Rose of Sharon removal forever

Asked February 8, 2020, 5:01 PM EST

Hi there, I've been back and forth with two mature rose of sharons in my backyard. They are easily 12-15 ft tall and wide, and though I've tried to deadhead them to prevent shoots all over the yard, the rose of sharon proves too formidable a foe. At one point there were 9 rose of sharons in the backyard, and countless shoots. I've got things down to 4 rose of sharons, with the 2 original ones being the largest. How do I get rid of these multi-trunked trees forever? I do not want to use herbicide. Do you think cutting off as many branches as possible during the winter would start to kill the tree, so that by the time the ground thaws and I dig in to attack the root ball, the tree will be easier to deal with? Also, we are thinking of planting 2 red haven peach trees in the spot where the 2 largest rose of sharons are now. Any specific soil amendment suggestions? Thank you very much for any suggestions.

Ottawa County Michigan

1 Response

Rose of Sharon can be a struggle to eliminate especially without herbicides. Of course, seedlings will still need to be removed but when you remove the plant you most likely will get sucker growth. These can be more difficult to remove since they are attached to the roots. Suckers can show up several feet away from where the shrub was located. The trick is to take out the seedlings and suckers as soon as they show up so not to deliver any energy to the root system. Mowing small shoots can work. Don't wait! Eliminate them as soon as they show up. This may take a few years. Be persistent.

Current thinking for planting trees is to use the native soil. Adding amendments can cause the plant to limit its growth to the amended soil.

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