Field Bindweed is still gradually taking over Cranbrook lawns and gardens. (Photo by Weed Warrior Frank)

Field Bindweed is still gradually taking over Cranbrook lawns and gardens. (Photo by Weed Warrior Frank)

Beware: Bindweed is taking over

Field Bindweed, akaPerennial Morning Glory, Creeping Jenny, Bellbine, Sheepbine or Cornbind, is still gradually taking over Cranbrook lawns and gardens.

I’m starting to feel like a nag, after reviewing my 2017 and 2018 Weed Warrior articles on this creeping menace with the arrowhead leaves and trumpet shaped white or pinkish flowers.

Why is Field Bindweed a menace, you ask? Perhaps Cranbrook city folk don’t care if this invasive weed takes over and dominates their gardens and lawns, putting two to five tons of roots per acre up to five metres deep in the ground. But rural folks don’t want toxic plants taking over their horse pastures. Field Bindweed can cause colic and nerve damage to horses that eat it while grazing in our pastures.

My Gold Creek neighbour Terry and I thought we had eliminated the small Field Bindweed patches that had hitch-hiked to our properties four or five years ago, but ta-da, we each found a Bindweed vine last week, because Field Bindweed seeds can lurk in the ground for up to 50 years.

Actually, my observant wife pointed out Terry’s bindweed patch in some tall grass on the shoulder of the road, during her afternoon walk with me. The next morning, I showed up with a tank of herbicide at the beginning of the boy’s 7 a.m. forest dog walk, but Terry and I could not find the Field Bindweed, until we came back at 8 a.m. from the dog walk and the flowers had opened up. Creeping vines that are the same green shade as the tall grass, they like to hide in, are almost impossible to recognize until the white flowers uncloak themselves.

Responsible rural people walk their properties regularly, on the lookout for dangerous weeds that don’t belong. How long are you townies going to ignore your Field Bindweed problem? If you want to control Bindweed, constantly collecting and garbaging all the arrowhead leafed vines weekly will gradually starve the roots and prevent seed production. Field Bindweed uses up a lot of energy twice a year, June and August, when it goes into flower, so then you can choose to pick and garbage the flowers to protect pollinators, and spray herbicide on the leaves to kill the vines and roots. Let’s all team up and protect our neighbourhoods. Yes, mowing the grass can temporarily hide the problem, but won’t solve it.

Weed Warrior Frank