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I have a big problem with what I think is called Mind Your Own Business.  When I lived in Hampshire I tried to grow it to line hanging baskets with as my father does.  Now I live in Cornwall and it is all over the garden and I can't get rid of it, even the chickens don't seem to like it.  Our garden is south facing but has quite a lot of shade due to large sycamore trees (we live in a conservation area so can't do anything about them).  Can anyone suggest a way to reduce it.  I have started scraping it off along with some of the soil but this means losing topsoil.  I would be grateful for any ideas.  Thanks


Many gardeners like mind-your-own-business in the garden. But if you find it getting out of control, try the following:

Non-chemical control

Begin with cultural control options;

  • In borders and other parts of the garden, mind-your-own-business should be eradicated as thoroughly as possible by burying it deeply with mulch, or hoeing it off repeatedly in dry weather
  • Patches of mind-your-own-business in lawns are best carefully removed with a trowel or hand fork, in April or September. After removal, re-establish the soil level and re-sow bare patches with grass seed, or lay a patch of turf taken from elsewhere in the garden
  • Where mind-your-own-business is widespread in lawns, lightly scarify several times during March and April and again during September to weaken it. Feed the lawn regularly to encourage turf vigour and density
Chemical controls Lawn weedkillers

Mind-your-own-business is resistant to all lawn weedkillers and lawn weedkiller mixtures approved for garden use.


Glyphosate (e.g. Scotts Roundup, Scotts Tumbleweed, Bayer Glyphosate Kills Weeds & Roots or Doff Knockdown Weedkiller) can be used successfully to treat mind-your-own-business, best applied as a spot treatment (Scotts Roundup Gel) directly to the weed. For best results follow these tips:

  • Lightly bruise the foliage with the back of a rake or by crushing it underfoot before applying glyphosate, as this will improve effectiveness
  • Shield low-growing shrubs and perennials from the spray until it has dried onto the weed, or use a ready-to-use spray because it is easier to target directly onto the weed
  • In lawns, spot-treat patches with a ready-to-use spray to limit turf damage; a gel formulation (Scotts Roundup Gel) may be particularly useful 
  • Weedkillers containing glyphosate can also be used on paths and drives (e.g. Doff Systemic Path & Patio Weedkiller or William Sinclair Deep Root Ultra Path & Patio Weedkiller)

 Nice one Dove.

Most of us just put in the link Edd. 


Whoops! typo alert - 'accepted practice' not practise 


Roger  Brook

I have an unusual problem with helxine! I must have a sensitivity to it acquired when handling it years ago. I have only have to think of it and I get a headache. I think it is called a psychosomatic reaction. I have a pang in my head writing about it now.

I expect some of you will describe some of my comments as a headache. I have only recently discovered your forum and I find it a real friendly place.



We have a saying in this house Roger,

All symptoms are from the neck up until proved otherwise.

Helxine is easily controlled with glyphosate.  Spray in early spring and then again on any new growth throughout the growing season.

Roger  Brook

Thanks nutcutlet, I am reassured I might be normal. I agree with Verdun about glyphosate, the trouble is when the helxine is entwined with other things

Carefully direct glyphosate with your sprayer if the weed  is growing underneath shrubs or between plants! Many gardeners do not realise if their wanted plants have died down and are dormant at this time of year and the weeds are still green and  growing you can safely and effectively spray them although you will have to wait six weeks or more for them to die


I often use glyphosate in winter, it's very good where cow parsley has seeded within deciduous shrubs. Unfortunately by other meadow menace, hogweed, (not giant) is deciduous - more or less

I had myob, or baby's tears in my lawn. Nothing  I tried killed it and I was faced with successively digging up  part of the lawn each time it came back. But finally I found that ammonium sulphamate does the trick and kills this pernicious little blighter , no problem. Its not licensed in the EU as a weedkiller, but can be bought online as a compost accelerant.



It may also be worth seeing if the canopy of the sycamores can be raised to let in more light and air and water to the ground below.    It would simply involve removing some of the lower branches and would not harm the health or the look of the trees.

The RHS is always happy for people to quote info from its articles and research as long as they get a credit.

Our trees growing over edge of lawn has resulted in about a square metre of mind-your-own-business appearing over past 2 years, on lawn edge. Scarifying in the spring has stopped its spread. I shall have to buy the ammonium sulphamate and try it - thanks evo 2. Our trees provide welcome shade for late afternoon drinks and dinner, particularly during recent sunny days; we don't want to cut them back too much.

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