Although blackberry (Rubus) bushes produce tasty fruits for humans and wildlife, these plants also possess prickly spines and invasive tendencies. The aggressive habits of blackberry plants create a nuisance in many gardens, yards and landscapes. These plants often outgrow their boundaries, spreading into areas near streams, flowerbeds and lawns, choking out other desirable plants. Protect your lawn and garden areas from these invasive plants by completely removing blackberry plants from your landscape.
Spray young, individual suckers with an herbicide. Select a foliar herbicide labeled for use in controlling blackberry plants. Use this on actively growing blackberry shrubs. Avoid contaminating the soil and nearby plants with chemicals. Direct a thin spray of the herbicide directly onto young blackberry plants. This foliar herbicide absorbs into the plant and moves through the leaves and stems to the roots, killing the entire plant. Do not attempt to kill large thickets of blackberry shrubs with chemicals.
Dig up the plant from a thicket of invasive blackberries. Remove all other, desirable plants from the area of your blackberry shrubs before digging up the blackberry shrubs. Transplant these desirable plants to other areas of your landscape, or put them in temporary pots to replace in their original locations after you remove the offending blackberries from the area.
Cut down large blackberry shrubs with a rotary mower attached to your garden tractor or use a heavy-duty string trimmer with a blade attachment. Contain the clippings by raking them up and putting them in trash bags. Do not spread these cuttings to other areas of your landscape, as they may take root and grow.
Run a rototiller over the remaining stubble to uproot the canes, suckers and roots. Rake up the exposed vegetation after tilling and remove from your site. Till the area two or three more times to ensure adequate destruction of area roots and suckers. Blackberries require repeated tilling to remove all traces of this hearty vegetation and reduce the chances for new growth.