Killing of sweet gum


Active Member
How are you all killing off sweet gum? I have cleared some trees but as you know they start growing back. Will a heavy dose of gly work at the time of cutting on the fresh cut? I am ate up with sweet gum and need to thin it out for other more desireables. The only thing I have found sweet gum is good for is feeding my goats. They love it.
I've had outstanding results treating the fresh cut stump with Tordon RTU but heavy gly will also work just not as good but much cheaper.
I use a spray bottle with about 50/50 gly/water in it. As soon as I cut the tree I spray the stump. I've also girdled some trees and sprayed them with the same. Results are pretty good with probably 80-90% mortality. I usually do my cutting in the fall, not sure if that matters or not.
I use a combination of Tordon RTU and glyphosate. I am convinced, however, that nothing short of a nuclear holocaust will kill sweetgum efficiently. I have been battling them on my 25 acres for almost 30 years. I think I have more now than when I started.

I am convinced that mixing glyphosate with kerosene and treating a girdled tree is a the most effective treatment that I have found. The kerosene seems to keep the herbicide in better contact, longer. It may take several years for it to have a good effect on larger trees though.
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I mix crossbow and glyphosate and seems to do a pretty good job. Trouble is there are so many seeds in the soil they sprout new ones like Daisies
Yeah they keep popping up everywhere including in my fields which I bush hog but still irritating. Sweet gum and hickory are my thorn right now. I don't want to take them all out at once in the woods but would like to drop a few here and there and spray. Some of these are huge with a lot of age. It's a shame to kill old trees like that and they will not be the first I take out but they need to go to make room for chestnuts and oaks. The other issue I have is sparkle berry. It is going to go eventually also if I have my say.
I would love to sell them if I could but most are not huge though a couple are. I only have prob 5 acres they are on bad. The rest of my 22 is either open or has pine, blackjack oak, and a few other species. I am planting trees I want. I just know these need to go.