We bought a house in the winter, and come spring found that the back yard is rapidly turning into a monoculture of goutweed. It's connected to patches in 3 of our neighbors' yards; two of them are fighting it to various degrees, and one doesn't care and has a history of not cooperating with their neighbors about things like this.
My plan for managing this thing is as follows:
1) Chop out as much of it in the spring as possible, making sure not to put the roots anywhere they can come back (like compost) - maybe trash bags in the sun for a few weeks to cook it?
2) Dig a trench around the edge of the property and put down a rhizome barrier to limit the spread from our neighbors. I hate to put plastic in the soil but I don't know if there is an alternative.
3) Cover the ground with cardboard and then mulch (branches, leaves, and wood chips).
4) Wait and weed vigilantly, probably for years.
Do I have a chance? How do I keep it out of the raised beds I'd like to put in near the edge of the patch?
I know some people eat the stuff but I'm not keen to. Are there other ways I can turn this plague into a resource? Having animals browse it is not really an option for us on our small urban lot.
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