The Q&A Archives: Spreading Quince

Question: I have a number of flowering quince bushes as a back border to my garden. These bushes are sending out lots of runners that are spreading into my flowers. What is the best way to stop these runners?

Answer: Flowering quince (Chaenomeles speciosa) is a very large plant and can spread as wide as six to ten feet across. It may be that it is simply tying to grow. You can try digging and trimming off the shoots below ground, but I am afraid they will come back even stronger as the plants become more established. You will probably find in time that the roots stretch in under your flower bed and cause problems as well. In the long run you might be happier either using a different backdrop plant or moving the flower bed out away from the bushes and leave them ample room. I'm sorry I can't be more encouraging.

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