Weeds are a problem for anyone trying to maintain a lawn, and it seems like a never-ending battle. No matter how well-maintained your lawn is, sooner or later weeds will poke their heads up and demand attention. Some lawns can look rather beautiful with the odd weeds about but they can quickly spread if not managed.
There is a variety of weed killing products on the market, but they’re not always the friendliest things you can bring into the environment. Luckily, people were dealing with weeds in their garden and on their lawn for hundreds of years before harsh chemicals became available for use. It’s also important to know how to identify weeds.
So, there are several ways to handle the problem without harming the planet, and the first one is the most obvious.
Hand-to-Hand Weed Combat
The most time-honored way to deal with weeds is by hand; find the weed and pluck it from the ground. A mindset of the nice day out in the garden with the right tools, a hat and other protective gear, and a will to do some light exercise is all you need to get the job done in this way. Garden gloves are essential with this kind of work. If you’re planning to continue to work in the garden, make sure you also protect yourself during other activities such as mowing the lawn or using a whipper snipper.
Unfortunately, sometimes it’s not as simple as just pulling the weed out, as many of these plants can regrow from parts of the root system that are left behind. Some devices can help with this, including a dandelion weeding tool, which is designed to remove the entire plant, weeds and all. This tool makes removing the whole root system much easier than weeding, but it can be time-consuming.
If you have a more widespread weed problem, this won’t be the best approach. In those situations, you’ll need to grab your trusty hoe or shovel and dig the weeds out, root system and all. Again, it’s a labor-intensive approach, but it gets the job done.
If you don’t have the time or ability to deal with your weed problem by hand, there are still environmentally-friendly methods you can use.
Natural Weed Killers
Chemicals do an excellent job of destroying weeds, but there are ways to accomplish this without adding harmful substances to the earth. There are several things you can use to kill weeds that do no lasting harm to your lawn. If you’re in early spring and weeds are about to appear, corn gluten meal is an effective weed killer. Completely non-toxic, this substance will prevent weeds from sprouting at all, stopping the problem before it starts.
If you have a more well-developed weed problem, there are other methods you can use. For example, you can make your own weed killer. A long-used method is to mix four cups of vinegar and a quarter cup of salt (plus a small amount of dishwashing soap to make your homemade weed killer cling to the weed) and then spray it directly onto the problem.
Or, if you have vodka that you can use, mix one ounce of vodka into two cups of water, add the dishwashing soap, and then buy your weeds a drink! These options are very useful, but they will give you the best results if the weed is in direct sunlight.
You can also kill weeds with plain boiling water. Of course, this method requires care, as splashing boiling water on yourself can lead to painful burns. Also, the water won’t just kill the weeds, but any other plant life it contacts. This isn’t a suitable method to use in your garden or in your yard since it’s not as precise as other methods, but it’s an excellent way to kill weeds growing through cracks in your driveway, porch, or sidewalk.