Driving through Minishant last week out of the corner of my eye I thought I spotted some Giant hogweed growing at the base of a hedge. Sure enough after a quck u-turn I was able to confirm that is was the dreaded weed. This was in an area well away from any known plants but there are a multitude of ways in which seeds could have been transported along the roadside, e.g. roadside verge cutting machines, mud on vehicle tyres, topsoil spreading etc. Of course this location is part of the Doon, a catchment which at present is almost entirely free of hogweed.
There were only about 4 or 5 plants and how they got there is a mystery? However, soon they will be no more as we took advantage of being in the locality today to give them a quick spray.
We also noted a few other roadside plants on the A77 Ayr bypass and a bigger stand away from the river close to the River Ayr stepping stones. Hopefully if we get a dry evening this week we will be able to deal with them. We will continue to find mature, unsprayed, hogweed stands for a while unfortunately but the distinctive white flat flowerheads are definitely becoming a rarer sight in Ayrshire.