Horse tail blues

Asked May 29, 2018, 1:52 PM EDT

We have a bad case of horse tail overrunning our 1/2 acre wildflower hill and choking out everything else. We are also now seeing it erupt in our lawn and other flower beds. Help! How do we get rid of it? Charlie Willmott 1128 Valley View Ave. Petoskey, MI 49770 c. 703-341-7817

Emmet County Michigan

1 Response


We have had several horsetail questions this season, already, so you aren’t alone. Here is an earlier response that applies to your situation, too-

“There is no quick or easy method in eradicating horsetail (Equisetum arvense). There are several herbicides suggested by various sources but they will most likely require a persistent routine of application over a few years. Eliminating moisture will help as well as shading. Solarization (cooking the weeds under plastic) is another option which may take more than a year. Consistent mowing can also help by reducing the energy stores to the roots. Below are some links that may help. Note that some of the herbicides may not be available in Michigan or without a applicator license. Be sure to read the label prior to using any herbicides and follow the label.


I hope this is helpful, Barry Andersen Master Gardener Volunteer, Advanced”

If you decide to hire professionals, and so have professional-grade chemicals applied, you can find licensed applicators here-,4610,7-125-1569_2459-11993--,00.html

You will still need to monitor, knock down sprouts, and apply multiple applications over 2-3 years or more to get control of horsetail. Sorry for the disappointing news. Thanks for using our service.