Damage to bower vine roots?

kjb2012June 14, 2013

We recently bought a house and we had to remove all the crabgrass and weeds in the back yard (scalped the yard about 4-5 inches) to revamp the sprinkler system to prepare for new grass and plants. There is a beautiful bower vine growing over an arbor, but the roots were very shallow and are now at the surface. Since we'll be laying sod back where the roots are, we need to dig down a few inches so it's level with the patio, but the darned roots are everywhere! How much root system can I cut back without killing the vine? I really love it! I feel like I need to carefully dig beneath the roots and push them down a couple of inches then cover with dirt, but that could take ages!

Thank you for your ideas.

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It looks like the roots are definitely seeking another path because they are blocked on one side by the wall.
I really don't think trying to bury the roots is going to work, you'll just be disturbing them anyway.
My own inclination would be to slightly slope the turf up at that side so that you covered the existing roots, but that's a decision for you.
If you need to level, then do what has to be done and if it means cutting out some existing roots, so be it.
This is a VERY hardy vine, you may get some leaf drop, in fact if you do I'd be inclined to chop it way back and let it settle down again.
Maybe the extra watering onto the new turf will soften the ground underneath enough for the bower vine to root a little more deeply.
I would be surprised if you lost it, I think you'll just set it back. It can be propagated from cuttings as well as seed, why not hedge your bets?

    Bookmark   June 23, 2013 at 2:46AM
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Thanks for the advice alisonoz. I'll try cutting them back and see how it goes!

    Bookmark   June 29, 2013 at 4:54PM
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