Gardening Life

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How to rid invasive green goutweed

How do I prevent green goutweed from speading?

**FULL QUESTION** Dear *Gardening Life*, I have green goutweed invading from my neighbours backyard and moving into my lawn (and my raspberry patch and composter!). I am slowly eliminating lawn but wonder how to control the goutweed until then. Can I simply lay several layers of wet newspaper and gardening cloth on top of goutweed-infested grass and build a raised bed without the goutweed coming up through it? *—Linda Cullum*

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**FULL ANSWER** Linda, Smothering is the best treatment for this invasive plant. Thick layers of newspaper (six or seven sections, not pages, thick) topped with landscape fabric should do the trick under a raised bed. However, the goutweed could easily spring up beyond the raised beds so extend the treatment over the whole area. If you want to plant that space eventually, I would omit the landscape fabric and top the newspaper with three to four inches of mulch. Leave in place over winter if possible and keep an eagle eye out next spring for any sign of goutweed. If you see it, repeat the covering process until you are sure it is eliminated, then do your planting. Good luck! *—Karen York, Botanical Editor* Other questions recently answered by the GL team: Planting under maple trees Discouraging cats from your garden Hints for growing sweet bell peppers Buying exotic plants in Toronto Preventing brown leaf spot Information on peony-flowered poppies Tips for growing tulips and lilies When to move irises Maintaining blue spruces The best way to grow gunneras Getting rid of sawfly larvae on roses Eliminating earwigs from clematis flowers Beetle damage to spruce trees Removing whiteflies from hibiscus leaves Building a cactus garden Maintaining redbud trees Maintaining Boston ivy growth Using black walnut leaves for mulch Stopping powdery mildew on maples Planting trees near a swale Growing on a septic field How to battle weeds between flagstone and alternative options Mysterious orange powder on the lawn What to do with end-of-season potatoes on the vine How to control Japanese knotweed What to grow in a dry area The proper way to plant astrantia What is the star flower and how do I manage it? How do I eliminate my ant problem? Preventing red beetles from attacking lilies Vine types to grow on a new pergola Maintaining purple fountain grass Keeping bougainvilllea healthy throughout the winer

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