Artist teaches how to change invasive Japanese knotweed into crafting material

When Albert Pantone operates out of paper, he just heads to the nearest stand of invasive Japanese knotweed.

“We usually consider of trees when it will come to paper, but anything with fibers can be employed to make paper,” reported Pantone, owner of Knot Just Weeds in Braddock. “You can even use the fibers from dryer sheets to make it!”

On July 11, Pantone will be joined in Murrysville by associates of ReImagine Turtle Creek to existing “Crafting with Invasive Species,” wherever he will demonstrate individuals how to use knotweed and create paper.

Pantone, who owns and operates Knot Just Weeds at an out of doors studio, stated the ideal time to harvest knotweed is among the close of Could and early July.

“You want to harvest stalks about the diameter of your finger,” he reported. “I cut off all the facet branches, strip the leaves, slice the stalks into about one or one-and-a-half-inch pieces, then I cook them down in a simple borax cleaning soap alternative, which cooks anything out except the fibers.”

And even though a little batch can be pounded with a mallet as the following step in the method, Pantone reported he generally sends his to a commercial paper producer to be processed in a equipment referred to as a beater.

From there it is shaped into paper, while not the variety you get in thoroughly clean, bleached-white reams from the office environment-offer shop.

“You can see the fibers in it, and it has a mild brown to reddish brown coloration,” Pantone stated. “And if you want a piece of ‘art’ paper with huge chunks of fiber all all through, you can do it that way as well.”

And if generating paper is not your thing, the very same Japanese knotweed can go from the artwork studio to the kitchen area – it’s edible and preferences like a mixture of lemon and rhubarb.

“You just have to know where you are harvesting it, to make guaranteed it’s free of charge of chemical substances or weighty metals,” Pantone mentioned. “And in the slide, you can make a seriously tasty late-September honey with the minor white bouquets that bloom on it.”

In addition to knotweed paper-building, Rick Duncan of the Penn Hills Shade Tree Fee will discuss attempts to eradicate knotweed in Pittsburgh’s jap suburbs.

As an invasive species, knotweed has no purely natural inhibitors and can aggressively establish itself alongside moist parts like riverbanks and roadsides, as very well as choke out indigenous vegetation, improve via the basis of properties, clog waterways and harm infrastructure.

The July 11 application will be at 5:30 p.m. at the Roberts Trailhead, 4301 William Penn Highway in Murrysville. There is no price to attend. For more, or to signal up to show up at, see

Patrick Varine is a Tribune-Evaluation staff members writer. You can speak to Patrick at 724-850-2862, [email protected] or by means of Twitter .