How to eliminate liverwort.
In our nursery we quite often have liverwort emerge, it’s especially prevalent in our shade house, however throughout winter can start growing on smaller plants outside too. It’s been a constant battle over the years trying to kill the liverwort without damaging the plants we are trying to grow. This past year we were recommended a product that has been a game changer in our war on liverwort.
What is liverwort?
Liverwort is a member of the bryophyte family which includes mosses and hornworts. They prefer moist low light areas. Liverworts spread via spores
Our saviour in question is called regen shield and it’s produced by a company called Grayson Australia. Regen shield is a acidic wood extract. It’s created using the waste sawdust from hardwood.
Regen shield is said to:
- promote soil activity
- promote growth and plant stimulation
- Reduce soil pH
- May assist with increasing soil nutrient availability
This is done by adding natural smoke extracts to the soil, thus replicating the process of a natural fire. But more importantly for us, it eliminates members of the bryophyte family.
Regen shield can be applied using a knapsack sprayer or other similar device. It is not a systemic herbicide such as round-up, so re-application was necessary to eliminate the liverwort in our nursery setting.
I have applied it in more exposed areas such as mulch in the garden and pavers in the courtyard, and have found that one application in these areas seems to be enough to eradicate the liverwort.
To mix the solution we use the recommended 3:1 ratio. So to create 4L of spray we would mix 3 parts water to 1 part regeneration shield.
It’s recommended by the manufacturer that you do not spray directly over the foliage, to try and spray directly at the soil surface and the liverwort. For us this is almost impossible, and we decided to try spraying directly over the foliage.
It’s worth noting that Grayson recommends that you spot test the product on different varieties of plants before applying to the whole batch, this we did. So far, we have had only minor issues with some slight burning of the foliage. This occured when the temperature outside had been quite low and the spray didn’t dry fast enough (There are some photos below).
Grayson also recommends spraying at weekly intervals at a rate of 100-150mL per square metre. We usually only maintain this for a few weeks until the liverwort is completely removed.
Liverwort on helleborus
Liverwort on helleborus one day later
Liverwort on helleborus after a second application
Liverwort on helleborus 13 days after original application
Slight damage to foliage
This was due to the cold temperatures and the plant being exposed to the chemical for too long. Try to spray on days when the foliage will dry fast and this problem shouldn’t occur.
Below is a quick little video showing the above steps. We hope this has been helpful. If so please subscribe and we will continue to provide general advice on gardening problems we encounter. Happy Planting 🙂
This video is about how to remove liverwort that is growing in pot plants, without killing the plant.