How to Masterfully Manage Weeds in the Garden
Posted on June 28 2019
You may agree that one of the most notorious garden pests is technically not a pest, but rather a plant or group of plants. If you’re picturing dandelion flowers with pointed leaves right about now, then yes, you got it, we’re talking about weeds.
None of us want to see pesky weeds popping up near our healthy crops or among our flower beds. While it may seem impossible to fully rid your garden of weeds, there are a variety of methods you can use to manage their growth more effectively and prevent them from ever coming back.
Using the tips below, you just may be fully equipped for your next weeding session.
1. Apply a Natural Herbicide
You may find that a majority of conventional weed killing products are chock full of harmful ingredients that you want to keep away from your garden, especially if you’re trying to grow organically. One of our favorite weed remedies is Zinc Sulfate, which is a natural compound known to improve zinc deficiency in plants.
Our Zinc Sulfate is OMRI listed, certified organic, heavy metal free and can be sprayed onto the area of weed growth in your garden:
- Add two to three tablespoons of Zinc Sulfate to one quart of water. (One quart covers four feet).
- Spray the solution evenly over the soil where weeds are growing.
- Remove dead weeds.
- Reapply as needed.
2. Use Mulch
For all of the benefits mulch offers a garden, it is highly underrated. Mulch is any organic material that covers the surface of your soil such as:
- Grass Clippings
Aside from keeping the soil cool and helping it retain moisture, mulch also deprives weeds of light. And organic mulches, in particular, are known to host crickets and carabid beetles, which eat weed seeds.
If you’re looking for an affordable, multi-tiered approach that promotes soil health while discouraging weed growth, mulch is a great idea!
3. Do Not Disturb Your Soil
The weeds you see popping out of your soil are likely there because they received enough sunlight to trigger germination. Your garden contains weed seeds throughout, but many of them are deep inside your soil where they lack enough light to sprout. However, digging and cultivating surfaces these dormant seeds allowing the sunlight to penetrate just enough into the soil to reach the seeds, allowing them to grow.
The best course of action to take in this case is to only dig when necessary and immediately cover the disturbed area with plants or mulch.
4. Grow Plants Closely Together
In the same regard as using mulch to deter sunlight from eager weed seeds, growing your plants to fill gaps, is another strategy that may be useful to prevent weeds from sprouting. You just want to make sure that the plants you choose are fungus resistant since placing plants close to one another minimizes air flow and damp conditions are a breeding ground for fungus and mold diseases.
5. Smother Them
As harsh as it sounds, depending on the quantity of weeds you are dealing with, covering them with some type of barrier may be easiest. Placing a large sheet of plastic over the area of weeds will kill them off by removing their air supply, heating the soil, blocking the sun and preventing water from reaching their roots.
You could also opt to cover the weeds with cardboard and build a raised garden bed on top of the cardboard. This not only kills the weeds, but eliminates much of the backbreaking work that comes from manually removing weeds from the soil.
It's important to note that ideally, these two methods should be done on areas of the garden with no productive plant growth since we want to kill the weeds, not our crops and flowers.
Don't Let Weeds Get the Best of You
As mentioned previously, we know what a major pain weeds can be and it's easy to feel overwhelmed when you find them in your garden, but hopefully the above methods are helpful to you. And remember, one of the best ways to help your garden combat weed growth and you can achieve this by applying eco-friendly fertilizers that nourish your plants and soil.
Shop below to get started. Weeds won't stand a chance.