rose put out suckers, neighbor killed them and parent plant

sunslight(Utah z5-6)May 4, 2014

on my property, next to the property line and a solid fence the neighbors put in a few years ago is (was) a 50 year old Austrian briar. The rose on my side of the fence is 12' wide, 25' long x 10'high. I just noticed half of its length has died. The neighbor said it was coming up on her side of the fence, so, she had the suckers sprayed with brush killer. I can understand wanting to get rid of the suckers--those briars are a real pain, but does she have the right to spray and have it kill my parent plant too? She says, because the suckers are on her property, it is okay to do whatever needs to be done to take out "my" plant that is invading her yard. And cutting the suckers back is too much work, spraying is easier. --I feel sick about losing the plant that has been here for so long.

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buford(7 NE GA)

yes, she unfortunately has the right to do anything to what is on her side of the yard. Should she have? No. But now you know and you should probably not plant a rose that suckers near a property line.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 7:13AM
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Do you think the neighbour would be cooperative if you offered to take out any further suckers by a less damaging (to the original plant) method? Maybe if you apologise for the inconvenience but point out how sad it would be to kill a plant that's been growing for 50 years.
I assume you didn't plant it originally, unless you are fairly old :-)

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 7:26AM
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diane_nj 6b/7a

Take cuttings and look in the Rose Propagation forum for steps to root the cuttings. You could also offer to come over and help manage the plant for her. Seems unneighborly not to say something to you in advance, but she has the right to handle the growth on her side as she saw fit.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 7:28AM
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Kippy(SoCal zone 10. Sunset Zone 24)

Since it suckers, I would dig up some suckers and move them elsewhere.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 11:02AM
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I have an odd shaped lot and have 5 neighbors and there has been an issue at one time or another with all of them.

My Beauty of Glazenwood climbed their pine tree and put on a magnificent show. At one point they cut it off at the fence line, but climbed it again. Their pine tree drops pine needles in my roof gutters. They had the overhanging branches pruned and it somewhat reduced the problem.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 11:28AM
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seil zone 6b MI

I'd do a little of what both Diane and Kippy suggest and preserve your plant while you can.

I've been battling my neighbor's hedge, that only gets clipped on her side so grows decidedly in my direction, for years. We've asked several times if they would be OK with removing the hedge and we would foot the expense of a nice fence but they won't do that. It would never cross my mind to kill it even though I abhor the ugly thing! I end up clipping it myself to keep it from taking over my side of the line. Of course when they clip the top they sweep all the trimmings into my yard and never come to clean them up either. I asked her once why they never come over to my side to keep it trimmed. She said it was my side so it was my problem! It's not my hedge (they were adamant about that when they moved in) and we've been very nice about asking to put up a fence instead and this is what you get. The nerve of some people.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 11:42AM
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sunslight(Utah z5-6)

thanks. I would have taken care of the suckers had she told me and let me do it, but she didn't want her yard dug up. I think the plant used to be a dividing hedge between the lots. I have a walnut tree. When its leaves fall and they blow into her yard, I go over and clean them up. I hated to this see very old and healthy rose be herbicided. it just seems like killing things that are in your own yard are fine but when that killing goes beyond your yard and to the other (mine) it is wrong.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 11:48AM
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Kippy(SoCal zone 10. Sunset Zone 24)

Sun, I meant I would dig up the suckers on your side and replant so that if she does kill the plant, you have fresh babies to replant the hedge.

What is the fence made of? If she does kill the rose and you had new suckers, could you put in a bamboo style blocker so the suckers stay on yourside?

Seil...I feel your pain :) Last weekend while pulling weeds our wonderful neighbors first started screaming about blasting the dog with the hose for barking at us and then stated it would be better to blast us instead. Special. We were about 50 feet from them at the time thankfully, but you can bet I would have called the sheriff if they blasted my 90 year old mom with the hose!

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 12:22PM
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Susanne27(5a Ontario Canada)

Oh my god. This is why I am so afraid to move where we will have neighbours! Our very private and secluded farm is up for sale because it is too much land and responsibility for us any longer. My other concern is that I have been a natural gardener for 20 years and this place shows it as it has an abundant supply of birds and all kinds of insects - beneficial and otherwise. I abhor the thought of someone spraying poison in the air that might waft over to my living space. Sigh. Decisions, decisions.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 3:24PM
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ingrid_vc(Z10 SoCal)

The rudeness and insensitivity of people is a continuing source of wonder. I once had neighbors who had three large dogs. When they first moved in next door and I went out into my fenced yard they barked continuously until I went back in, and this went on for weeks until they became used to me. Not once did the owners try to stop them.

sunslight, I can completely identify with your feelings, although unfortunately your neighbors had the right to do what they wanted on their property. It's even possible they didn't know it would kill your plant. To save you that aggravation again I wouldn't plant anything suckering along that fence line in the future.

seil, it's beyond belief that your neighbors would throw the trimmings of their hedge into your yard. That would really raise my blood pressure. It's beyond rude. Have you thought about putting a fence on your side of the hedge? After all, it would be on your property. Kippy, your neighbors are yahoos of the worst kind. You can't even reason with people who would threaten you in that way.


