11 Natural Ways To Kill Weeds

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There’s something quite refreshing and lovely about waking up in the morning and looking out at the garden before starting the day. It envelops us in a sense of peace no matter when we look at it, whether it’s a casual glance or a couple of weekend hours as a break.

Do you find that now, instead of the plants you are nurturing, those pesky weeds have made their merry way into your garden? These weeds can cause serious damage to your plants, and we definitely don’t want another rendition of alien movies like Independence Day.

Although there are multiple ways to eradicate the weeds using harmful chemicals, they come with their own set of problems which would take longer to eradicate. This is why natural ways to kill weeds are the best. Without further ado, let’s go through the ways:

1. Manual Labor aka Construction Style

Let’s face it. Maintaining a garden already requires a bit of manual labor. Well, be ready to get your hands dirty again! A simple garden hoe or even a Japanese soil knife can be used to loosen the weeds from the soil. Then pull them by hand to ensure that the job is done. Then again, try this technique if you really have the patience and time.

Although it may seem like such a fuss over weeds and may take a while, like Yoda says, “Do or do not, there is no try!” 

A word of caution: Wear gloves to avoid accidentally transferring seeds elsewhere.   

2. Mulch

Remember that fragrantly fresh smell that felt like an explosion of nature had just taken place? That would be the lovely mulch, nourishing the plants. Mulch can be added as a layer on top of the ground to stop weeds from, well, weeding their way out. They provide a good cover for soil erosion and enrich the growth of the plants.

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An excessive amount of mulch can cause extreme dampness in the soil, and a limited amount will let weeds go supernova with their hostile takeover of existing plants.

3. Vinegar

Not only does it add a bit of oomph to your once bland salad, but it’s also a great weed remover. In a sprayer or pump bottle, mix 2 parts vinegar, 1 part water, and a few drops of dish soap.

Take precautions to make sure that when applied, the sun is out and there isn’t a lot of wind to avoid spraying on other plants.

4. Salt

Although we all agree that salt is necessary for our everyday diet, it can also kill weeds! In a spray bottle or pumper, mix 3 tablespoons of salt, and just enough warm water until the salt dissolves.

Spray it on the weeds carefully, since the salt dehydrates the plant, take care not to spray it in a place with high vegetation. It can be more commonly used on weeds growing in between stones on stone paths.

5. Boiling Water

A word to the wise: Don’t burn yourself by accident! (happens more often than you think). This is probably the simplest and cheapest technique of all. Boil a pot of water, go out into the garden and carefully pour the water over the weeds only. If possible use a metal strainer or funnel to focus the flow of water.

6. Weed Torch 

Imagine using a blowtorch over a sumptuous lemon meringue pie, and do the same using a weed torch on the weeds. It takes a bit of practice to use it, but you’ll get the hang of it. Use the torch on the weeds, until they wilt.

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Fear not, if you don’t have a weed torch, butane gas blow torch will also finish the job. This causes the water in the cells of the weeds to evaporate making them explode. Problem solved! Be careful not to use the torch on any poisonous plants as harmful, toxic gases will be released.

7. Corn Gluten

Even though corn is a crunchy treat eaten in many forms, the gluten by-product of corn (although not edible) is certainly useful. A healthy sprinkling of this gluten can prevent weeds in the first place.

It can be found as both pellets or powder, both of which are effective. It doesn’t affect the other plants, and actually increases the amount of nitrogen in them, which is necessary for avid plant growth.

8. Bleach

As a common household item, bleach is easy to come by. More commonly used in cleaning products, and even hair, it is also used to get rid of the evil weed infestation. Simply pour undiluted bleach onto the weeds.

Take care not to pour it onto the grass or other healthy plants, because the bleach will wilt them. After a day or so, when the weeds wilt, it is easy to pull them out manually, or just hack at them with a gardening hoe.

9. Newspaper

Usually, we use newspapers as fly swatters, and occasionally take a peek at the entertainment or sports section. Wet the newspaper (if you can bear parting with it) to prevent it from flying away and place it on top of the weeds. Basically, this prevents oxygen and sunlight from being absorbed by the soil, preventing the growth of weeds.

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10. Shower Curtain

Those handy dandy old shower curtains will be useful, so don’t throw them out! Place the shower curtain under a layer of mulch, to avoid any weeds from being pesky, and worming their way through! This can usually be done during the time you plan to landscape or use mulch as another form of weed control.

11. DIY Herbicidal Spray

Create your own herbicidal spray using salt, dish soap, and vinegar in equal parts. Spray this concoction ONLY on the weeds and be careful not to spray it onto the plants. This could cause them to wilt and die, ruining your prized petunias. 

So don’t go out spending extra money on harmful chemicals that will damage the weeds and your beautiful garden. Avoid collateral damage, and go the au-naturale route, opting for salt, a DIY herbicidal spray or bleach to remove those irritating weeds.

It doesn’t cost a lot of money, and with a bit of effort and time, those weeds won’t know what hit them.