We are overrun by our nandina plants. How do we control them or get rid of them?

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  7. We are overrun by our nandina plants. How do we control them or get rid of them?

More: “I cut one large plant down to the roots. How do I remove the root system, which is very thick and large? I tried to dig it out, but it is too large.”


Here are some suggestions for controlling or removing nandina plants:

  • Digging out the root system can be difficult if it is large. Try using a shovel, pickaxe, or mattock to break up the roots into smaller pieces that can be more easily removed.
  • Frequent mowing or weed trimming of the stems will help weaken the plant over time. Be persistent and continue cutting any new growth.
  • Apply a glyphosate-based herbicide like Roundup to the leaves during the growing season. This will translocate to the roots and kill the entire plant. Several applications may be needed.
  • Cover the nandina with black plastic or landscape fabric to block sunlight and starve the roots. Leave covered for at least one full growing season.
  • For large infestations, rent a stump grinder to grind down the root system several inches below ground level. Monitor and remove any resprouts.
  • Hire a professional landscaper experienced in nandina removal. They will have powerful tools and chemicals to effectively remove the plants and root systems.

Be patient, as complete nandina removal can take 1-2 growing seasons. Persistence is key!

More from Texas A&M/Agrilife:

Texas A&M University Nandina | Texas Plant Disease Handbook