I tried four homemade methods to ‘instantly’ kill my garden weeds

I tried four homemade methods to ‘instantly’ kill my garden weeds


Gardening tips: Four homemade hacks to kill garden weeds

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Weeds grow anywhere they have access to sunlight and moist soil, including on the lawn, around flower beds as well as on patios and hard surfaces. If not kept on top of, the problem can get out of hand, like it had done in my garden. Over the winter months it can be easy to let the garden rest and forget about all the weeds popping up. To tackle the unsightly weeds in my garden, I decided to use boiling water, lemon juice, salt and baking soda with white vinegar.

1. Boiling water

Gena Lorraine, gardening expert at Fantastic Service, told Express.co.uk: “Pouring boiling water on weeds can instantly kill them as well as any seeds that may be dormant in the soil.

“It’s brilliant for walkways, garden paths and driveways.” The transfer of heat energy onto the plant leads to the distortion of plant cells, causing it to die.

To try this hack, I simply boiled my kettle and poured it over the weeds, making sure to pour slowly and carefully to avoid splash back from the hot water.

The weeds instantly shrivelled up and started to die and after a week, they were easy to pull up and dispose of.

Gardeners wanting to try this hack should avoid using boiling water on lawn weeds or flower beds as it could inhibit growth.

2. Lemon juice

Any type of acidic compound is great at killing weeds, and the acid in the lemon juice can help to kill the weed fully due to the drying out process.

Similar to boiling water, gardeners shouldn’t use lemon juice if the weeds are close to other plants as it will kill most plants, making this ideal for pathway weeds.

For this hack, you can use fresh lemons or lemon juice from a bottle, which I used for ease as I had it already in the cupboard.

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I simply poured the lemon juice onto the weed, before leaving it for a week. This method worked really well and the weed had completely died and was shrivelled up, ready to be disposed of.

There are a variety of ways to use lemon as a weed killer including mixing it with white vinegar but I found it to work effectively on its own.

3. White vinegar and baking soda

Baking soda and white vinegar can make for an incredible weed killer, especially when mixed together to create a natural homemade solution.

It is the acidic nature of the white vinegar which makes it a great weed killer, combined with the high salt content of baking soda used to dehydrate the weed.

They do not pose a health risk, and are considered safer for the environment than other methods of weed killing.

To try this hack, I mixed one cup of baking soda along with two cups white vinegar and transferred the mixture into a spray bottle once mixed.

I then spritzed the weeds three to four times, making sure to target the entire weed, before leaving it to work.

I was hopeful for this hack to work well but unfortunately, it didn’t seem to work as well as I had thought it would have. However, it may have been the case that it just needed another spray of the mixture.

4. Salt and water

When salt is absorbed by plant root systems, it disrupts the water balance and causes the weed to eventually die and wilt and making the mixture at home is not hard.

For this hack, I simply dissolved some table salt into water, in a ratio of 1:2, making sure it was fully dissolved before using it.

I didn’t have a spare spray bottle to hand so I simply poured the mixture onto the weeds using a mug, making sure to coat it, before leaving it for a week.

After the week, the weed looked slightly dehydrated but definitely was still alive as it hadn’t shrivelled up or changed colour. This hack may have been more effective if I had used salt directly onto the weed, instead of diluting it in water.

Overall, the boiling water hack definitely worked the best, drying out the weed instantly, making it easy to pull up. It also hasn’t reappeared which is great, making it an extremely easy hack to perform at home.

I will definitely try the other methods though, to see if I need to make the ratio of ingredients different, or if I need to reapply regularly for them to work. 

If attempting any of these hacks, make sure to use them on hard surfaces, away from lawns and plants as well as children and pets.

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