Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show: Renovating weedy groundcovers
What to do when the weeds are winning? Renovate!
Dig up those great plants, “heel” them into another area, use a total vegetation killer to rid your bed of those weeds and then replant.
Heeling in your plants simply means that you dig a trench in an unplanted area and give your plants a temporary home while you renovate. You could also leave them in pots buried in the ground. That is, if you have enough. Note: they can become root bound if in the pot too long.
The idea is to give them a fighting chance by saving your good plants and knocking out those pesky weeds. You’ll see this often in nurseries. In fact, most trees they have for sale are “heeled in”. It’s also like the Minnesota Tip Method for roses.
Read the label directions on the chemical you choose to know when you can start replanting. Round Up is probably the most widely known total vegetation killer. You can also use heavy cardboard laid on the area and held down with stones over the winter. That will kill those weeds! Some Master Gardeners I know have used old carpet. They didn’t seem concerned about any chemicals from the carpet. Well, considering we lay on it, I don’t know why that would be a major issue.