4 Ways to Kill Weeds Without Harmful Chemicals

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common gardening problems

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Herbicides… yuck!! The thought of spraying florasulam and glyphosate around the yard is abhorrent to you.

As an alternative, let’s look at 4 commonly practiced alternative methods. They’re not necessarily as fast-acting but are effective and completely safe — except for the weeds, of course.

1. Vinegar


You can use household vinegar to kill weeds. Vinegar is actually 5% acetic acid. There are stronger kinds of vinegar that can be found and would be more effective — but if you use them incorrectly, they may damage the soil.

A good combination is a vinegar combined with liquid dish soap. Re-application will be necessary, and the process is best done during dry weather.

For a good tutorial on using vinegar check out the video below:

2. By Hand

Tried and true, and what could be more simple? (if not a trifle backbreaking)

Manual removal is very efficient if you follow a few simple rules. In the spring, when you first see weed seedlings sprouting, hoe them out and leave them on the surface of the bed to dry out. Always choose a calm, dry day for this task, or the seedlings will re-root!

Annual weeds like dandelions should be forked up well before they produce seeds, pull them out and dispense of them so they don’t get a chance to settle back down!

Use garden gloves with some grip on them and a trowel to ensure you remove the root system.

3. Prevention

40 lbs of prevention is worth a whole lot of cures.

You can buy organic weed and feed products that change the chemistry of the soil to prevent weeds from germinating. Also, here’s a do-it-yourself video that gives advice on this type of preventative lawn care.

4. The Kettle

It’s not just for sadistically destroying ant colonies that have taken over your backyard now — boiling water is a very effective means of spot weed control, too.

It will cook and kill your weeds, so it’s especially good for weeds popping up in your driveway or sidewalks. Care must be taken not to kill neighboring plant life, as boiling water, for all its wonderfulness, can’t exactly distinguish between good plants/bad plants.

Why Bother With Natural Weed Control?

We all hate weeding. And on top of that, many of us hate the chemicals used in weed-killer products.

Using a combination of the above methods is not difficult; it is very inexpensive and safe for our soil and neighboring animals. If you can fight your weeds on a regular basis, over time, they will diminish, and the struggle won’t be so daunting and time-consuming.

Then you’ll have much more time available to do the things you really love… like cutting your grass.

  • Greener Ideal Staff

    Greener Ideal helps you live your life in more sustainable ways with green living tips and commentary on the latest environment news. We want to protect the planet and reduce our collective carbon footprint.

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