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Disposing of ground elder once dug out

Hello everyone,

i have a bed of ground elder I intend to (or attempt) to dig out. Whilst I’ve read all the advice of how to get rid of it, nowhere can I find out what I do with it after I’ve dug it out. Do I bag it and take it to the tip, compost it (surely unwise!) or burn it? 


  • ButtercupdaysButtercupdays Posts: 4,354
    I bag the roots and leave the bags in an out of the way corner. They rot down eventually and can then be used as compost.
    If I threw out all the pernicious weeds I'd end up with no soil! But I am lucky to have plenty of corners to put the bags.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 82,737
    edited April 2018
    Or depending on how much you have you can leave it all to rot down in a bucket of water ... once it's just black slime it's well and truly dead ... as long as you've not let it seed. 

    Or if you have a large enough garden you can just pile it up and let it dry out and burn it along with dry twigs and other perennial weed roots ... we used to do that on the allotment ... then you've got a bit of potash to put into the runner bean trench.  

    If I had ground elder in this smallish garden then I'd put it in the council garden waste bin ... they promise me their composting process heats up enough to destroy perennial weeds ........ but I don't use their compost, just to be on the safe side ..........
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • I put mine in the green bin - again we're assured here that the council's composting process will kill it. There is a list of things you can't put in which doesn't include ground elder. I'm afraid I also wouldn't buy their "soil improver" though - partly because here they charge a stupid amount for it and partly because I would worry that people might have put things in which have been sprayed with undesirably things.
  • Thanks for the replies. I tried bagging up some knotweed a couple of years ago (not Japanese!) but it just sprouted again from the bag the following spring. But then as it was a dump bag and I hadnt covered it maybe that was the problem there? Assuming you have to seal the bags? Knotweed seems to be just as bad as ground elder to get rid of!
     The water solution sounds good at the moment as they’re still fresh in the ground and haven’t flowered yet. Could you use the water as a liquid feed afterwards?just doing that with some nettles.

  • FireFire Posts: 17,116
    Knotweed is a national security threat. Ground elder in just a PITA.
  • It’s common knotweed not Japanese knotweed luckily. I’ve only got three patches of it but it’s another one where a little bit of root left just sprouts again. 
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