- Nov 24, 2007
- Reaction score
- Ontario, Canada
I would not trust solarization to kill all of it, no. However it will put a reasonable dent in the root population, so it probably IS worth doing. I would then follow up with a Year (or more) Of Darkness, so that the remaining bits of root exhaust themselves trying to regrow into plants.KayRI said:Thanks for all the replies. Do you think you actually have to solarize it? Or can you just cover it with cardboard and mulch over the top? If you put blacK plastic down, could you mulch over the top of that? or do you think it is the heat that would eventually get all 4 billion pieces of the root?
Mulch over black plastic has to be quite thick and a heavy material, in my experience, or it will all wash off in a rainstorm. Landscape fabric does not have that problem, but bindweed can sometimes grow thru it, even with a mulch on top. Cardboard is somewhere in between the two. If you use cardboard, based on my experience (and I currently have probably about 400 sq feet under cardboard-and-mulch at various places in the yard!) I would suggest using as large pieces as possible, overlapping them WELL at seams, mulching the heck out of it, and then laying some heavier objects around the edges and at strategic points in the middle (I use trimmed tree branches, and some old chainlink fence posts with concrete on the end that I don't have the energy to haul off to somewhere less conspicuous <g>).
Dig the perennials back out, give them to your worst enemies unless you are *sure* you have extracted all the bindweed out of them (if you have any really beloved specimens, try propagating them from cuttings), solarize the bed and then smother it in darkness for at least a year no kidding. THEN you can (carefully) replant, preferably leaving as much of the smothering-cover in place as possible, even though it means you will have little spreading and no reseeding of your perennials for some years.I acutally have converted part of where it is to a perrential garden bed and I think it is worse because it hides its roots among the roots of the perrenials. Evil weed that it is.
I know this sounds radical and time-consuming, but consider that really your only alternative is to spend YOUR ENTIRE LIFETIME battling bindweed every week of every year.
Pat, who HAS largely conquered the bindweed along the front of the house by means of the perpetual darkness strategy (and repeated weeding in planting holes and where bindweed came thru the cover), and that's *without* solarization, which I avoided b/c of not wanting to kill some shrub roots