DIY Weed Killer for Natural Lawn Care
Commercial herbicides are fast and effective. They are readily available online and at garden centers, are easy to apply, and often target specific plants while not harming others. The problem is that they can also be quite expensive, bad for the environment, and harmful to your health.
Alternatively, there are also plenty of natural options you can choose from. Some organic and natural options are available commercially, but you can also make a DIY weed killer with products you probably already have in your pantry. These natural options are better for the environment and your health while also helping you save money.
How to Make and Use DIY Weed Killer
There may be plenty of commercial weed killers available at garden centers and online, but you can effectively kill weeds without the harsh chemicals by using products you probably already have or can easily make with simple recipes.
Here are seven ways to kill weeds in your yard without using toxic chemicals.
1. Manual Extraction
Pulling weeds by hand takes the most time and is hardest on your body, but it requires absolutely no products and is free. You do not need toxic weed killers or even organic concoctions when pulling weeds by hand, so this option is particularly eco-friendly and money-saving.
When you pull weeds by hand, be sure to remove the root as well. There are several types of weed-pulling tools you can use to make it easier to pull weeds manually. Looking into these may be particularly helpful for folks who have difficulty bending or kneeling.
2. Boiling Water
Boil water and pour directly on unwanted plants to remove weeds naturally. If you use boiling water to kill weeds in your natural grass lawn, be careful to pour the water just on the weeds. Boiling water can kill the surrounding grass.
Use this vodka weed killer recipe to kill weeds naturally:
- 2 cups water
- 1-ounce vodka
Few drops of natural dish soap
Mix these two ingredients in a spray bottle and head out to the yard to use this DIY weed killer on unwanted plants. Vodka encourages dehydration, so this will work best if you choose a sunny afternoon to apply this concoction. Spray the mixture directly on the weeds of unwanted plants, and avoid getting it on wanted plants. If you are removing weeds from your lawn, you can also wipe the mixture onto the leaves of weeds to make sure the vodka does not get on your grass blades.
Here is an easy borax weed killer recipe:
- 1-gallon water
- 5-ounces borax
Mix five ounces of borax into one gallon of water and put in a sprayer for easy application. Spray unwanted plants with the mixture, and be sure to avoid grass and desirable plants, since this is an indiscriminate killer. You will also want to make sure that you do not spray much borax on the soil, and you will need to wear protective clothing, gloves, and eyewear to protect your eyes and skin from the borax.
Vinegar is a tried-and-true weed killer preferred by many natural gardeners. You likely have vinegar with 5% acetic acid in your pantry or laundry room right now. This product is commonly used for a variety of household tasks, such as cleaning counters and brightening white laundry. This is not the best vinegar for killing weeds, but you can use it in a pinch. You will have greater success with vinegar with 10% or 20% acetic acid, which you can purchase online or at garden centers. Use a garden sprayer to easily apply your vinegar to weeds.
Make sure to avoid spraying grass or desired plants with vinegar, since it will kill them too. If you need to use vinegar as a DIY weed killer for weeds in your lawn, consider wiping it on the leaves of weeds to avoid accidentally spraying it on your grass. Be sure to wear gloves and long sleeves to keep the vinegar off your skin. You may need to repeat this process a few times to see success.
Cornmeal prevents seed germination, so it is a natural way to reduce weeds in your lawn and garden. Cornmeal also adds nutrients to the soil and attracts worms, so it offers additional benefits other than just preventing weed growth. Since it will prevent germination of any type of seed, it should only be used around grasses and other plants that are established.
7. Herbicidal Soap
Fill a spray bottle with vinegar (the household kind is fine for this) and add a teaspoon of dish soap and one-eighth to one-quarter cup of salt. Use this easy, DIY weed killer to spray and kill unwanted plants. It is best to do this on a sunny afternoon to help your herbicidal soap do its job faster. This is another indiscriminate vegetation killer, so be careful to only spray it on plants you do not want. Do not spray it on grass or wanted plants. You will also need to be careful to not get too much of this on soil where you plan to grow things in the future, since the salt content can ruin the soil for future plant growth.