by T Moore
(Beverly, MA)

bishop weed troubles 21946823

Variegated Bishops Goutweed

My garden is overrun with Bishop’s weed. I’ve been digging it up for years and it still returns. This year it returned with a vengeance. I know an herbicide is the best solution. But which one? I have plants that I need to dig up before I spray. How long do I have to wait before I can replant?

Comments for Bishop Weed troubles

May 31, 2021

by: Jacki Cammidge, Certified Horticulturist

There are several thugs that should never be sold as a groundcover, and Bishops Goutweed is one of them. As you’ve found, they’re impossible to get rid of.

When you go to dig out the plants you want to keep, you’ll have to remove all the soil to make sure you’re not just reinfecting the garden via small pieces of root.

For herbicide, you may have only one choice, Roundup. Even though I hate herbicides, there are times when you just have no other choice.

You can plant pretty much immediately after spraying, as the chemical goes into the plant via the leaves, and translocating to the roots where it kills the plant. The only way it kills is by direct contact with the leaves.

I’ve seen a method of using this type of herbicide where the plants you want to keep are covered with plastic pots, the area is sprayed, then the pots are removed. Don’t do this in full sun! The plastic gets really hot, and will kill the plants.

You may need to do more than one application, covering up the plants each time.