle use to be a really big nectar source.
    Maybe it still is for you. For Us its a bust. We used to get barrels of honey- really good honey-popular with the public. We have had to seek other nectar sources as some locations have become worthless after blackberry flowers are done. Seems like it cut into the bottom line... then again we are in a drought too...so late summer and fall is bone dry with no nectar.

    I have heard from several sources that the state or some govt entity released two different wevils into the environment with the expressed purpose to bore into the seed heads and prevent spread of this "Invasive Non Native" These sorts of releases seem really short sighted and while it may serve to asuage the grazing concerns of some ranchers; its bad for bee keepers...IMO. Any one have more info?

    Why are they in continuing to release new invasive species if their goal is to stamp out non natives. After the thistle is gone what will the wevils go after then ?maybe the beloved ca. poppy....?

    Perhaps we should tread lightly on this subject after all humans are did not originally evolve in the new world. People...The ultimate invasive species...HMMMM

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    VENTURA, California, USA
    Posts
    3,637

    Default Why are they in continuing to release new invasive species

    The biological control of the yellow star thistle is very species specific! I remember that as early as 1958 the work was being done on the biological control of star thistle. So, I guess that the biological control is kicking in after all these years. The honey was a good crop following the barley harvest and grazing lands. But, I dispised it when I had to buck hay bales!:mad:
    Regards,
    Ernie
    Ernie
    My websitehttp://bees4u.com/

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Location
    NE Calif.
    Posts
    2,269

    Default

    Same here. We used to get big crops of star thistle. Its been years since we have harvested any. The rain has to come at the right time, and it just doesn't rain here anymore . But the 'bugs ' were released here a few years ago also.So that may have something to do with it. They released them right in my best thistle yard. I should have taken a can of Raid to them!
    I am quite sure I am the only person around here that likes the thistle .

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,643

    Default

    The San Francisco Water Department has been performing Star Thistle control on their properties. Also Eucalyptus clearing. There goes the neighborhood.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Auburn and Tri-Cities Washington
    Posts
    334

    Default

    Up here in Washington State they have been crop dusting them with something that keeps them from reproducing and stunts their growth. In areas where they where waist deep they are only a couple inches tall and very thin. It has nothing to do with the rain here.
    \"The man who sets out to carry a cat by its tail learns something that will always be useful and which never will grow dim or doubtful.\" - Mark Twain

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