Whilst it is fairly easy to keep our own garden under control, many of us have neighbours who may not be as interested in gardening as we are.  This can lead to unwanted plants making their way across the boundary.  Some plants are ornamental even if they are unwanted, like the ivy that has come through from next door.

Look carefully and you can see bindweed in the Kilmarnock Willow

Look carefully and you can see bindweed twining through the Kilmarnock Willow

However, over the last few years, the ivy has been joined by that most pernicious of weeds – field bindweed (Convolvulus arvensis).  Unlike the more garden worthy morning glories, bindweed can quickly take over a garden and so has to be dealt with whenever you see it.  It twines itself around existing plants and is a real pain.  The best way to get rid of it is to dig and dig and dig – its roots can go down 5 meters and every little bit of root that is left in the ground can turn into a new plant!  Digging isn’t an option for me at the moment, I want to keep the border in tact.  So, I just pull out every bit I see and put it straight into the council’s green waste bags.  I make sure that not even a single leaf is dropped on the ground or in contact with any of my gardening tools, such as my weeding trug.  Not a single piece of this plant is going to have a hope of regrowth in my garden!

I have to be especially careful if the dogs are out in the garden with me when I pull bindweed.  Anya still thinks that plants are a very exciting toy when they are in my hands, so she is learning fast that they are mine and I will not let her grab them from me!

I hope you never have to cope with bindweed, it is a never ending battle, but one that has to be fought.