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Bindweed Roots


Ive recently brought a property and the back garden was totally paved. On lifting the paving slabs. I discovered  they were not cemented in, just placed on the top of the soil. Ive now exposed the biggest bindwind city that Ive ever see - just a mass of roots - no plants .. just a mass of roots


With no plants in the garden as such, I was going to apply weed killer, but all the ones Ive seen say apply to leaves - I dont have leaves only roots, and I dont really want to grow into plants.


Can anyone suggest the best way of getting rid of the roots ?




  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 27,150

    If you want to use weedkiller you'll have to let them develop leaves. Quite a lot of leaves if the weedkiller is to be effective.

    There isn't an easy answer to bindweed but with an otherwise empty garden you stand more chance than most of us. But make sure it is empty, gardens can look empty at this time of year then everything starts growing at once

    In the sticks near Peterborough
  • WintersongWintersong Posts: 2,436

    If you've got roots, you'll get leaves. They will start growing in 2-4wks depending on where you live in the country.

    I've had and still have issues with bindweed. You can dig out root that is shallow and if your soil will release it easily. I have sandy soil and enough experience to get most root out. Obviously, with less root, there's less nuisance weed about but please please don't do this if you are not experienced. One tiny piece makes a whole new vigorous plantimage

    I'm still tackling bindweed in my front garden and I know from experience last year that two sprays at intervals during the growing season is NOT enough. Some say that spraying while the plant is in flower Is best but it must be done consistently for an entire year, this weed doesn't give up the fight.

    One tip is if you have to spray near other plants or nextdoor neighbours: I use a bucket or large plant pot with the bottom cut off, pulling the bindweed into it, and spraying inside the bucket. then I leave the bucket in situ and return when all top growth is dead.

    Good luck!

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,046

    please don't be tempted to dig it up. You'll be wasting your time.

    Glyphosate is the only sensible solution. You can insert canes if it's growing through other plants , let it climb up the canes and you can then use the Roundup gel without touching other plants.

  • Does the same apply to ground elder?

  • barry islandbarry island Posts: 1,667

    Dig the roots out and compost them in a container in complete darkness it might take a couple of years to kill the roots completly but they will die eventually. When the remaining roots come into leaf apply glyphosate as recommended.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 83,787

    In my experience there's no point in digging the roots out and then spraying what remains - that's doing the job twice. 

    Just wait until the leaves are growing actively and spray them with glyphosate THEN WAIT UNTIL THE LEAVES GO BROWN AND DIE before digging the bindweed up.  If you do it too soon the roots will still be alive and every little bit that gets left behind will grow into a new plant.

    You might need to do the job a couple of times, but you will get rid of it by doing the above - we did - and the bindweed had reached the upstairs windowsills when we moved in!

    You will probably find that a nearby garden has bindweed and it's spreading via your boundary, so each spring keep your eyes open for the telltale heartshaped leaves around your fence and spray them with glyphosate when they appear.

    Good luck image

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • barry islandbarry island Posts: 1,667

    But if the roots are laying on the top you might as well remove them they will come up easily then there will be less to spray, the spray won't kill all the roots in one go so the more that you remove the quicker the job will be done in the long run. Obviously if removing the roots results in lots of broken roots then leave them where they are but in my experience the roots laying on the surface should lift out quite easily. good luck.

  • If you do dig any roots up, burn or bin, don't compost.

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