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We had same problem and sorted it by cutting down all brambles and other overgrown stuff with a powerful hedge trimmer - the bonfire burnt for 4 days - and then digging over an area at a time deeply. and havingmore bonfires. Some areas I sprayed with Roundup plus but have found roots still need to be dug.Ihn fact our bonfires became a joke with our neighbours! 

We then kept them cut dwon in areas we were not working on and have slowly beaten the stuff. In the cultivated areas we still have weak brambles but are easily sorted. You do have to keep going over what has been dug.

21/2 years on we still have areas to 'un-bramble' in fact I have started on the last bad area today.

I don't think there is a quick fix really, just hard and persistant work.

Now in the area started today i have found a few (4) newts under some builders plastic. Replaced plastic for now but does anyone out there in garden land know where I can put them without harm, blue builders plastic is right where new rhubarb bed will go


Find another dark damp place - preferably still in your garden - and relocate the newts there. If they're not happy they'll move anyway, it's not time to hibernate yet.


  Ramsey dog, do you work for agrigem?


Broadshot (formerly known as Broadsword) contains Dicamba.  A quick look at the dicamba factsheet shows:

"Dicamba’s toxicity to honey bees ranges from moderately toxic to practically non-toxic"

"Researchers evaluated the toxicity of dicamba to worker honey bees when exposed to dicamba on contact or by ingestion.

Less than half of the bees died at all doses tested."


It also contains Triclopyr.  

"Triclopyr is practically non-toxic to bees"  

I'm always more than a little suspicious of statements like that.  I think it translates to "it is toxic".


my garden is paved but still the brambles grow we have cut them right back and used weedkillers but nothing seems to stem their growth I am really desperate now as nothing seems to work


I also have bramble issues, I have a tiered garden with a decked balcony, they have grown underneath the balcony that we have within an old rockery and the roots are impossible to locate and get out. I have recently cut them back again and was hoping to stop them growing by covering the ground and the rockery under the decking with sheeting or terram, does anyone know if this will work? I was going to block the underneath of the decking off with trellis once the sheeting is down but don't want to go to this trouble if they will grow through. Any advice please?? I would love to grow some clematis or something prettier than this awful bramble!!!


Hannah, if you have cut the brambles down to stumps, paint them now with SBK brushwood killer.


hire a brush cutter (looks like a strimmer but with a metal blade) and take everything you want out down to the ground, then spray with a glyphosate based weed killer (if you can mix it yourself then make it 25% stronger than the normal mix)

this should get rid of maybe 60-70% of the stuff and then cover with something like tarpaulin (not terran or weed matting it'll burst right thru) carpet is great but looked down on a bit now due to the chemicals it can hold.

I have many years of experience working on a councils allotment team clearing out allotments that had been abandoned for many years! - I have the scars to prove it! :S


When you've taken it all down to the ground. What are you spraying treehugger?


sorry should have added, leave for a week, spray the regrowth


I understand now. Might take a bit more than a week but I see where you are


Dig and dig, little bit by little bit. Chemicals are, to my mind, the wrong course. What you'll need to clear the brambles will have to be strong enough to do the job, meaning there's bound to be residue left in the ground, despite the manufacturer's assurances to the opposite.  I found my old garden was very fertile after I'd cleared it, patch by patch, as the years of falling leaf litter had enriched the soil properly.  The mattock was ground down very sharp by the time I'd finished.  Start a fire and keep topping it up as you dig the bramble roots out. Keep some of the best plants for fruit. I believe there are over 2000 recognised clones of blackberry, meaning some of them will be good to eat and ALL will be good for jam. HC

Hannah Parker wrote (see)

I also have bramble issues, I have a tiered garden with a decked balcony, they have grown underneath the balcony that we have within an old rockery and the roots are impossible to locate and get out. ....

I think the difficulty here is that the roots are un-get-at-able in a rockery underneath a deck/balcony.  

Glyphosate would seem to be the only solution short of dismantle the deck and the rockery

An interesting thread as I have had the same problem for years over a large piece of ground. For what it's worth my experience is that the only way is attrition. Cut the fronds back to the root and, when the soil is moist use a strong fork and a crowbar to take out the main root. Then regularly pull or fork out the smaller shoots that will reappear for years. It gets easier over time as the new shoots get smaller.


I am asked about bramble removal all the time - and yes, the only real answer is attrition: cut and dig, cut and dig, but the best advice is definitely to do it "a bit at a time".

I agree with everyone who's been saying that chemicals are not the answer: too many people believe the "dead in 24 hrs, even tough weeds" advertising, and it simply won't work. You have to cut off the tops, and dig out the roots.

But I also agree that a spritz of glyphosate is the best way to tackle small re-growth, and for when you simply can't get to the roots, like poor Hannah with her under-deck brambles.

There's a lot more info on bramble removal here:

With a big, badly overgrown garden, it really is worth having a Bramble Party: get as many friends as you can to come round for an afternoon, and just chop chop chop at the top growth. Once you can walk around the garden without being savaged, it gets a lot easier to dig out the roots.

Good luck!

Rachel's right, cut and dig and have a bonfire going.

to get the roots out I use a sharp mattock,rather than dig.

some pay to go to a gym, a garden workout is just as good and costs nothing.


I have a party of 1 when dealing with brambles, just me and the brush cutter. 

I think it's good advice to just dig out what you can. Though there is a very effective way to kill it with round-up. Forget spraying on the leaves, I find it is hopeless.

When it is cut down (with a brush cutter, it is the sensible option), split the remaining shoot above the ground vertically down. Paint on the round-up (only slightly watered down) directly to the top of the cut shoot and down the split with a paint brush. I'll totally guarantee that it will kill even the hugest brambles, root and all. Leave it for 6 months and reapply if necessary (it won't be), then is the time to go through with mattock and clear the roots out of the ground. Don't delay with painting it on, you want it on the evening the stuff is cut, as it will be attempting to draw nutrients from the leaves down to the roots, there are no leaves though to provide the nutrients, only round-up. 

I'm 99% organic but this is the one time I do resort to weed killer. This technique I've applied to gardens and even huge areas on wildlife sites. Safe quick and I've seen it work time after time.


I've been doing similar to Gemma - my problem brambles are growing through other plants (large established azaleas) that I don't want to lose, so spraying is not an option.  Instead I cut each stem back as far as I can reach and then poke in a bit of pipecleaner soaked in SBK.  Took ages, as quite fiddly, but so far all is looking dead and no regrowth.  Only did it about 6 weeks ago though, so time will tell.

theres a thread on here somewhere where I got the advice

Brush cutter and hedge trimmer, burn it as you go. You'll soon make a difference. If you want a weed killer - try a farm supply shop. Once you can see the difference the motivation will come back. Or you could get a couple of pigs - cleared in no time!