How to Get Rid of Wild Blackberry Vines

Written by mallory ferland
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How to Get Rid of Wild Blackberry Vines
Blackberry vines have prickly thorns. (brombeerrute image by Mirko Bartenwerfer from

Though blackberry vines bear delicious fruits, they are among the nastiest weeds out there. Sprawling thorns on vines that can reach up to 6 or 7 feet high are nightmares to gardeners who wish to use the space for planting. Blackberries are like trick birthday candles; you blow them out yet they keep coming back. The only way to completely remove a blackberry vine for good is to physically remove every inch by hand or to use chemical herbicides.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

Things you need

  • Sheers
  • Shovel
  • Bucket or Wheelbarrow
  • Boiling water
  • Gallon-size bucket
  • White vinegar
  • Spray container
  • Herbicide

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    Remove the Blackberry Vines by Hand

  1. 1

    Cut off excess branches as much as possible to give yourself a clear view and access to the lower branches of the plant. When you can access the lower branches, cut them as close to the ground as possible. Continue until all of the bushes have been beheaded.

  2. 2

    Discard the branches in a compost pile or burn them in a bonfire.

  3. 3

    Insert a large, heavy shovel at an angle into the ground several inches away from the blackberry stump, and push in until you have enough leverage. The roots will be spread out, so you will need to dig each individual root out in a radius of at least a couple feet. Completely dig out the roots, dirt clump and all. Collect the roots in a bucket or wheelbarrow and remove them from the area to prevent the roots from taking again.

  4. 4

    Boil a gallon of water for each blackberry stump that you dug out and pour it over the opened area. The point of boiling water is to induce rot in any of the small roots that accidentally were left behind. Repeat three times.

  5. 5

    Spray the areas with white vinegar as an extra precaution. Vinegar is generally used to help weed minor infestations and may aid in the removal of any lingering roots as the vast majority of the bush has already been removed.

    Use Chemical Herbicides

  1. 1

    Time your use of herbicides to ensure success. Begin using herbicide spray in the early spring and continue through the fall. The soil must be damp for the herbicide to work to its full potential.

  2. 2

    Mix powdered herbicide that contains triclopyr or glyphosate (multiple brands contain these; review the labels at your local garden store) with the specified quantity of water listed on the package.

  3. 3

    Spray directly at the roots for best results and continue regular applications through a period of 4 to 5 months or until the bushes are completely eradicated.

Tips and warnings

  • Avoid mowing, tilling and burning the bushes as these methods will only spread the roots farther and cause new blackberries to grow.
  • Always wear protective gloves and goggles when working around blackberry thorns.
  • Take care when using herbicides, as they can be hazards to nearby vegetation, livestock or water sources.

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