Ground Elder Eradication
At this time of year I find keeping on top of weeds a constant challenge.
In my garden, I seem to have certain flower beds that are susceptible to certain weeds, and the bane of my life in a particular bed is ground elder. Fortunately this particular flower bed used to have a pond in the middle which was surrounded by a low brick wall. The previous owners filled the pond in, and replanted it, and the ground elder seems to be trapped in this area, the brick wall acting as a barrier so it can’t spread to the other beds.
Characterised by apple-green, lobed leaves and flat heads of cream-white flowers in summer, ground elder spreads rapidly. What makes it even more difficult to eradicate is it can creep between cultivated plants. It creates large clumps of foliage that obscure and smother smaller plants. Ground elder dies down below ground in winter, which means it’s difficult to spot when cultivating the soil. However, it’s capable of re-growing from only small fragments of root, making it a particularly virulent plant.This vigorous, spreading perennial is rampant, growing over cultivated plants and making them compete for light, water and nutrients. There are two options to try and remove it, but from my experience total eradication is probably impossible!
In existing flowerbeds, it’s best tackled by digging up the cultivated plants and washing their roots to tease out the cream-white roots of ground elder. Regular cutting of the foliage, just below ground level with a hoe will gradually weaken the plant, but this needs to be done every 7-10 days, as soon as regrowth appears. Alternatively, fork through the soil every 10 to 14 days, removing every piece of ground elder root that’s found.
Apply systemic weedkiller to foliage as soon as it appears in spring. A systemic weedkiller works by working its way through the weeds system starting at the point of contact (leaf) down through the stem to the roots to ensure the plant is poisoned thoroughly. Apply throughout the growing season at four-to-six week intervals, or as soon as any re-growth appears. The weedkiller that I usually use for this job is Roundup. It comes in many concentrates, containers and sizes, and I noticed that this year they have introduced it in gel formula making application to specific plants easier. As an alternative to my local garden centre, I also use Greenfingers, an online gardening website to buy various garden supplies.
How do you eradicate weeds .. by removing them by hand, or treating them with weed killer?
Leave a Comment!
Community Terms & Conditions
These content standards apply to any and all material which you contribute to our site (contributions), and to any interactive services associated with it.
You must comply with the spirit of the following standards as well as the letter. The standards apply to each part of any contribution as well as to its whole.
be accurate (where they state facts); be genuinely held (where they state opinions); and comply with applicable law in the UK and in any country from which they are posted.
Contributions must not:
contain any material which is defamatory of any person; or contain any material which is obscene, offensive, hateful or inflammatory; or promote sexually explicit material; or promote violence; promote discrimination based on race, sex, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or age; or infringe any copyright, database right or trade mark of any other person; or be likely to deceive any person; or be made in breach of any legal duty owed to a third party, such as a contractual duty or a duty of confidence; or promote any illegal activity; or be threatening, abuse or invade another’s privacy, or cause annoyance, inconvenience or needless anxiety; or be likely to harass, upset, embarrass, alarm or annoy any other person; or be used to impersonate any person, or to misrepresent your identity or affiliation with any person; or give the impression that they emanate from us, if this is not the case; or advocate, promote or assist any unlawful act such as (by way of example only) copyright infringement or computer misuse.
Nurturing a safe environment
Our Silversurfers community is designed to foster friendships, based on trust, honesty, integrity and loyalty and is underpinned by these values.
We don't tolerate swearing, and reserve the right to remove any posts which we feel may offend others... let's keep it friendly!