At times, controlling weeds using mechanical methods is the preferred method of weed control. However, care should be taken to avoid disturbing the soil or spreading weed seeds from machinery used in the process.
Disturbing the soil can increase the likelihood of weed seed germination. Native vegetation may also be damaged in the course of mechanical control. Prior to using mechanical means that involves native plants or weeds near waterways, please check legislative requirements.
In some cases it is possible to slash weeds using a tractor slasher or ride-on mower. Often this method is used where other favourable species will outgrow the slashed weeds. Some weed control contractors are trialling the use of steam to kill weeds. The steam is usually applied after the weeds have been slashed.
Bulldozers and chainsaws can be used on woody and tree weeds where they are pushed or felled and finally snigged (dragged away). These methods are only suitable in certain contexts, as they create high levels of soil and vegetation disturbance.
Shoots and seedlings also require follow up attention; however, this is not always possible in bushland settings.
Grading or scalping the top layer of soil is an effective method of removing a weed seedbank. As this method greatly disturbs the soil, it is best suited for areas that are to undergo complete rehabilitation.