The gardener divides opinion by cutting down the neighbour’s overhanging plants before throwing them over the fence
- Have you had an explosive dispute between neighbors about cross-border branches? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
A gardener has divided opinion by cutting down a neighbour’s intrusive climbing plant and then throwing the good-sized cuttings back over the fence.
The Russian vine had grown over the fence, but the neighbors had told Luke about it Just gardensto keep their hands off their foliage.
Russian vine – fallopia baldschuanica – is a native and often invasive climbing vine that belongs to the knotweed family and also commonly goes by the names mile-a-minute, Bukhara fleeceflower, Chinese fleecevine and silver lace vine.
Luke commented on the video of him pruning back the plant: ‘Neighbours above the fence were shouting “don’t touch our vines”.
‘I thought, as if they would even know. It’s a jungle!’
Luke, from Just Gardens, was told to avoid the neighbour’s Russian vine but he cut it down anyway before throwing it over the fence
Russian vine (pictured) – fallopia baldschuanica – is a native and often invasive climbing vine that also commonly goes by the names mile-a-minute, Bukhara fleeceflower, Chinese fleecevine and silver lace vine
Even though your neighbors may be offended if you cut down their plants, you have the right to cut down anything that ends up on your property – unless you are in an area with special conservation rules.
This was pointed out by a commenter who added that if you do that, you are also required to return your prunings to the owner of the plant it came from.
Luke replied that he simply “threw it back over the fence,” much to the amusement of other responders.
He added: ‘This was just too much coming over the fence from the neighbours. I cut it anyway!’
A TikTok viewer commented: ‘Oh, these people’s right not to let you clean up their mess when it’s on your side! Go for it!’
Someone else said: ‘It’s your side, do what you want mate!’
However, others were disappointed with the renovation, with one saying: ‘But it looked so much nicer!?’
But Luke revealed he felt compelled to prune the vines because he was concerned about the amount of weight they were putting on the fence.
Russian vine is often used to cover up what people consider unsightly features in their gardens: shed walls, fences and other borders.
But within a few years it can grow up to ten meters high and five to eight meters wide – hence the nickname ‘mile-a-minute’ – so people can become overwhelmed by the plant’s effects.
This is not helped by her hardy nature, combined with the fact that she is easy to grow in a variety of environments.
So chances are that Luke will have to revisit this issue in a few years, because while you can cut back your neighbor’s plants, you can’t force them to kill them or dig them up completely.
A word of caution for anyone planning to take similar action: if pruning back branches, vines or roots that invade your land causes that plant to die, you will be liable and considered negligent.
Be careful when pruning a neighbor’s plants so that you don’t cause significant damage that will affect the neighbors’ health.