A Natural Method for Killing Weeds

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With kids and pets, a natural way to kill weeds is your best bet. This method is also more economical than commercial weed killers. You may already have these items around the house. It probably only costs $1.00 a bottle to make.

This homemade product is best used on weeds that come up between bricks / pavers on patios. If used on a lawn or garden it will kill grass and flowers / vegetable plants. It cannot discriminate between weeds and other plants.

I use a cocktail of (5%) white vinegar, plain table salt and liquid dish soap to quickly kill weeds on my brick patio. Acetic acid in the 5% vinegar and the salt are both very good at drawing moisture from weeds. This causes death to the plants.

Stick to 5% white vinegar. Do NOT use the stronger vinegars available. You can find 5% white vinegar in the food section of the grocery store. Dish soap acts as a surfactant. The soap helps the vinegar / salt solution to stick to the leaves.

Applied on a warm, sunny day, the results of this homemade weed killer spray will be obvious in a few hours. Total death in a few days.
Time: 15 MinutesCost: $1Difficulty: Easy
Take a plain empty plastic spray bottle. Add 1 tablespoon to 1/2 cup plain table salt. Then pour in 5% white vinegar. Store brand is fine. Then add a squirt of your favorite dishwashing liquid.
  • a natural method for killing weeds
This solution is pet safe, after it dries.   The 5% white vinegar and salt can burn paws, so it is best to wait unit the solution is dry to welcome them in the area. It will also hurt the eyes if the spray gets into them.
Check the label for 5% acetic acid. Do NOT use stronger. Stronger vinegar may damage your skin, and the surface you are spraying.
  • a natural method for killing weeds
Store brand salt is fine. You may use Iodized salt or plain salt. After adding a squirt of dishwashing liquid (your favorite) - shake the bottle to mix thoroughly. It should have a slight color, from the dishwashing liquid.
  • a natural method for killing weeds
Spray the solution on the weeds. If you have any open sores on your hands, the solution may burn - so wear gloves.
Totally saturate the weed. You may notice that this solution may clean green and dirty areas of the patio.
I did this application on a warm spring sunny day. After 1 1/2 hours, the weeds are already dying.
  • a natural method for killing weeds
Weed dying after 1/1/2 hours. Weeds will continue to die over a few days. For tougher weeds, a second application may be necessary.

When weeds die and turn brown, they can be easily swept up. If you leave them they will disintegrate and blow away!

Suggested materials for this project:

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  • William
    William Burbank, IL
    on Apr 20, 2018

    Good tip. Will have to give this a try. I usually just use a mixture of salt and water in a garden sprayer and saturate the weeds. The dish liquid would work as a suspension system. I wouldn't know what the vinegar does but sounds good.

    • Lisa S.
      Lisa S. Wilmington, DE
      on Apr 20, 2018

      The vinegar is an acid.

        • Amy Rohde
          Amy Rohde Fawn Grove, PA
          on Apr 25, 2018

          Traditional Vinegar Recipe

          1 gallon of store-bought vinegar

          1/4 cup of salt (Morton’s, etc)

          1 teaspoon of dish soap (you can use an organic soap if you like – it just helps the solution adhere to the weed’s leaves.

          Mix all ingredients and use within 7 days for maximum effectiveness