How to eradicate brambles

Updated February 21, 2017

Brambles are common woody weeds that have extensive root systems and can quickly become invasive. Brambles include wild blackberries and raspberries, which are thorny as well as fast-growing. The plants are vigorous and require a multi-faceted approach to eradication, especially if the stand is large. Manual cutting-back combined with herbicide application and root destruction should eradicate brambles. They may regrow the next spring, but the young shoots are easy to remove.

Cut the brambles back to about 30 cm (12 inches) above the soil. If you have large stands of brambles, a strimmer will make this easier. For small stands, pruning shears are effective.

Pull out the bramble vines you have cut and discard them in the rubbish bin. Do not compost brambles, because this may lead to propagation.

Spray the cut ends of the brambles with a glyphosate-based bramble herbicide. Spray all the way down the remaining 30 cm (12 inches) of stem. Follow packet directions for application.

Wait the instructed amount of time for the chemicals to reach the root system and kill the roots. This varies with the brand of herbicide you are using.

Dig up the dead root system with a shovel. Remove as much of the root system as you can find.

Pull up any regrowth as soon as you see it the next growing season. You can also spray any regrowth with the herbicide, then pull it up once it is dead. Continue pulling up regrowth until it stops sprouting.

Things You'll Need

  • Strimmer or pruning shears
  • Glyphosate bramble herbicide
  • Shovel
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About the Author

Based in Richmond, Va., Dawn Gibbs writes about topics such as history, fashion, literature, crafts, alternative medicine and healthy living. Her work has appeared on and several style websites. Gibbs holds a Bachelor of Arts in history from Virginia Commonwealth University.