    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 3:55PM
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alameda/zone 8

Thankfully I only have neighbors on one side of me - I have a good bit of property and a large horse paddock separates us, but I had a very tall fence built some years ago to cover up this huge garage/work area thing where they built racecars. The bright lights ruined any evenings on the patio. The fence was the best thing I ever did. I have gates up on the front of my property and the horse fence keeps any of their dogs from coming on my land. They have a big mutt that yowls and barks its brains out every time it sees me in my yard. They are nice people and we haven't had any issues - I just built a fence. In my opinion, it is best to just bite the bullet and build a fence. I would eat beans and rice to save money to put up a fence. I bought the property across the street so I have nothing but woods, and an easement on the other side with thick woods, so I am pretty much set. If you put up a fence, you are marking your boundary lines - a solid fence is best - you don't have to see them, little conversation, their animals cant get on your land and they cant spray you! Boy, would I call the cops if someone even threatened to spray me! Susanne, you might want to rethink selling your property - I have 30 acres and I don't care if I do get too old to look after it, I will never move closer to town than I am right now! There is no price on peace of mind and serenity!!

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 5:29PM
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bboy(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Laws vary by state and municipality, I would not assume it was legal for the neighbor to spray the rose in such a way that the entire specimen - including the part on your side, was killed.

For example, my state has a law - obviously aimed at protecting forest land owners - that you can't damage somebody else's vegetation without their permission.

On the other hand, in my city if a party erects a fence without contribution from the adjacent land owner then the party putting up the fence is entitled to come over and use a one foot wide strip on the second property owner's side in order to maintain the fence.

This has resulted in one of my neighbors coming over and spraying herbicide as much as three feet onto my side, without discussion - because they know about this rule and have begun to erect a fence (for some months only posts have been present) without my chipping in.

I've looked out and seen the wife way over by my driveway, attacking weeds (the space between my drive and their future fence is maybe 4 ft. across.).

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 5:43PM
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alameda/zone 8

Install a hot wire about thigh high exactly on your property line. Then see how anxious she is to negotiate "her" 3 feet on your side of the fence to come kill weeds. Or can you make a little payment to the fence company, satisfying your part of "paying" for the fence, then she will have no right to come on your property. Or......find out what your rights are if she comes over her 3' and sprays your vegetation - maybe there is some law about the fence owner "spraying noxious chemicals" on your property. Perhaps "maintaining the fence line" does not include spraying. I would speak to someone who knows exactly what this law entails - it might not be exactly what your neighbor thinks it is. And what if you built a flowerbed next to the fence? Does she have the right to destroy it to "maintain" her fence? I think you need to do some checking into this addition to putting up some hot wire. Don't understand why some people do things just to be obnoxious - why would she care whats on the other side of her fence??

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 9:23AM
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I am constantly amazed by folks who believe in the Rights of Private Property EXCEPT the rights of their adjacent neighbors!

bboy, surely, you should not have to put up with your neighbor's trespass. Might you, for example, be able to make a financial contribution to the fence, combined with plantings up to the 1 foot boundary? If the behavior you describe is typical of the neighbor's general attitude, they cannot have very much public support unless they are related to some locally important family. I would think you could contact the relevant local authorities and find out exactly what your rights and obligations are. Maybe show photos and videos which clearly show the 1' area and the trespass beyond that line. I wonder if erecting some sort of inexpensive marking, even survey poles, along the length of the 1 ft. line might deter the worst of the neighbor's trespass? And I believe we do all have the right to tape and photograph any activity on our own property.

Me, I would probably install a 1' wide walkway along the length of the phantom fence, combined with plantings up to the edge of the walkway and a sign proclaiming in English and Spanish that my yard is organically maintained. If you, for example, are growing roses, you do need to be able to prune and trim from every side, hence the need for the walkway.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 11:04AM
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Kippy(SoCal zone 10. Sunset Zone 24)

I like Nastarana's idea of the walk. Makes it obvious what side is theirs and just what they need to maintain up too.

I am redoing an area and have a similar issue, I am going to leave that 12" and then level my side with a low stack block wall. I have a section that is wider than the 12" behind one of our fenced gardens. I can maintain my side no problem and have gates.

I do have a question for those in the know, if your neighbor has left themselves NO access other than trespassing across all of your property to maintain their fence, do you have to allow or should they purchase their own ladder? The bad neighbors will have their fence fall any old time, surprised it is still standing to be honest, and we have our own chainlink fence on our side. But the over watering towntown group has left themselves no way to access except thru our side I have lots of things planted on our side of the line, most by 2 or more feet so there is work room, just no way to reach it. That fence will probably be the first to fall because of the winds even though it is in better shape. (but only by a little bit)

And is there anything that can be done if they leave the old concrete around where their fence was before? They built one guessing on the wrong line and rebuilt a new one more on their side but I have trip hazards all over on our side of the fence but I think mostly on their side of the property line.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 3:10PM
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