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Discussion Starter #1
After last winter's runoff I had some wash problems along the road.

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The good news is, the state quickly came by and stabilized the shoulder.

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The problem now is I'm getting growth up through the rocks.

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It's not bad yet but it's only a matter of time before it affects visibility. Short of an annual dose of Roundup 365, anybody have any suggestions for an implement that would make this a non-issue? I'm not trying to turn this into a manicured lawn. Just something that'll keep the growth down to avoid visibility problems.

Thanks
 

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If it is not to thick of stocks, a quality string trimmer will do the job. However, it looks like you may have stuff coming up that is a thicker stock than grass. For my Stihl "bicycle handle" brush cutter, i have a head with three knife like poly blades that cuts right through that stuff.

https://www.stihlusa.com/products/trimmers-and-brushcutters/trimmer-heads-and-blades/polycut/

Or, if you like new tools, an extended reach hedge trimmer or power scythe would also work.

HLA 85 Hedge Trimmer | Lightweight Battery Powered Trimmer | STIHL USA
FH-KM 145 Power Scythe Attachment for STIHL Kombisystem | STIHL USA
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Weed whacker.
Thanks but I was hoping for something a little more efficient. Besides, these ankles don't handle walking on those kinds of uneven surfaces like they used to.

If it is not to thick of stocks, a quality string trimmer will do the job. However, it looks like you may have stuff coming up that is a thicker stock than grass. For my Stihl "bicycle handle" brush cutter, i have a head with three knife like poly blades that cuts right through that stuff.

https://www.stihlusa.com/products/trimmers-and-brushcutters/trimmer-heads-and-blades/polycut/
Yeah, there is some heavy stuff that comes up if I don't stay on top of it. I initially cleared the path to mark out my driveway with something similar. Problem is the way the road curves I need to go down a good distance, and when I do this by hand, I have to be standing on a moderately busy road (18 wheeler's not uncommon) with my head on a swivel. I was hoping for something a little quicker than a string trimmer type tool.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)

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I think that I would call someone at State and let them know that there is a problem. Chances are that there is some sort of program to fix those ditches. It's worth a phone call to find out.
Failing that, how about a scicle mower attachment for your tractor.
 

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I think that I would call someone at State and let them know that there is a problem. Chances are that there is some sort of program to fix those ditches. It's worth a phone call to find out.
Failing that, how about a scicle mower attachment for your tractor.
AROUND HERE the state comes around and sprays some areas like that. whatever they use it keeps nuthing from growing for the summertime or into the fall. one guy drives while one does the spraying. they spray everywhere a culvert crosses the road--at least here where i live on our back roads-then sometime during the summer-a small tractor comes along and mows the banks off -used to be a sickle bar mower-but now i seen they are using a different type mower. can't think of the word of it for now:banghead:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I think that I would call someone at State and let them know that there is a problem. Chances are that there is some sort of program to fix those ditches. It's worth a phone call to find out.
Failing that, how about a scicle mower attachment for your tractor.
I did call the state (actually PA has a web site to report road problems and fortunately(?) this is a state road) and that's how I got the stone. The state does come buy a couple times over the summer and mows the shoulder, but they only cut back about 4-5 feet. I doubt driveway visibility being impaired by weeds growing on my property is something they'll be concerned with.

I'm pretty much a noob regarding tractors and implements available. If Tim, as in Tractor Time with, hasn't made a video showing it, I probably don't know about it. RodW's pointer to the scythe weed wacker attachment gave me the idea for search terms to enter into google and found the sickle bar attachments. Something like that on the 3ph is what I was hoping someone would point me to, so thanks. But unless I come across a really good deal on a used one it's hard to justify the price for my limited usage. Although maybe I could contract myself out to the local township for shoulder maintenance. :)
 

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Dan, Any implement or tool is eventual going to hit the stones and dull/break, or otherwise damage the tool...other than a string trimmer that you're not fond of! I'd go with Round-Up or some type of weed killer. Watch the weather and spray a week before any forecasted rain. Hopefully, the chemical(s) will break down and not pollute where ever that ditch drains into. Spring & mid-summer and you're done with it. Bob
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
AROUND HERE the state comes around and sprays some areas like that. whatever they use it keeps nuthing from growing for the summertime or into the fall. one guy drives while one does the spraying. they spray everywhere a culvert crosses the road--at least here where i live on our back roads-then sometime during the summer-a small tractor comes along and mows the banks off -used to be a sickle bar mower-but now i seen they are using a different type mower. can't think of the word of it for now:banghead:
After a little more time on Google I found flail attachments. Once every few years the state comes by with something like this and it goes through some pretty thick growth. Would love one but again, hard to justify for the couple hundred feet I need to clear.

Sidearm-SL420-Electric.jpg

At the moment, I'm leaning toward RodW's extended reach hedge trimmer. Gives me good reach so I won't have to be walking on the rocks and with the nice broad head should cut a nice swath with each pass. Plus, I actually do have some bushes I need the step ladder and every inch of reach I have to trim. This would solve that problem also.
 

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Spray the rocks with glyphosate once a month - 5 minute job.

Weed trimmer the grass between the rocks and the road - 5 minute job twice a month.

It’s really quite simple and quick - don’t overthink it.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Spray the rocks with glyphosate once a month - 5 minute job.

Weed trimmer the grass between the rocks and the road - 5 minute job twice a month.

It’s really quite simple and quick - don’t overthink it.
Adding up the space on either side of the driveway I need to maintain to keep good visibility we're talking a couple hundred feet. Even if I did religiously trim twice a month, 5 minutes is a bit optimistic. I probably didn't make the scope of the problem clear.

The only problem I have with just killing anything that grows is root structure, even of weeds, helps prevent the washout. A neighbor about a mile away had ballast on the shoulder like the state put in for me and after last winter's runoff most of the rocks are now strewn about his yard where his property levels off at the bottom of the hill. I'd just as soon have the roots develop to act like a net to help hold the rocks in place. It's only a matter of time until sediment from runoff fills the gaps between the rocks with soil, unless they wash away first.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
After looking the situation over and giving it a little more thought, I think the best long term solution is for me to use the tractor and clear a path on my property side of the gully for the distance I have to maintain. That'll give me a safe place to stand while keeping the shoulder weed growth under control. For a good part of the downhill side of my driveway I'll be standing at the top of a 3-4' bank and clearing the slope. That long reach hedge trimmer is looking like the perfect tool (with price being considered :)). Being able to actually mow part of it will be a big help and it'll have the added benefit of now being able to drive the tractor around that side of the woods to collect firewood.

I'm still learning that with this tractor what before seemed like a huge undertaking is now probably only an afternoon's work.

Anyway, thanks all. Just needed to hear some other thoughts on the task to get my brain to change directions.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
In closing...

Just to sort of close out the thread, I used the tractor to give me a clearing path on my property side of the shoulder. This gave me a place to stand to clear most of the growth without having to stand on the road.

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Picked up a DeWalt Telescoping Pole Hedge Trimmer

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And made quick work of the weeds. Wish I'd taken a before pic because they were much higher than in the pic above. It was nice being able to just walk along and cut a 22" wide swath, extend the pole and repeat.

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Thanks again to all that posted and in particular RodW for the extended reach hedge trimmer. I'd never seen them before your post.
 
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