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The Root Talon

The Root Talon is an inexpensive, lightweight alternative to the Weed Wrench. It is a tool shaped like a pick-axe, but with a specialized fork and gripping flange that will let you grab onto plant stems and pull them out of the ground. This will not give you the maximum pulling strength of a Weed Wrench, but if you have ever tried hiking through a tangled forest with your arms filled with heavy tools, the Root Talon looks pretty attractive! The handle of the Root Talon is made of fiberglass, and seems durable.

I have used the Root Talon several times, and it is a good tool. It is very effective against shallow rooted plants like various annual mustards, or other herbs which have sturdy but flexible stems. It is also works well against sapling trees and shrubs (less than 3cm in diameter) like Ailanthus (tree of Heaven)--although this plant is likely to resprout--and Sesbania. Its designer created it with buckthorn (Rhamnus) in mind. Buckthorn is often shallow rooted, so the Root Talon may be ideal for this purpose. (Soil disturbance may result in seeds sprouting, so watch the area after you use the Root Talon.) I would not use this against deep-rooted trees like tamarisk because their brittle roots snap, then quickly resprout. This is not a good device for spiny plants since you have to wrap the stem into a crook on the tool, and even the best of gloves cannot defend you completely from thistle spines.

Position the Talon...
...pull the handle...
...lever out the plant!

The new “Professional Grade” Root Talon is available “Factory Direct” for $54.95 plus $15.00 shipping (MN residents add 7.25% sales tax).

For more information please visit www.roottalon.com or contact jearling@roottalon.com

The Root Talon is made in the U.S.A

The Root Talon
P.O. Box 216
Long Lake, MN 55356

Tel. 612-963-3372

Updated January 2005
©The Nature Conservancy, 2000