to prune or not to prune?

my lovely (!!) neighbours have put weedkiller on my ceanothus (and other plants too) as part of an ongoing hate campaign.  Luckily it's just on the leaves of the ceanothus but i'm wondering whether to prune out the dead now or leave it til spring?  i'm oop north in yorkshire and the ceanothus is quite exposed...advice please


  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 10,641

    It depends on the weedkiller.  If it's systemic you need to wash it off or prune it off immediately after spraying to prevent it getting to the roots and killing the whole plant.

    Either way, I would take photos of all the dead or damaged plants and then prune out the dead wood and maybe erect a fleece or net wind break around the ceanothus to protect it from biting winter winds.   Give it some bonemeal lightly forked around its base to help encourage roots over the winter.

    Get in touch with your local council's community welfare officer about the problem with your neighbours to see if they can mediate or issue warnings and, maybe the police too.  Wilfully damaging other people's property is a criminal offence.

    The Vendée, France
  • apologies for my late reply to your reply!! thanks for your answer.

    it can't be a systemic weedkiller as only the parts the weedkiller touched have died back but i will follow your advice and fingers crossed for next spring!

    and yes, the local policing team are aware of the problems i'm having but it's my word against the neighbours, i didn't see them do anything and, despite me hearing neighbours talking about putting weedkiller on, it's not proof enough!.

  • sorry to hear you have such nasty neighbours,it is a problem when these things occur,hope it gets resolved soon.

  • thanks for your sympathy flowering rose.  i'm actually looking at moving to get away from them, which is a shame as i've lived in my house for 15 years now and two of my children have grown up here..............image



  • try spraying with washing up liquid and water - although this may not work, it is surprising what simple soapy water will do to modern day chemicals - worth a go. Like you said, I would never consider cutting back ceanothus at this time of year - especially if exposed. Sounds like horrid neighbours, madness!

  • thanks milfordchris, i'll try anything to save it as my ceanothus has flowers for 10 months of the year and the bees adore it in the summer months!

    and don't get me started on the neighbours, the weedkiller is the tip of the iceberg!!

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