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One of my not so minor goals in life has been to eradicate all of the bind-weed in my yard. This kudzu in miniature has been a serious bane to the development of a yard I would like to sit in. This afternoon, I finally figured out where my bees were getting a large portion of their pollen. They where all over the bind-weed flowers in my yard. I don't know if I am ready for a paradigm shift of this magnitude. Has anyone else had similar experiences when they first started keeping bees?
 

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One of my not so minor goals in life has been to eradicate all of the bind-weed in my yard. This kudzu in miniature has been a serious bane to the development of a yard I would like to sit in. This afternoon, I finally figured out where my bees were getting a large portion of their pollen. They where all over the bind-weed flowers in my yard. I don't know if I am ready for a paradigm shift of this magnitude. Has anyone else had similar experiences when they first started keeping bees?
If it's the same bind weed we have up here, it needs to go. Unwrap it from what is on and paint it with round-up. Then plant another good plant for your bees. My round-up comment will most likely catch me "you know what", but this plant needs to go. You don't need to live in a jungle to have bees.
 

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The bind weed is so bad that it grows straight on the ground over the drain field. There is no chance that I will ever let it grow on my junipers. I have only made some progress each year by mowing and encouraging the bermuda grass to grow over the drain field. Bermuda is the only grass that I know that will choke out bind weed. It is still too cool for the bermuda to green up. I still have about two more weeks before I add mowing to the mix of things to do at home. Putting on the roof is the greatest priority right now.

Thanks Dan for the reality check.
 

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Get rid of the bind weed, bees fly a couple miles for forage. What's in your yard will not sustain them, it's just the proverbial drop in the bucket that they forage.
 

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Kill it. Let it live somewhere else than your yard. The bees will there. If you don't kill it now it can kill everything else. Knew an old guy that made a round-up diesel mix and used that. Bird will spread it.
 

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Evil was the word that popped into mind when I saw the 1st post of this thread. I fought it for 7 years in the Adirondacks, never eradicating it but only keeping it from taking over my garden. Any benefits my bees might get from it would not make me think for a second about allowing it to grow.

As for confining it, with roots that can go up to 40' into the ground, you will never keep it in one spot.

Evil!

Wayne
 

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My grandfather started farming the family farm in the thirties. He fought a patch of bindweed along with others for 50 plus years with tillage and 2-4D, and the patches only got bigger. When my uncle took over the farm he put a ground sterilant down, and stopped all growth for 10-15 years. He and I were driving by one spring and we noticed it was green. When we went over to look it was covered with bindweed. There are ag chemicals now that will do a better job, but it is a very hard weed to get control of. If you do nothing it will totally take over. The seed is viable for at least 25 years.
Dave
 

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I don't think bind weed is a big problem up here but why doesn't constant tilling work? It seems to be effective for the weeds I battle.
 

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Constant tilling just makes the plant spread. I think the Greeks got the ideal of a hydra from bind weed.
 

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I hear that all the time and it is not my experience. Tilling makes the plant spread. Constant tilling get rid of it. Every 5 to 7 days you till the ground and the shoots that start over get baked when you bring them to the surface. You can also till and 4 days later pull the shoots by hand. They come out of the ground easily because they don't have big long roots anymore.
 

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I don't know how bee friendly it is but if you want a cheaper chemical then round up you can use Pronto's Big N Tuff. This stuff works just as good and is way cheaper. I bought a 5 gallon jug and will probably get 3 years out of it if not 4. I have used it for two years so far but unlike 2-4-D it will kill every thing not just broad leaf so be careful on use. You can get it at tractor supply or any other implement/farm store.
 

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Constant tilling just makes the plant spread.
True, any Ag station will confirm that, as will anyone that actually has fought bindweed. Each piece of a bindweed rhizome can spread horizontally 10' in a single season.

Black plastic works well if you want to look at a yard covered by black plastic for several years.

Wayne
 

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Each piece of a bindweed rhizome can spread horizontally 10' in a single season.
Wayne
Yes, in a season but not in 4 or 5 days. In 4 or 5 days it will shoot up and tell you where those rhizomes are. You can either pull them out or keep tilling. You can't till and plant. You have to till, and till and till. UNTIL, there is no more. Nothing in the plant world can survive constant tilling if it grows in the ground. Ag stations deal with typical farming and their solution is always chemical.
 

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Tilling constantly for the several years required will kill any living plant and in the process destroy the microbial life and structure of the soil. It will also make the original poster's yard into a desert, which would be highly problematic, one might think. As I have gardened and farmed organically for the past 40 years and battled bindweed for 6 years in an Adirondack garden, I know (not imagine) that repeated cultivation and pulling hardly eradicates the stuff, only beats it back for a while. I did this for years to keep it in check in a quarter acre garden and the stuff returned as soon as I moved. Of course, it grew in all the neighboring properties so it was only a matter of time.

Birds, bits of roots on a tiller blade, wind and any piece of root a couple inches long that isn't immediately brought to the surface and completely dried produces a new plant. Those roots 20' down are difficult to kill and impossible to pull up. The seeds can remain viable in the soil for up to 50 years. Imagining it away doesn't work.

ATTRA, Organic Gardening Magazine and many others writing for the organic & sustainable viewpoint, describe the horrors of this plant and the difficulty of controlling it. They are not controlled by the chemical companies. Perhaps they just lack your imagination.

Wayne
 

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Discussion Starter #18
It makes me feel better to know that I am not the only person that hates this plant. Luckily it is confined to the drain field since it is pretty arid around here. That is the only spot with good moisture.
 

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There is also a bindweed mite that I've only heard about in passing after moving away from the bindweed patch. Maybe that is something worth looking into in conjunction with pulling, etc.

Wayne
 
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