The dreaded bindweed

debs64debs64 West Midlands, on the edge of the Black Country Posts: 1,662
Hi all, just cleared a raised bed and it’s heavily infested with bindweed roots. I am planting it up with some shrubs and biggish salvias and edging with alpines and thymes then mulching with bark and the plan is to hoe off the bindweed shoots as they come through and starve the roots. Not my usual style but needs must. 
Will this work do you think and how long will it take to kill all the roots? Any advice? Thanks 


  • SarSpudSarSpud Posts: 46
    I’d personally go through the raised bed as much as possible first to get as much root out as you can. I’m battling bind weed in quite a few places, pulling it when it when it appears seems to slowly be working. It’s definitely a long process.
    I’m not sure about the hoe and whether ‘chopped’ shoots left on the ground will root.
  • debs64debs64 West Midlands, on the edge of the Black Country Posts: 1,662
    I did remove a lot but there are thousands. Don’t worry I will hoe then pick up the bits I cut off, thinking a bucket of water is the way to go rather than into the green bin? Just a thought if I leave them in the bucket for a few weeks then strained off liquid could it be used as a liquid food? 
  • Hampshire_HogHampshire_Hog Hampshire Coast 100m from the seaPosts: 1,017
    edited 7 April
    You could also put in a cane as it comes up allow it to climb this then treat with a good systemic weed killer applied by a gloved hand is a bit unsightly but will ensure the roots are killed off.

    I'm not one that advocates the use of weed killers or poisons but at times needs must I'm afraid.

    "You don't stop gardening because you get old, you get old because you stop gardening." - The Hampshire Hog
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 23,677
    H.Hog's description is the usual treatment when it's in an awkward place,and the most efficient.
    Otherwise, it'll be a never ending problem once plants go in.
    And somewhere on the hill
    Inside the past we hear the bells
    Catching only parts of thoughts
    And fragments of ourselves
    Till we begin

  • Green MagpieGreen Magpie Posts: 776
    Bindweed roots can go very deep, and a section can resprout if left in the ground. Chopping them up just encourages them! Really, the only ways to get rid of it are either to apply glyphosate to the leaves or to dig up the roots, getting as much out of the ground as you can. Of course you shouldn't compost them yourself, but I think the green bin is OK, as commercial processing reaches a much higher temperature and kills most things. I have used the manual method in a couple of areas of the garden - it can take a few seasons but eventually you can get rid of it this way. You will develop an eye for it and spot the tiniest sign of regrowth at a hundred paces!
  • debs64debs64 West Midlands, on the edge of the Black Country Posts: 1,662
    Thanks magpie no way I can get rid of the roots and I don’t use weed killers so my options are limited I know. This is a rented house and previous tenants just let it all get completely overgrown but I am hopeful that with constant vigilance I can clear that bed! It’s only about 12foot by 3 foot so planning to do a bit each week and starve those roots. I will put the dustbin full of roots I have already removed into the green bin. Thankfully the other side of the garden is clear and there are just a few bits at the back, now it’s all clearer I can see what I am doing and it will be easier. 
  • TopbirdTopbird Posts: 4,551
    Hi Debs👋🙂

    I have managed to eradicate bindweed in a couple of spots with persistent weeding-at-the-first-sign method - but I did try to dig out the root rather than just hoeing them off.

    I think for this year you might be better planting less densely than you really want to so you can get in there with a hand fork as soon as bits start to show through. Perhaps also concentrate more on annuals this year so you can give the bed another really thorough going over in the autumn and next spring. With a bit of luck you'll have broken the back of the problem for next year and you can plant it up as you really want to.
    Heaven is ... sitting in the garden with a G&T and a cat while watching the sun go down
  • debs64debs64 West Midlands, on the edge of the Black Country Posts: 1,662
    Thanks Topbird I thought just a few shrubs would give a bit of colour and leave plenty of open soil to “get at”. The alpines are along the edge hoping they will spill over and cover the rather ugly bricks making up the bed. If I can keep it under control I will be happy. I will try digging out the roots as you suggest. As I said it’s only a small area and hubby likes weeding so between us I reckon we can beat that pesky bindweed! Will let you all know how I get on through the summer. 
  • NollieNollie Girona, Catalunya, Northen SpainPosts: 1,744
    Hi Debs, If you use a thin, long-bladed weed remover (don’t know its proper name but see photo) you can slide it down and around the shoots and remove a good length of the root without damaging surrounding planting. My bindweed goes really deep, into the cracks in the bedrock and its impossible to remove it all, but by using this tool as soon I I spot it emerging, I can mostly keep it in check during the growing season:

  • debs64debs64 West Midlands, on the edge of the Black Country Posts: 1,662
    Thanks for the heads up will look out for one of those. I may have to use weed killer but I will avoid it if at all possible I just hate the thought of ☠️ poison in my garden 
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