How can I get rid of this thing???
Since we moved in to this (rental) house 3 years ago, I've been trying to deal with this weed/tree. We moved in the winter so the first season was all watch and see, what plants come up/what the gardens look like. I spent the summer trying to determine if this tree/shrub was an intended part of the garden or not... I decided it was not and have since been trying unsuccessfully to get rid of it.
I tried to dig it up and pull it out when it was small, but the roots were too deep/strong. It grows SO fast! We tried cutting it down when it was bigger - it didn't die, just re-grew from the stump and re-sprouted from all along the roots! At that point, I tried pulling off the off shoots, I could pull off the small ones but once they got big enough they were just too strong and it grew too fast to keep up with.
I decided that NOW is the time to deal with this thing once and for all! But I don't know what to do with it. I don't want to use chemicals because it is adjacent to my vegetable garden and also surrounds/goes under a really nice cluster of hostas. I was also concerned about just digging the whole thing out, both because of destroying the hostas and also not knowing how far deep and how far reaching these unkillable roots stretch - the last thing I want is these weed trees sprouting up in the yard from leftover/cut-off root remnants.
The main trunk/stump is in the left of the photo, new shoots from the roots are towards the right and off image (some of the shoots are laying down bc the hubs was playing with his new weed-hacker). Hostas are just starting to come up in the foreground - if I do try to dig this whole thing out, I should be able to dig the hostas out carefully and then replace them, right? The main trunk is probably 6" in diameter as it goes into the ground. I might be able to find a picture of it with foliage from last year if that would be helpful... I have no idea what it is, I just want it gone and can't figure out how to kill it!