We have a piece of land behind the creek probably about 3000-5000 sq ft that has no machinery access - creek is running in deep ravine . It is cleared of trees and time ago it was one hole golf course built by previous owner as our neighbor told us. Now it is covered with bittersweet, poison ivy and ferns. There are few spots that are clearer than others, we suspect this is where the artificial grass fabric was placed. We can see few pieces of it , but most covered with organic deposition. I would really like to reclaim this land and build full enclosure about 25X18 to plant honeyberry bushes. The question is - how to accomplish clean up and how to keep jungles away from my cleared land.
For clean up the idea is to visualize approximate borders of future enclosure, move borders outward about 6’ each direction and mark clean up area. In the cleanup area go with shovel and/or mattock digging up vines. Did I mention I have to do it in hazmat suit, rubber boots and gloves because of poison ivy?(Is there any poison ivy screen for skin I can use? ) Probably also protection glasses… I will have to pile debris somewhere around there, because it will contain poison ivy and couldn’t be burned. The ferns is a different story. Most of them growing in thick patches and I am not sure I can really dig them up. I hope I will be able to place the enclosure the way I do not have to dig up ferns. After I removed as much of the vines I could I should wait until new grows from roots I left appears. Not sure if this happens in a week, month or next spring. But this new wave of vines I am planning to spray as many time as needed while it continues to regrow. The best hope is if I start now I should be able to kill all the roots by fall of 2024 (realistic or not?) and be ready to plant in spring of 2025. Now question is how to keep jungles from reclaiming my land back? My idea is, to cover 6’ wide perimeter around the enclosure with heavy duty material - not sure yet, will it be that artificial grass I am going to dig out, heavy duty landscaping fabric or something else(I am thinking about 6mil plastic and landscaping fabric above it to cover from sun.This should create a death row for any growing thing. But every fall I will have to clean up this strip from leaves so it doesn’t turn into breeding grounds and every summer watch vines attempting to go over or under. And watch for seeds germinating inside the enclosure
Now about actual schedule. It would be great to make first strike on vines when it will make them more vulnerable. Not sure though what time of the year it is. The easiest would be doing initial clean up in fall - poison ivy will be very visible with red leaves and cool weather is a plus when you working in hazmat suit. But will it be the best time to do max damage? Or it is better to go in the middle of the summer?
Sure I want to plant my bushes as soon as possible. But I do not see a different course of action that will allow me to plant next spring.
I am all ears to hear about your experience fighting jungles and you suggestions about my plan.