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Field Bindweed Control for Yard and Garden

Updated July 08, 2019
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Gared Shaffer

SDSU Extension Weeds Field Specialist

a green, vine-like plant with white flowers growing across a patch of brown, sandy soil.

Most summers the most problematic weed in gardens and yards is field bindweed. It is a perennial species that develops an extensive root system making it difficult to control. Any management program may take several years. The plant is most vulnerable in the fall after the first frost, but it can be suppressed and controlled during the growing season.

In gardens, perennial species can be a big problem, such as field bindweed. The only good spot treatment would be a glyphosate product at flowering or late fall, being careful not to spray garden plants. Most gardeners don’t want to use non-organic chemicals in their garden. Another option would be to use organic herbicides such as vinegar. For more information on organic herbicides, see the article, “Organic Herbicides.”

Tilling is not a good option in the garden, because it stirs up the soil and spreads weed seed and rhizomes. This then helps weeds later on, instead of hindering or controlling them. The only other option would be to pull them out by hand and then use a ground cover of grass clippings (weed free), wood chips or fabric (plastic or cloth) to suppress them.

In a yard the best chemical control measures are products that contain 2,4D+dicamba+MCPP in a pre-mix, like Weed-B-Gone Max, Bayer Advanced, Trimec, Weed Stop and others. Mowing is not an effective tool against field bindweed, but hand pulling can be. If hand pulling is done, make sure the root system is taken out with the above ground growth. This is more effective in porous soil or wetter soils.