Weeds can be a nightmare for any garden or lawn. You want your lawn to appear lush and healthy, but the presence of weeds can ruin the look of your grass. Beating weeds begins with prevention, followed by a number of control methods in order to keep the number of weeds in your lawn to a minimum. By following the right strategies, you can reduce the number of weeds in your lawn and achieve lush, green grass you’ll be proud to call your own.
How to Prevent Lawn Weeds
In order for weeds to take hold, there must be enough soil and nutrition for them to prosper. The most effective method for preventing lawn weeds is to crowd them out with thick, healthy grass – the grass will reduce any available space weeds may otherwise use to grow, allowing the grass to take over and keep potential intruders away.
Crowd Out Weeds with Healthy Grass
There are a number of methods you can use to improve the health of your grass, allowing it to become more capable of fighting away and crowding out weeds:
- Aerating your lawn is one of the most effective ways to achieve a thick, healthy turf which prevents weeds from growing. Lawn aeration helps reduce soil compaction, improves rooting and increases the resiliency of your lawn, among many other benefits.
- Fertilize your lawn in order to promote its health. Poorly fertilized grass can become thin and prone to weed invasions, which you can avoid by properly fertilizing your lawn according to its specific needs.
- Water your lawn deeply, but infrequently. Light waterings can cause your grass to grow shallow roots, allowing weeds like bluegrass, chickweed, and crabgrass to take hold. By watering very deeply, your grass will develop deeper, stronger roots which will allow it to fight against the presence of weeds.
- Avoid cutting your grass too short when you mow. Short grass can be more easily overcome by weeds, but long grass can effectively choke them out. You may have to cut your grass more often, but you’ll be able to effectively prevent weeds by keeping your grass at the right height.
- Understand weeds, and why they may be present. Some weeds can grow as a result of soil problems, which should be fixed in order to improve the look and health of your lawn. Make note of which weeds you commonly see in your lawn, and understand which conditions cause them to appear.
How to Control Lawn Weeds
Despite your prevention methods, weeds may still appear in your lawn. Once you’ve noticed the presence of weeds in your lawn, it’s important to control them by any means necessary before they become a more menacing issue.
Getting Rid of Weeds After They Emerge
Fortunately, there are a number of reliable methods you can use to control weeds after they’ve begun to emerge:
- Remove weeds by hand. Locate the weeds and pull them out by the root so they will not grow back. This method is most effective when used for small, manageable lawns, or in conjunction with other control tactics on this list.
- The cosmetic use of pesticides is now banned in most municipalities, and as a result organic weed sprays have emerged as a way to directly target weeds. Another natural alternative to pesticides is to create your own at home using white vinegar, salt, and soap.
- Suffocate weeds by using newspaper and garden mulch. Cover the weedy area of your lawn with newspaper, and cover the newspaper with mulch. This will suffocate the weeds by blocking out sunlight, while simultaneously retaining moisture in your soil.
- Use boiling water to scald lawn weeds. Boiling water will destroy the roots of weeds very effectively, allowing you kill them quickly and with great ease.
- If you have an area of your lawn covered with weeds but little grass, consider using salt as an option. By coating your weeds with salt, you will poison the soil they use to grow, killing them by the root. Unfortunately, this method will also poison the soil for any other plants you’d like to grow in the area, so use this method sparingly.
- Burn your weeds using a propane weed scorcher. Weed scorchers are available at most home improvement and garden stores, and they’re among the most effective methods of controlling weeds. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t actually set the weeds ablaze – by simply hovering the weed scorcher a safe distance above the weeds, you will evaporate their internal moisture, causing them to shrivel up and die.
Weeds can be a troubling sight for any homeowner, but with the proper prevention and control methods, you can effectively maintain a healthy, lush lawn. If weeds are beginning to take control of your lawn, contact Bur-Han today to learn more about your options for weed control.