Dealing with Bindweed

IDENTIFYING BINDWEED. Bindweed is a climbing vine. Normally, the first signs that you have bindweed will be thin thread-like vines that wrap themselves tightly around plants or other upward objects. Eventually, the bindweed vines will grow leaves, which are shaped much like an arrowhead. After the leaves appear, the bindweed vine will start growing flowers. Bindweed flowers are trumpet shaped and will be either white or pink. To see some images of bindweed, click here.

CONTROLLING & REMOVING BINDWEED. The only way to control it organically is to keep pulling it out. The best way is to loosen the soil with a fork and carefully pull out the entire rhizome, or root. Another popular method for controlling bindweed is to prune the vines back to the ground repeatedly, whenever they appear. Take a pair of scissors or shears and snip the bindweed vine off at ground level. Watch the location carefully and cut the vine back again when it appears. Both methods force the bindweed plant to use up its energy reservoirs in its roots, which will eventually kill it.

After either digging or cutting, you need to put the roots and runners into the black plastic bag that is outside the tool shed on the highway side and leave the plastic bag outside the shed for others to use. Do not put them into the compost or they will continue spreading throughout the gardens (the seeds can live 50 years!). Once the plastic bag is full someone will take it to the dump.