How to Kill Wisteria in Your Yard?

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Are you deeply into gardening? Then, getting rid of weeds from your garden must be your top priority.

Weeds tend to invade the healthy growth in your garden, and it becomes quite essential to remove them in time.

 However, you might sometimes get fooled by weeds that adorn your yard with beauty and fragrance. The statement best suits Wisteria because of its immense charm, persuading you to keep it on your lawn.

But at the end of the day, it is an invasive weed that grows and climbs aggressively in your yard and even up to the height of tall buildings. So, if you are finally ready to let go of this ornamental vine in your yard, it is time you knew how to kill Wisteria.

Though it might seem an extremely challenging task considering the notorious nature of Wisteria, there are various methods to kill and eradicate its growth in your yard. Hence, to make the task easy for you, we have discussed how to kill Wisteria in your yard (with pictures) and provide you with a healthy lawn.

Why is it Necessary to Kill Wisteria?

Why is it Necessary to Kill Wisteria?
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Wisteria undoubtedly makes a pretty ornamental vine for your yard. However, once established, it becomes invasive and hinders the growth of other desirable plants in your lawn. Besides, it can be toxic to many animals, including your pets.

Moreover, when it takes over trees and spreads over the branches, it may eventually kill them by getting into the bark. It could eventually lead to deforestation. Wisteria also tends to block sunlight for native plants and ground cover. Hence, these reasons lead us to kill Wisteria before it takes over your yard.

Different Methods to Kill Wisteria

Now that you know much about the nature of Wisteria and why it is so difficult to kill, it is time to explore various methods to kill Wisteria. To successfully get rid of Wisteria, you must discourage the growth of its branches and the root system.

You can do so by various chemical and natural methods. It can be achieved by directly applying herbicides to the rich foliage or cutting the stump of Wisteria. The latter allows you to eradicate its root system more effectively.

You can also use the mechanical means in which you need to pull out the shoot system or dig out the roots to kill the vines once and for all. Hence, considering these different ways of getting rid of Wisteria, here we have provided a step-by-step guide under five different heads. Hence, you can select the most appropriate method and free your yard of Wisteria.

1. Chemical Methods

As mentioned earlier, you can spray chemicals, such as herbicides, in two different ways. You can apply it to the foliage or a cut stump in the following ways.

Step 1. Foliage Treatment

Foliage Treatment
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Foliage treatment is an effective way to kill Wisteria. However, it proves most beneficial when the Wisteria spreads on the ground and not on the trees. Using this method in the latter case may harm the trees on which it is climbing.

If you want to use the foliage treatment method, you must do so during late spring or summer and look for new shoots to spray on. All you need is a foliar herbicide and a sprayer, and you are all set.

Prepare the Herbicide

First, you must make a few preparations, such as herbicide and choosing the right time to spray it. You can use a foliar herbicide containing 2% glyphosate or triclopyr blended with 0.5% of a non-ionic surfactant. The best time to spray the herbicide on the foliage is during the growing season when new shoots appear.


You can spray the herbicide on the foliage with protective gloves and a sprayer, keeping it away from other plants.


After spraying, you must repeat the treatment for some days. It helps eradicate the shoots that fail to die in the first application. Also, you must not sit back but keep checking for the new growth of Wisteria.

Step 2. Stump Cutting Treatment

Stump Cutting Treatment
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Cut stump treatment is another way to get rid of Wisteria. It is the most recommended method and works effectively. However, you must use it when the Wisteria growing in your yard consists of more than one main trunk.

The best time to use this treatment is during late spring, fall, or summer. Though it requires manual labor, stump-cut treatment gives you the best results. Also, this method works best for Wisteria having stems of at least ½ inch in diameter.

1. Choosing the D-Day

Choosing the right day to apply foliage treatment is necessary. You must check the weather and choose a day without rainfall. Also, the temperature must be below 85 degrees Celsius.

It is to ensure no herbicide gets washed away due to rain or evaporated due to high temperatures. It reduces the effect of the herbicide, thus requiring you to apply it multiple times. Late spring, fall, or summer works best for the treatment. If you apply the treatment during early spring, the rising sap in the trunk will prevent the herbicide from reaching the roots.

2. Foliage Removal

Unlike the foliage treatment, this method requires you to remove the foliage and then apply the herbicide. You can remove the foliage using a saw and pruners to cut off the branches and stems to reduce the wisteria plant down to a trunk.

