Chemical-Free Weed Control: Five Methods You May Have Not Tried

Posted on: 20 April 2015

What is one of the worst things homeowners face? Weeds. Although weeds are not as devastating as a home repair, they can wreak havoc on your lawn and garden. There are plenty of ways to remove them, but most require chemicals.

If you want to banish weeds without chemicals, try one of these five methods:

1. Use Newspaper

If you want to kill weeds with virtually no added cost (given you subscribe to the newspaper) try laying down a thick layer of newspaper. You can use it as is, or you can shred it up. Either way, you will be applying a layer of the discarded paper to your lawn. For more effectiveness, use it as a layer in between your mulch.

The newspaper will block sunlight from reaching the soil, which will prevent pesky weeds from growing. It will also eliminate the oxygen in the soil, which will prevent new weeds as well as killing current weeds. As time goes on the mulch will disintegrate, which will provide a nice compost for future plants and flowers.

2. Apply Corn Gluten Meal

Another way to remove weeds is with corn gluten meal. The corn by-product is affordable and can be found at most grocery stores, making it a good option for most homeowners.

The meal in the product works to kill weeds by preventing germination, so seeds can't flourish into full-grown weeds. However, be careful when using it; as it is so effective, it may hurt any seedlings you plant into the ground. Don't worry though, it won't affect full-grown plants in your lawn.

3. Hot Water

If you want to banish weeds without much effort, try using hot water. Boiling tap water applied to the ground will kill any weeds—and their seedlings too. However, apply it sparingly and carefully. The boiling water can harm current plants, because it burns the plant and its root system.

4. Vinegar

White, distilled vinegar is also effective at removing weeds. Simply place the vinegar into a spray bottle and generously douse any weeds you have in your yard. You can also dump a jug of vinegar onto garden beds before planting to kill any weeds that might sprout later.

Although not harmful to the environment, vinegar can harm current plants. So do not apply the vinegar to any plants you want to keep. If you apply it to a garden bed, wait at least two days before transplanting to new plants to that area so that the soil has time to reach a safe PH balance.

5. Hand Pulling

Finally, you can use your hands to remove weeds. Although it isn't fun, it is very effective if done right. To properly remove weeds, grab ahold of the weed and firmly rip it up. Make sure you get all of the root system to prevent it from growing back.

Although these five methods work well to remove weeds, they are not foolproof. If you are still having weed issues, contact a residential weed control professional, like Snyder's Weed Control, for help. If you don't want to use chemicals, don't worry. Many weed control companies now offer "green" methods for weed control and removal.

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