The 5 best weed killers for the home gardener
Weeds are the worst enemy of homeowners who are hoping to have a healthy lawn. Once weeds start sprouting up in your lawn they can multiply quickly, and before you know it they can overtake your lawn completely. These plants will begin to fight for space and nutrients, causing otherwise healthy grass to suffer. To prevent weeds from causing this type of damage to your lawn, consider the following weed killing methods:
1. Pre-emergent treatments
The most effective way to prevent grass weeds from becoming a problem in your lawn is to use pre-emergent herbicides. If used correctly, these chemical treatments prevent weeds from growing in your yard – curing the problem before it arises. Unfortunately there is a very small timeframe in which these herbicides can be used successfully, and if you miss this window of opportunity the treatment will be completely ineffective. This is because these treatments work by preventing seeds from ever sprouting, if this has already taken place a different technique must be used.
If you’re looking to remove weeds using an all-natural method, consider using vinegar. When sprayed directly onto grass weeds, vinegar can be as effective as some of the strongest chemical treatments. Unfortunately, as with any post-emergent care, spraying vinegar on weeds can also cause damage to the grass that surrounds it. To avoid damage to your grass you must be very careful to spray only onto the weeds themselves.
3. Boiling water
The cheapest way to remove grass weeds from your lawn is already found in your home, and there is an endless supply available in your kitchen sink. Boiling water can be an extremely effective way of getting rid of weeds that have already popped up in your lawn. Dousing a weed in boiling water will cause it to die quickly, and it is less damaging to your lawn than the strong chemical treatments that are found in stores. Unfortunately, stubborn weeds treated with boiling water may return – if this is the case a stronger approach is required.
4. Manual removal
One sure-fire way to remove weeds from your lawn is to pull them out manually. This is certainly one of the more time-consuming methods of grass weed removal, but by pulling weeds manually you can ensure that the entire plant is removed – roots and all. To maximize the chance of getting the entire weed out of the ground, grab the plant firmly at its base. If the root is not attached when you pull, mark the spot and keep an eye out for new growth. When this new growth appears try loosening the dirt around the plant before pulling.
5. Nutrient deprivation
Though they don’t require as much to survive, weeds need nutrients to grow just like any other plant. By depriving the weeds of these nutrients you can cause them to die out with very little effort. One easy way to do this is to remove light sources, by covering the site of the weed with topsoil or newspaper. Without any exposure to light, the weed has very little chance of survival. If attempting nutrient deprivation, make sure to check on the weed often by lifting up the newspaper or soil to see if any new growth has occurred.
Some especially stubborn weeds may be able to survive even without access to light. In these cases another method will need to be employed. It may take several days for this approach to work, but if you still haven’t seen any progress at the end of a week you should move to another method before the weeds have a chance to spread.