How To Get Rid of Pokeweed | Easy Methods & Tips

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Are you a gardener? A professional one or just for a hobby? No matter what you are but having pokeweed in your garden is a very serious issue. They are toxic and for humans it’s quite invasive if anyone ingests them. If you have pokeweed in your garden then it’s time to wipe them out to save your garden as well as your children as they are more likely attracted to them.

These herbs start with few seeds carried by the birds but it can grow up and spread too fast. Do you want to know how to get rid of pokeweed easily and effectively? Then, stick to the end of this article.

What is pokeweed?

Disturbed soils like barren fields and pastures are the places where pokeweed or pokeberries are found. The whole plant is toxic with about 10 inch long oval leaf. The green color flowers turn into barriers of green color in the month of July and in September turn into grape-like black berries.

The plant is used to produce medicines for years in the traditional way as well as in some places inside the pies. The roots are most toxic and can be deadly for infants. Small amounts don’t affect adults but increase amounts can be dangerous. If you have them it’s wise to get rid of them as early as possible.

How to identify pokeweed?

The red woody steam plants that have an oval leaf of about ten inches long are mainly the pokeweeds. They can be easily identified when they will have grape sized fruits similar to black barriers. These berries look delicious but may cause serious physical damage on inhale.

The pokeweed is commonly bloom flower in September and a cluster of grape like barriers can be seen. These are the symbols as well as you can test the particles in the lab to be sure. They are attractive and look edible but never dare to do that. Carefully identify them and remove them.

Things You Will Need to Get Rid of Pokeweed

There are several tools you need to remove the pokeweeds from your garden and they are as follows:

1. Garden Gloves: A pair of garden gloves will protect you from the toxic elements of the pokeweeds. As they are toxic any accidental cut may infect your body so using properly washed gloves is a must.

2. Shovel or Spade: If you didn’t remove the pokeweeds for years then you will defiantly need a shovel of spade to dig around the plants. Otherwise you will unable to uproot the plant and thus it may re-grow in your garden. Check for seeds while digging, because they need to be removed too.

3. Soil Screen: You will be needed a soil screen as after digging the soil there may be many roots left. You need to filter the soils to separate the remaining roots and that is why the soil screen is necessary for pokeweed removing.

4. A Wheelbarrow: A wheelbarrow is a one wheeler carrying tool that will be needed to carry the screened roots and soils to its place. It’s easy to carry out all the dust outside your garden. You can even use a strong box or cart for this job.

5. The Rototiller: If you think your garden soil is too hard to dig with spade or shovel then it’s wise to use a rotatiller. Though it is an expensive tool it can makes your work super easy and in case if you have big gardens then it’s really convenient.

6. Garbage Bin or Bags: As a final tool you need a garbage bin or bags to collect the pokeweeds and dispose them in a disposable area. Thus you can avoid the pokeweeds to grow in your garden again. Use simple plastic bags instead of garbage bags in case you don’t have them.

How To Get Rid of Pokeweed?

Having pokeweed is not pleasant for the gardener and they must be cleaned from the very last dots. The toxic plants are not welcomed by any gardeners but sometimes birds carry the seeds and spread them from one place to another. The grapes like fruits are attractive to the children so it any cause serious health issue if anyone eat them up. Don’t get worried we will tell you how to get rid of pokeweeds.

As you have already known what equipment or tools you need to eradicate the pokeweeds now it’s time to do the work. We have designed the step by step plan to complete this work with utmost satisfaction. Just follow the instruction as described below:

Use Hands for Small Shoots:

At first you must wear the garden gloves for safety and start with the new shoots that just rise up. It is very simple, just think about the carrots pulling from the soil. What you do? Just firmly grab the base of the plant and uproot them. When you will see the small roots along with a thick taproot you are in the right path.

The best way of doing this is to water the whole garden area just few hours before the hand picking process. The water will turn the soil loose and the weeds will come out easily. For hard soils water the ground the night before the removal process.

Large Plants Need Digging:

As you finished the small shoots removal you are thinking about the big ones. Though you water the ground and left for whole night the larger weeds are not possible to pull out by hands. Now, it’s time for using the shovel or spade you prepared before for using. The maximum length of the pokeweeds is not more than 12 inches. You need to dig a hole around each plant of that depth to make your removing job easier.

While removing larger plants make sure to pull out the whole root because if left any they might grow back again. For safety if possible dig few inched deep and dry them under direct sun before filling again.

Use Screen to Filter:

As these plants produce grape like fruits it is possible that many seeds may left on the ground during the pokeweed removal process. Or even some small roots may hide themselves under the soil. To make sure the removal process is successfully done you need to screen the soil to separate the remaining roots or seeds.

With the help of a roto-tiller drop the loosen soil on the screen placed on the top of the wheelbarrow. The soil will go through the net and the roots will gather on the bottom of the screen. Keep and sharp eyes on seeds, fruits or piece of roots on the screen. Thus you can separate the remaining pokeweeds easily.

Dispose Pokeweed Plants Properly:

As you have collected the pokeweeds, fruits, roots and their seeds, now dry them under the direct sun light. After they become dry fully, collect them on garbage bag for disposing. You can simply throw them in the waste bin or burn them in a safe area. Taking them to the recycling plants is not a good idea as they are toxic. Same goes with cattle feeding.

Never left them of dump them beside your garden area because they will grow back very soon. And keep in minds that don’t throw the fresh pokeweeds because they can still grow back. So, sun drying and disposing accurately is equally important.

Regular Monitoring is Necessary:

Fully get rid of the pokeweed plant problem is quiet hard as it may takes several years. You must monitor the garden or lawn regularly where the pokeweeds once grown and removed. The moment you see any small shoots uproot them immediately.

Sometimes the plants contain pesticides for this before removing them you need to control the pests. You can use Glayphosate Herbicide with 2% solution. With one gallon water use 2/3 tea spoon Glayphosate and spray them on the leaves. And after ten days the pests will be gone and you will able to pull them up from the ground.

Essential Tips To kill Pokeweed Effectively

The most important think you should keep in mind that while removing the pokeweeds from your garden soil make sure you are not ignoring the ripe fruits as they contain seeds. A single fruit can produce hundreds seeds so collect them very carefully and re-check there are no seeds left on the ground.

Moreover, those pokeweeds you are pulling make sure no roots were remaining or they will come back again to trouble you. Try to remove them n the first year or use some chemicals though it may be harmful for your garden. Manual removing is time consuming and tiresome but good for your garden.


To decorate your garden beautifully you have to make sure there are no pokeweeds as they are not only harmful for your garden soil but for humans too. Follow the above mention steps to remove the pokeweeds from your garden easily and effectively. So, when you are going to remove pokeweeds from your garden let us know.  

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