3. Herbicide Preparation

Herbicide preparation is the most important step to maintain the effectiveness of this treatment. You must do it immediately after cutting the trunk before the wisteria plant begins forming a seal.

The herbicide you use must consist of glyphosate or triclopyr high in strength. With a strong solution, 20% of glyphosate or 8% of triclopyr works the best. Even half of the herbicide works well for the stump-cut treatment method.

4. Spraying

After preparing the herbicide and cutting down the foliage, it is time to spray it. To do so, you must cut the trunk down to a stump and apply the herbicide using a spray or a brush on the edges and inside the bark of the trunk. You must ensure to apply the herbicide on the fresh-cut trunk as a sealed trunk would not allow it to be soaked down to the roots.

5. Repeating

You must follow up on the treatment in a few weeks or according to the growth of new shoots and foliage.

Step 3. Home Remedies

Home Remedies
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You can also use home remedies to kill Wisteria in your yard. It involves the substitution of chemical herbicides with household products, such as bleach, Epsom salt, etc. Home remedies prevent your plants from the harmful effects of chemical herbicides.

However, if used in higher quantities, bleach and Epsom salt tend to damage the soil. The best time to use home remedies is during late summer or spring.

1. Bleach

Bleach is an effective way to eliminate Wisteria, no matter how invasive the growth is. In this method, you need to immediately strip the wisteria plant’s bark, applying the bleach, so the bark does not seal itself.

You can use a vegetable peeler or a knife to strip the bark. The bleach method can also be used with the cut stump method as a substitute for the chemical herbicide. The bleach penetrates deeper into the plant and hinders the growth of Wisteria.

2. Salt

Epsom salt or regular salt can also kill Wisteria, as these can hinder plants’ growth when used in large amounts. Regular salt comes with various options, such as table salt, rock salt, etc.

While Epsom salt and regular salt have the same effect on plants, Epsom salt works gently on the soil and is recommended in most cases. Like bleach treatment, you can also use salt with cut stump treatment.

To do so, you will need to drill the stump, fill salt and add hot water for it to dissolve. Also, you need something to cover the stump to prevent it from getting washed off in the rain. The treatment must be repeated until the wisteria plant dies. It is recommended to wash off the salt from the soil after this so that it does not affect it.

2. Natural Methods

Besides the chemical treatment and home remedies, you can try some natural methods to eliminate Wisteria in your yard. The natural treatment includes starving the plant and digging out the root system.

Though the natural methods may be time-consuming, they mean no harm to other plants in your yard. Moreover, you can apply these methods anytime without waiting for a particular season.

Step 1. Starving the Plant

Starving the Plant
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this method requires you to starve the wisteria roots by cutting off sunlight. You must remove the wisteria vines before preventing sunlight from supplying to its roots.

It requires manual labor as you need to remove the foliage physically. Moreover, you need to be consistent at removing any new shoots that appear to prevent Wisteria from gaining its strength. The roots will eventually starve, and no new shoots will grow.

Step 2. Digging the Roots

Digging the Roots
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this method works similarly to starving the plant. However, it is less time-consuming as you must dig up the root system, preventing the plant’s growth from above and below the ground. You must repeat the process and be consistent until no new shoots appear.


What are the household items one can use to kill Wisteria?

You can use bleach and salt (Epsom or regular) to eliminate Wisteria without chemical treatment.

Which method is suitable for Wisteria growing as a ground cover?

Foliage treatment works best when Wisteria grows as a ground cover so that other plants remain unaffected.

Which varieties of Wisteria are invasive?

Chinese and Japanese Wisteria are considered invasive species compared to the US variety.

What if I do not want to use chemicals to eliminate Wisteria?

You can use home remedies or natural methods such as starving the plant or digging up the root system to kill Wisteria.

What are the disadvantages involved in using bleach to kill Wisteria?

Excess bleach is harmful to the soil. Hence, you must use bleach in limited amounts as a home remedy to kill Wisteria.


Wisteria is a highly invasive weed you can find in your yard. Though it may enchant you with its unique foliage and fragrance, it may choke other plants in your lawn to make space for itself. Hence, it becomes necessary to remove it at the right time. So, you can use any of the above methods to kill Wisteria in your yard and attain a serene lawn.

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