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  1. #1
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    Best way to remove Yucca

    Anyone who has been stuck by a yucca while riding or while doing trailwork knows how much they suck... We've been trying a lot of different ways to remove them from the trail, and the best method we've seen is to remove it completely with a Rock Bar. A quick instructional video we put together shows how. Thought we'd share and allow others to enjoy the revenge.

    also available on the CORBAmtb.com web site.

    http://www.bioniconusa.com - Bionicon USA
    http://otbmbc.com - Over the Bars MTB Club
    http://corbamtb.com - CORBA

  2. #2
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    Is this easier/better than just using a shovel?

    Yuccas are definitely my enemy, as I have hundreds (thousands) on the 5 acre property I live on. Generally I use a shovel, but I've actually gone nuts with a backhoe, destroying yucca after yucca. They are amazingly resilient and tend to grow back to a good size after a few years.

    baker

  3. #3
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    If they're small, a shovel will work just fine. If they're big, it may be tough to get a shovel in and under them without getting poked. Plus, we don't usually use shovels in trailbuilding. We use McLeods and Polaskis, picks, saws, and rock bars.
    http://www.bioniconusa.com - Bionicon USA
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kanga
    If they're small, a shovel will work just fine. If they're big, it may be tough to get a shovel in and under them without getting poked. Plus, we don't usually use shovels in trailbuilding. We use McLeods and Polaskis, picks, saws, and rock bars.
    Makes sense. Also, we generally don't bring shovels for trail maintenance either.

    What about the backhoe, though?

    baker

  5. #5
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    I've had to remove large thistle plants, and found a pair of long handled loppers very useful. You use the loppers to cut off the lateral branches of the thistles so that you can get close enough to chop or cut the main stem.

    I'm also thinking loppers would be useful for trimming back yuccas that you might not want to remove entirely in places where they delineate the trail or are important in preventing erosion. Just trim off the spears on the trail side.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by HarryCallahan
    I'm also thinking loppers would be useful for trimming back yuccas that you might not want to remove entirely in places where they delineate the trail or are important in preventing erosion. Just trim off the spears on the trail side.
    That's how we used to do it, but CORBA's rationale now is that we'd much rather see a healthy yucca 6 feet from the trail, than half castrated yucca next to the trail. Also, if they're cut back before they're fully grown new leaves will grow in from the top and eventually fold down and back on to the trail where they'll be a problem again. Much better to remove them and be done, and better aesthetically with more natural looking trails.

    As far as erosion control, that's a good point and every situation is different. There are a few we've left and re-benched the trail to provide more space. There are also situations where we've pulled them up by the roots (when small) and replanted them to block trail cuts across switchbacks and for other reasons. Haven't yet had a chance to check on the survival of those, but we'll be back on that trail soon.
    http://www.bioniconusa.com - Bionicon USA
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    http://corbamtb.com - CORBA

  7. #7
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    Kanga,

    Thanks for the follow-up. That's a good video. Not much chance of a bench cut like the one pictured getting worn into a wider trail, even without the spiky plants.

    I noticed the comment to remove yuccas within 3' of the trail. Does that mean they max out at about that size - a 3' radius?

    It would be interesting to know if the transplanted yuccas "take". That's a good idea for keeping folks from cutting switchbacks.

    HC

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by HarryCallahan
    Kanga,

    Thanks for the follow-up. That's a good video. Not much chance of a bench cut like the one pictured getting worn into a wider trail, even without the spiky plants.

    I noticed the comment to remove yuccas within 3' of the trail. Does that mean they max out at about that size - a 3' radius?

    It would be interesting to know if the transplanted yuccas "take". That's a good idea for keeping folks from cutting switchbacks.

    HC
    Generally, they get to about a 5-6' diameter then grow their one flower, and die.

    I'll be checking on the transplanted ones (one month ago) on Sunday. I hope they take, as they're the perfect deterrent.
    http://www.bioniconusa.com - Bionicon USA
    http://otbmbc.com - Over the Bars MTB Club
    http://corbamtb.com - CORBA

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