Getting Rid of Weeds in a Rose Garden?

How can I get rid of birch weeds in my rose garden without harming the roses? I keep pulling and pulling, but I can not seem to keep up with them at all. They are taking over and I don't want to harm my other plants.


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Gold Post Medal for All Time! 677 Posts
September 14, 20170 found this helpful

Put some mulch down. This will smother the weeds and prevent new ones

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Silver Post Medal for All Time! 433 Posts
September 15, 20171 found this helpful

Put some alcohol in a spray bottle with equal parts water and alcohol. Spray weeds only.

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Gold Feedback Medal for All Time! 949 Feedbacks
September 15, 20171 found this helpful

Weeds like this are very difficult to eradicate as you cannot reach the main roots. Any type of spray will kill your rose bushes or severely stunt them.


Step 1
It seems like mulch would smoother/kill them but in reality determined "weeds" like this will grow right through even 4 or 5 inches of any kind of mulch.

Step 2
Also, these weeds will grow close to your bushes and it is not a good idea to cover the ground with mulch around or close to the shank of your bush.

Step 3
Here is what I have done with problem weeds that love the area around my plants and just will not die.

Step 4
Pick a nice sunny day (no rain in forecast) and gather your killing supplies.

Step 5
A stool to sit on or nice pads for your knees. A cup of good weed killer - mixed to correct strength. A small dollar store paint brush (1/4" is good) (regular or foam). Several rags (for clean-up in case of a spill). A hose hooked up in case you make a mistake and need to flood the area with water.


Step 6
Start in an area away from your rose bushes. Dip the paint brush in weed killer and and paint the weed top to bottom but try not to spill any killer on the ground.

Step 7
I have also used a small rag (wear nurses gloves) instead of a brush and just wiped the weed from bottom to top.

Step 8
Do not do more than 5 or 6 weeds in one small section and move to another area to repeat the process.

Step 9
This is a slow and tedious process but it has worked for me and did not harm my plants. I think you may try this as it is easier than trying to kill/pull weeds up by hand.

Step 10
Do a few areas (away from the bushes) and wait a few days to see what progress has been made.

Step 11
If it seems to be doing the job then you can move a little closer to the bushes but not too much at one time as you do not want to put too much killer in one location.


Step 12
Never go very close to the shank of your rose bush. You can keep cutting these close weeds very short or into the ground for a while and it will slow them down.

Step 13
I then put several layers of newspaper around the shank of my bushes as water will go through but it slows weed growth. (Several layers = 2 inches or more).

Step 14
After you get some of the weeds gone you can cut the rest to beneath the ground, cover the area with newspaper (I do not recommend landscape fabric) and several inches of mulch.

This is a lot of work but I love my 6 to 10 year old plants and feel good when I can see progress.

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