There is no doubt that weeds are the biggest problem that could make an otherwise perfect lawn look poorly maintained. They develop quickly and before you know it, they are already stealing the soil’s nutrients and getting in the way of the grass’ proper growth. 

But how can you get rid of the weeds without harming the grass? We are glad you asked! Because we know a few tricks to make the pesky intruders disappear. 

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Natural ways to kill weeds without harming the grass

Chemical weed killers are a dime a dozen. A main concern among lawn owners, though, is the effect these chemicals have on the environment and the residue that will be left after treatment. If you are also worried, then testing eco-friendly home remedies for permanently getting rid of weeds is just the thing for you. 

Killing weeds with vinegar

Vinegar can serve many purposes around the house. It is considered a toxic-free cleaning alternative and it can help you kill off the weeds in the lawn the same way it helps you remove germs. 

Remember, though, that it’s best to stick to white vinegar, which is broadly distributed in stores. The most suitable product to help you get rid of weeds naturally should contain 3% to 5% acetic acid.

Check also: Cleaning Vinegar vs White Vinegar | What’s the difference?

Stronger vinegar with up to 20 % acetic acid, also known as horticultural vinegar, is available, too. While you may be tempted to use it because it looks stronger and, therefore, should provide more effective weed control, better reconsider. It can be dangerous for both your health and the environment because of its corrosive power.

A less aggressive vinegar will work just fine. And once you get it, here is what you have to do next:


Step 1: Get an empty and clean spray bottle. 

Step 2: Pour the vinegar in. You can mix it with water if you have concerns about affecting some of the grass or add soap, as vinegar and 1-2 tablespoons of dish soap can be an even more effective weed killer. 

Step 3: Stir well until the ingredients blend.

Step 4: Apply the natural solution to the weeds’ covered area, but be careful not to get it on the grass or the soil itself. It’s most convenient to apply it when it’s dry and sunny out since it will dry fast.   

Step 5: Check the results in a few hours and follow up with more spraying if needed. 

Killing weeds in the grass with vinegar is a popular method that is worth giving a try. The amount of weed-killing mixture you prepare will depend on the ground you need to cover. After a few hours the weeds should begin to dry, changing their colour from green to yellow. 

Getting rid of weeds with salt

Another great idea for a homemade weed killer requires just plain water and salt. You probably already have table salt sitting around in your cupboard, so now is the time to take it out and start mixing. 

Here is the preparation process:

Step 1: Heat up some water on the stove. 

Step 2: Once it starts boiling, add the salt. The water and salt proportions should be approximately 2:1. 

Step 3: Let it cool off a little bit and get that clean spray bottle ready.

Step 4: Pour the blend in and start spraying. 

The salt in combination with the hot water will make the weeds dehydrate and perish completely. Keep an eye on the effects of this eco-friendly weed killer and do another round over the next few days if the weeds prove to be stubborn. 

Using boiling water to kill weeds

This is a harmless way to tackle those pesky green intruders in your lawn. Pouring hot water on the weeds also qualifies as the cheapest option, since all you need is plain H2O. 

Don’t use too much water or you won’t be able to stop it from spreading to the grass. The water will not harm the soil but could kill some grass blades in proximity. If that happens, consider planting new seeds on the spot. 

When pouring water on the weeds, try to cover the leaves, as well as the stem. Keep in mind that seeds that are already in the ground will hardly be affected by the water. If you see new weeds emerging in the same area, make sure you remove them before they have a chance to grow. 

Since this is hot water, be extra careful not to get any of it on yourself. Keep your hands and feet covered and as far away as possible when treating the weed-affected area.

Water can kill weeds in another form – as steam. For the purpose, you will need a gardening machine with steaming power. Thanks to the powerful stream flow it produces, the weeds turn from green to black pretty fast. However, this is a more suitable method for treating paved areas, large weed-infested areas or just the weeds in the edges of your lawn. 

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The chemical way to remove grass weeds without killing the lawn

If you are set on trying some specialised products for eliminating the unwanted plants in your lawn, then you will need the right herbicide. There are basically two types:

  • Selective herbicides – These are meant to kill specific kinds of weeds. Such are the broadleaf herbicides, which provide control over dandelion, bindii, clover and the likes.  
  • Non-selective herbicides – As the name suggests, these are more generic products. They can kill everything and usually work down to the root. 

Preventive measures to keep the weeds away

Once you get the weeds out, they’d better stay out. For that to happen, though, you will have to pay attention to your lawn regularly and take measures early. Some of the things you can do include:

  • Hand weeding – Take those weeds out the moment you see them grow. Hand plucking is the easiest, cost-free and efficient method to prevent an infestation. It may be hard sometimes and it takes time, but it works, especially if you can take the whole weed out, roots and all. Weeding is even considered a stress-relieving activity by some gardeners. 
  • Fertilising twice a year – This will guarantee that your grass will stay strong and be less likely to develop weeds. The process is best done either early in the spring, when the grass is waking up, or in autumn when the lawn is going into dormancy. 
  • Applying the proper weed control products –  The success of a weed killer depends on your ability to choose and apply it at the right time. It all comes down to pre-emergent and post-emergent herbicides. The first ones are meant to block germination of the weed seeds, while the latter are meant to kill already existing weeds. Some of those are even combined with fertilisers, so your lawn can benefit even more from the application. If you are looking for an organic pre-emergent weed killer, you can give corn gluten meal a try.  

All weed killing products are available in the specialised store. We suggest that you consult with someone if you are having doubts about a product’s efficiency and suitability for your lawn. You can always get a lawn care specialist in the area to inspect your lawn and take care of a weed situation or another issue for you.

Takeaways:

  • Vinegar may be a natural weed killer, but you have to be careful what kind you use. Stick only to milder products with 3%-5% acetic acid. 
  • Before opting for chemical weed control, make sure you have the right products. Keep in mind the following things: what’s the type of weed, are you tackling full-grown weeds or taking care of the seeds, too. 
  • The most certain way to always have a weed-free lawn is to give it your attention and care regularly. Having a busy schedule doesn’t always leave much time for it, but having a reliable and skilled lawn care professional at your disposal can make a difference.  

Posted in Gardening Tips

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