Mare's / Horse Tail

About Mare's Tail / Horsetail

The name "horsetail" is derived from the Latin Equisetum which translates as equus, meaning horse and seta which means bristle or hair. 

Horsetail is also known as marestail, mare’s-tail or Hippuris vulgaris and is an aquatic weed. Horsetail is a slender, tall weed commonly found in ponds or slow-flowing streams.

Where does Horse Tail grow? 

Horsetail prefers moist areas but is increasingly found on waste ground, in gardens and on non-cropped areas. It has a thick, silica-rich outer layer and small needle-like leaves. This can make it difficult to get sufficient spray into the plant to kill horse tail.

Is marestail/ horsetail harmful?

Horsetail is a poisonous weed if consumed raw due to the heavy content of silica in the weed. Grazing animals will usually avoid marestail but it can become more palatable as it dies.

Kill Mares Tail/ Kill Horse Tail

Repeated cutting will weaken the rhizomes in Horse Tail but is generally ineffective on its own in killing horse tail as it has a deep and spreading root system. Cultural control methods like digging can often make the problem worse because each broken root fragment can develop into a new plant by itself - multiplying the problem.

Treating horsetail with Kurtail Gold

Kurtail Gold is a total weedkiller and will kill horsetail as well as weeds and grass in about 7-10 days. You may also need successive treatment to control new plants that grow from untreated roots.

Kurtail Gold is no longer available for sale. A replacement is coming soon - to keep updated sign here.
If you need to tackle marestail / horsetail in the meantime - SBK Brushwood Killer & Kplus Water Conditioner will give some level of control.

Sprayed horsetail usually takes 1-2 weeks to look dead, but it will take longer to rot down and disappear so be patient. Once it is is black and dead it may be raked/ or cleared away. If you are looking to kill mares tail in a paddock it will eventually rot down and disappear. Then it is safe to graze on and bale for hay. Although the method of mares tail eradication sounds dramatic, there are few alternative chemicals that can reliably control horsetail in grassland.

You can use a tractor or knapsack to apply Kurtail Gold and you can re-plant immediately after treatment on all soils except sands, which require 3 days.  There is no chemical effect on the soil and no residual effect from the treatment.

Please see our table below for information on Kurtail Gold or visit the Kurtail Product Listing here:

For more advice please call us on 0800 032 6262 or email us

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Products for Treating Horse Tail Weed/ Mares Tail Weed

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