Effective Weed Control
Practices and Products Without Chemicals
July 11, 2019
When it comes to getting rid of weeds, you don’t always need chemicals to do it. There are more natural effective weed control practices and products available—you may just need a little more patience and persistence.
Effective Weed Control Practices
Sometimes it’s not about the product at all, but more about certain garden practices that help treat and prevent weeds.
- Remove by hand. Some see pulling weeds as a chore, some see it as a meditative process. However you see it, you’ll be seeing fewer weeds after a while. Whether you simply pull with your hand or use a garden tool to dig the weeds out, make sure you get to the root and not just pull the top or the weed will return. Consistent weeding helps reduce recurrence, especially with young weeds.
- Squeeze them out. Less space for the weeds to grow means fewer weeds. You’ll have to be the bully of your garden and not let them sit with your other plants by filling the space with dense ground cover or perennials. Shade from trees and shrubs also help prevent weeds from growing.
- Burn them out. Cover an area of weeds with a heavy plastic sheet and let the heat of the sun do the rest. This only works in areas where there’s no grass to kill. You’ll know it’s done when the weeds underneath are clearly brown and fully baked.
- The right diet. Just as your plants need food and water, so do weeds. Only give your plants just enough so there’s not any left over to invite weeds to grow as well.
- Don’t go digging. Too much turning of the soil can cause weed seeds to reach the surface and sprout.
Non-Chemical Weed Control Products
If you’ve tried other methods and want to turn to a more natural, everyday product, try these:
- Mulch. Cover soil with a layer of organic matter to smother weeds and prevent new seeds from germinating. Many substances act as mulch, including compost, bark, wood chips, newspaper, cardboard, grass clippings, straw, or most other organic matter. If you want a weedless walkway, lay ground cloth or other thick material like an old shower curtain underneath.
- Corn Gluten Meal. This powdery byproduct of the corn milling process has been found to help prevent weed seeds from germinating.
- Vodka. Mix an ounce of vodka with two cups of water and a couple of drops of dish soap and spray on weeds with sun exposure. The alcohol will dry out the weeds—and any other plants it touches, so use with caution.
- Vinegar and Salt. Mix household vinegar with salt and soap and spray directly on targeted weeds.
- Boiling Water. Pouring it over weeds will burn them. Try this method for weeds growing in cracks of pavement.
After trying these methods, if you’re still unsuccessful at controlling certain weeds, contact Cardinal Lawns for more information on how to tackle those tougher plants.
Download Your FREE Lawn Weed Guide
Before weeds take over your yard this season, learn to identify and prevent them in the first place. Keep your lawn looking great all year!