Ivy and Ground problems

I've got a very large garden with a very large ivy problem it's everywhere as is the ground elder. To give you an idea the grounds are on a grade two* lisited house in the woods. The grounds are well established in a English country garden manner so carpet spraying is not an option really. As they have flowers and plants for all seasons. Great weekly and all year garden.Any suggestions

You need to be a member of Landscape Juice Network to add comments!

Join Landscape Juice Network

Email me when people reply –


  • PRO

    hmm feels like a long winter on hands and knees 

  • PRO

    Looks like it might be the variegated variety?

    This is from the RHS site:


    As its rhizomes are close to the surface of the soil, it is possible to reduce infestations of ground elder by removing it carefully with a garden fork. However, eradicating it completely needs vigilance as the smallest portion of root left in the soil will result in a new plant growing. 

    Non-chemical control

    Tackling large infestations of ground elder in a well-planted bed can be difficult. To get rid of it completely requires time and patience. Try the following non-chemical approaches:

    1. Lift cultivated plants and carefully remove and destroy any pieces of ground elder rhizome from around their roots. 
    2. After you are sure it has all been removed, replant your garden plants in clean soil or pots. 
    3. The ground elder can now be evicted by digging, or by covering the ground with black polythene to starve the weed of light. It may take several seasons until the ground elder is completely destroyed.

    In new lawns, ground elder will usually be starved by repeated mowing, and should not persist for long.

    Chemical control


    • Established ground elder can be controlled by spraying with a tough weedkiller containing glyphosate (e.g. Scotts Roundup Tree Stump & Rootkiller, Scotts Tumbleweed, Bayer Tough Rootkill, Bayer Garden Super Strength, Doff Maxi Strength Glyphosate Weedkiller or Westland Deadfast Weedkiller) 
    • Protect cultivated plants with sheet polythene or by pegging them out of the way, and take care to avoid spray drift. The gel formulation (Scotts Roundup Gel) may be easier to apply in such a situation  
    • Apply the spray in mid-summer when there is lots of leafy growth, then reapply if necessary later in summer 
    • Spraying in the evening will be far more effective than spraying during the day as more of the chemical will be absorbed by the foliage
    • PRO

      i can see a lot of what looks like lamium , which is invasive and a pest but not really a serious problem 

      ground elder i really dont see -- however ive triple dug borders and removed tons of roots only to see it reappear a few months later 

      its close to impossible to remove in a cost effective manner without some chemicals or a membrane that stops light and then kills it  

      roundup works but in a few treatments and definitely volume of leaf is a big help 

      • PRO

        wow -- i love LJN -- i didnt know a variagated ground elder existed --  search shows it looks a bit different but it possibly seeds to original elder 

        either way from photos : 

        1692.jpg cant see any elder -- geranium type ?

        0918.jpg  looks like lamium to me 

        1694.JPG  lamium 

        0918.jpg  lamium 

        1237.jpg geranium 

        1216.jpg  only one that looks weird ?

        TBH -- someone needs to point out the ground elder -- i cant see it -- and if it isnt there -- looks like an easy ivy situ 

  • PRO

    Like Dan my first reaction was that it was the variegated archangel, I call it Lamiastrum galeobdolon variegatum. A variegated ground elders leaf is made up of 3 leaflets and I can't see any? The lamiastrum has attractive spring flowers but very invasive. I cut it back hard after flowering ,sometimes large areas with a strimmer, if I want to keep it. It can be a useful and attractive ground cover in dry shade. Love it or hate it!

  • PRO
    I'm aware the ground elder isn't visible but it's around. As you can see the grounds are a little over grown. With dead back it was clear. Still it's an all year job which is a bonus
  • I have don a large garden with the same problems for over twenty years got rid of the ivy but still comes through from the other side of the hedges ( 3 days job in winter) the ground elder I have not quite got rid off in the boarders but I find you can spray in early spring as it emerges about two weeks before the plants but you have to check every week and be ready to treat there and then never got it sprayed this spring because it was so mild  the plants were there at the same time   

  • Where you can, lift and divide, the perennials; hand dig and pull out ground elder; once you get your eye in, it's fairly easy to follow. Hopefully the ivy will come out easily. Before you pop the perennials back in check the roots as the ground elder roots will be entwined. If you pull carefully, they often slip out. You'll still need to spot treat with weed killer next year, but you will definitely be on top. Good luck; I've just had 2 days of ground elder removal from a small garden; hadn't been tackled for years!

  • Ground elder you will need to dig down three foot to get rid of the roots .if your not getting in there to spray it .and the ivy can be taken out by lime or treated at the roots .
  • People get excited about ground elder because it is such a pain to get rid of. Usually, it has been spread because people don't think when they turn the soil that they are propagating. It has, after all is said, been around for centuries and has collected a plethora of rude names...the internet is a rather lazy place though as we have come to over-reliant on chemical controls despite the knowledge that endocrine disruptors and carcinogens are involved...maybe when the NHS dies will we get the message and the insurance companies will quickly veto all use...(That said, I use chemicals when needed so who am I to talk?)

    If you can't use chemicals, no plant can withstand constant picking. Rather than digging it out, keep picking at the leaves. You are, over time killing the  plant by removing its ability to feed. But this will involve all the leaves, not just some in one area. This will take a long, long time..

    If you look at your pictures you will notice it doesn't grow where other plants have outcompeted it. Take notes, look at what you have that outcompetes for light. Make it a feature and plant more insistent ornamental species like Waldestenia fragaroides or Cornus canadensis...

This reply was deleted.

Landscape industry Jobs

Gardener – Oxford Lawns and Gardens Ltd

Employer: Oxford Lawns and Gardens Ltd

Job Type: Full Time

Location: oxfordshire

Full time and Part time position for gardeners to join an expanding Company.  Oxford Lawns and Gardens specialise in the… Continue

Garden maintenance team leader

Employer: Garden Force

Job Type: Full Time

Location: guildford

. We require a full or part-time supervisor  for an established garden maintenance round in the  Guildford area. You will be required to drive… Continue

Latest blog post

Trade green waste centres

Start a landscaping business

LJN Sponsor


Technical landscaping books


PRO Supplier

Wycliffe Bowls Club head greenkeeper Keith Freakley and his assistant Raymond John Carter have both praised their recently purchased Dennis Razor Ultra 560 for its ease of operation.

For the past six years, Keith has been looking after…

Read more…