Growing and Containing Rampant Spreaders

What do you do when you fall in love with a plant but you know it spreads and could take over your entire garden?

Contain it!

This could be as easy as planting it in its own container. Ceramic, metal or resin pots certainly put a punch of color in a corner, on a deck or by the front entrance. They’re also great for adding plant height and focal points in the garden.

Perhaps a touch of whimsy would add pizzazz to your garden while controlling your marauder. Picture your potential runaway planted in a pot, “sitting” in a hole cut in the seat of a painted and weather-sealed wooden chair. This creates a colorful garden focal point, elevates your beauty and keeps it from spreading.

If you want the potential invader in the ground, ask us for specific recommendations for the plant that you are considering before planting. Different plants require different control measures. Mowing to eliminate new growth controls some plants. Herbicide application can have an effect on others. Some plants, like bamboo, don’t give in easily to control methods. No, these require a Well Designed Plan (see below), which includes building a trench to prevent the roots from going AWOL.

A Well-Designed Plan to Contain Vigorous “Runners”

  • Determine where you would like to plant.
  • Dig a trench 28 inches deep along the boundary of the planting area that you wish to contain.
  • Line this trench with a high-density polyethylene liner leaving 2 inches of the liner above the soil line.
  • Overlap end by at least 6 inches to that the plant root cannot escape through the opening.
  • Backfill.
  • Plant.
  • Periodically, check the edges of the trench liner to be sure the roots don’t try to climb over the barrier. If they are, be ruthless and cut them back.

Now, sit back and enjoy your newly contained friend.

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