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I have an antisocial neighbour that has lived there several years.  They are unapproachable and live in a hovel. I have nettles and bindweed invading my flower border.  I try to pull up what I can, but there is a network of spaghetti roots in the soil and under the fence between us. Sometimes I end up pulling up my own plants. I also have tried spraying with weed killer and again have to be careful of my own plants, especially the woody shrubs etc.  Any tips please?


I have exactly the same problem so will be greatfull for any ideas



Buy yourself some slates and push them into the ground along the fence line.  That should help a bit.  Also move some of your plants away from the fence so you can apply weedkiller more easily.

Alina W

I agree with the physical barrier idea - it's really the only way to stop the weeds. Above ground you can fix wind netting to the fence to hold them back.


It would be a bit of a project, but you could get some root barrier membrane and dig a trench along the boundary and create a real barrier to stop the roots spreading your way.  You'd probably have to dig some of your own plants up in order to do it, but it would be really worthwhile



@clairecat.. i appreciate your problem i hve it coming from both sides.. neither neighbour likes gardening (makes me wonder why they bought houses with lots of land attached in the first place) i have just learnt ot live with it and weed it all out.. the slates down in the ground to work on the bine weed etc.. it stops it traveling as they cant get through, i also suffer ground elder.. it works for that too. but there is little we can do about it really.. i have given up asking mine to cut back the brambles and shrubs.. so i just do it my self and put it back on their side.. as i have to

i have also bee told to brush spirit vinegar or wite spirit on teh leaves and that will kill it.. i am going to attempt this once the rain stops for a few days.. will let ya know if it works.

Good idea about the slates, do you think they should be pushed down sideways or not, just wondered about the depth they would need to be to stop ground elder and brambles from next door.My neighbour actually waters his ground elder!


I haven't got a neighbour, but I have nettles and bindweed! I've dug and weedkilled, the nettles aren't too bad now but the bindweed is impossible! My garden is on 3 levels with stone walls terracing the levels and the bindweed burrows under the walls. The roots can go down pretty deep.

Get in touch with your council.  They can serve an enforcement notice on your neighbours getting them to sort themselves out.  It doesn't matter if it's a privately-owned house or council house, they can take the owners to court, if they won't do it themselves, the council will do it and charge the house owners.

I know this as I was on the recieving end a few years ago (dispute with our next-door neighbour got out of hand as he had some mental health issues), I couldn't sort out the front garden as I was in a wheelchair at the time.  My husband ended up spraying weedkiller liberally and strimming the lot, it wasn't pretty but sufficed until I was well enough to potter and do a bit here and there.  The threat was enough to get it sorted.  Unfortunately we're still not on speaking terms with the neighbour, he still has his issues and has assaulted both my husband and the chap across the street (neither is exactly small).

If your neighbours truly are that bad, you have nothing to lose - the thing that really annoyed me was the fact our neighbour KNEW I was in a wheelchair and I was the gardener, and he didn't bother asking me or my Husband to sort it out, but went straight to the council.  You may be surprised at the powers councils have, they can fine you (there are by-laws about the state of your property and land), and the ultimate sanction can be the loss of your home if you are in a council house.

trouble with me is next door are on friendly terms and every time I ask him to sort it he says he will but never does, now I dont really want to fall out but it looks like I will have to to get anything done. I am also friends with the landlord who I have told several times but she cant get in to sort it herself. So everything is falling on deaf ears.



I think I'd talk to the landlord and ask her to sort it out, otherwise you'll be forced to go to the council.  If she's faced with the prospect of a court appearance/fine, she'll find some way of getting in there to get the work done.  As long as you're paying your rent on time and are not in arrears or anything, you have the right to enjoy your property, including the garden.  I was involved in a dispute years ago when I was a student, as the upstairs flat was full of dole-dossers (not stereotyping, but they were up all night partying and slept all day, apart from signing-on day).  It meant that I was getting behind on coursework, as I couldn't sleep (had the council noise monitoring equipment in).  As soon as the landlord realised that I had the council involved and he was likely to be in court for breach of contract (the expectation of quiet between 11pm and 7 am is implicit in most rental contracts), he served an eviction notice on the upstairs.  When he actually went in to clear it out, the police got involved as he found loads of used needles & other bits & pieces, it looked like the chap was pimping the 2 girls he lived with for drugs and money for drugs.  I've never been so glad I shared the flat my best mate and her bloke, I dread to think what could have happened if someone got the wrong flat and there were only us two girls there!

Most landlords just want a quiet life, so they'll normally sort things out before the council gets involved.  Mine just needed a kick up the backside, as he was always saying he'd sort it and never did, he thought I was making it up about the noise and partying, as soon as he found out about the noise monitoring equipment the council had put in, he moved like greased lightning to get the upstairs flat emptied and let out to a working couple!


@toots.. i put mine in length ways down(like on the roof).. so can go down a bit futher and wont miss any trying to sneak under..

what ever you do do not start a fight with nice neighbors it is not worth the hassle to fall out with people you see evryday and it is worth the effort to solve the problm from your side of the fence at all times.even here where i ave had a nice garden for many years and i still ave to weed the garden evry week but that is part of gardenin.


indeed it is keiths lemon.. even when everything is wilting in the heat and dry.. they keep growing.. but it gives me reason to go out there during that time when not much else to do but dead head.

I have similar problem with weeds coming through but unfortunatley it is from land that used to have a building on it but  is full of brambles, bineweed, old furniture/ mattresses people dump there.  This land belongs to the council and they seem happy to just leave it as it is.  This summer I paid some guys £100 just to try and clear some of the weeds growing near my fencing.  I can't afford to do this all the time though. Suggestions?



yas yadi wrote (see)

I have similar problem with weeds coming through but unfortunatley it is from land that used to have a building on it but  is full of brambles, bineweed, old furniture/ mattresses people dump there.  This land belongs to the council and they seem happy to just leave it as it is.  This summer I paid some guys £100 just to try and clear some of the weeds growing near my fencing.  I can't afford to do this all the time though. Suggestions?


Have you spoken to the council about this or failing that your local councillor?

It does seem odd that they would just allow this to happen


Not odd at all, councils seem happy to play the double standard card. They can fine you if you breach the by laws but they are less likely to fine themselves when its on their land. Make sure you get plenty of pictures to prove your point. (would be fun if you didnt tell them it was their land until they talk legal actions or fines). Ask your neighbour to come and do your garden. Mine came and cut down my Ivy (by 4 feet) which was over the top of my wall by about 5 inches when I was on holiday with out even asking, I was furious. 


Push some slates in the ground along the fence line. This will keep weeds away.


Moonsilk2,  would it be any use asking the friendly neighbours if you could help them to tidy their garden, you could maybe get a small work party of family and friends and make a day of it, and perhaps strike up even more of a friendship. 

At least your neighbours are approachable.

Clare, if you are on a tight budget, you could dig down by the fence and use plastic sacks, like your compost comes in, cut into wide strips. I have done this to stop ground elder creeping until I can find time to dig more out. it works well. and costs nothing.


Is the landlady the owner of the house with the untidy garden? I wasn't quite clear about that. She says that she can't get access to the garden? She has the right to gain access when she gives her tenants 48 hours notice in writing, though it is polite to give a little more time. She could insist that they keep the garden tidy or she could lay down weed suppressing membrane and gravel or lay bark over the top.