When you think of weeds, the first thing that comes to mind may be dandelions, crabgrass and other leafy plants. But trees can be weeds too. Several species of plants put out suckers that sprout from the trees' expansive underground root systems. They may be just a few inches or several feet from the parent tree. If you find these weedy tree sprouting in your grass, remove them while they are still sprouts. If left to their own devices, they will become trees in their own right and much harder to remove.
Things You'll Need
- Lopping shears
- Pruning saw
- Glyphosate herbicide
Grasp the sprout at its base.
Pull it toward you sharply to snap it off the root. If the sprout is already too large to snap readily, you'll have to prune it with a pair of sharp lopping shears or pruning saw. Pruning cuts stimulate the tree to regrow another sprout. It may grow three or four in its place. Snap the next set of sprouts that regrow from that area.
Paint the underground cut portion with a small paintbrush dipped in a bottle of glyphosate-based herbicide. It will stop the sprout from regrowing and kill the portion of the root responsible. Only do this, however, if the shoot is at least 3 feet from the tree. Also use this method if you plan to remove the tree eventually and don't mind introducing a little herbicide into its system.