3 Ways to Dispose of Weeds

Weeds in the ground.
What You'll Need
Rake
Compost thermometer
Compost bin
Organic waste disposal bin
Black plastic bag
Bucket of water
Shredded newspaper
What You'll Need
Rake
Compost thermometer
Compost bin
Organic waste disposal bin
Black plastic bag
Bucket of water
Shredded newspaper

You have removed weeds from your garden, keeping your own plants safe and healthy while at the same time making your garden tidy and attractive. Think you are done? Think again. Weeds only get to be weeds because they grow quickly and easily. Proper weed disposal is important to prevent the weeds you destroyed from returning to invade your garden time and time again. Here are some options you should consider when you need to get rid of weeds permanently.

1. Trash

Tossing your weeds in the trash—or better yet, the organic waste disposal bin—is the easiest way to get rid of them. However, if done incorrectly, simply throwing weeds away after removing them from the ground can still scatter their seeds, leaving you right back where you started — with a garden full of weeds.

In order to permanently dispose of weeds in the trash, you must first find a way to completely destroy all seeds that the weeds have produced. The easiest, most natural, and least resource intensive way to do this is as follows.

Rake up all of your weeds, making sure to not leave any behind. Put them in a black plastic bag immediately and seal it tightly. Now, leave them in direct sunlight. The garbage bag will collect heat and leave everything inside both too dried out and too cooked to grow. Once the bag has been in the sun for roughly a month, you can safely dispose of it.

2. Compost

Weeds are organic waste, right? So if you have a compost heap, dead ones should be a perfect addition? Unfortunately, it is far from that simple. Weeds can potentially live happily in your compost heap, or give off their still fertile seeds which can end up back in your garden.

However, the threat from composting weeds is usually exaggerated. Though composting weeds incorrectly can cause problems, with planning and proper technique composting weeds is perfectly viable.

First, as a test, you should make a separate compost bin just for weeds. Get a compost thermometer and use it to measure the heat of your weed compost pile — 100 degrees Fahrenheit should kill most weeds.

If your weed compost heap reaches temperatures that high, and your regular one does too, you should be fine. If you are successful, your next batch of compost can have weeds mixed in. Wait one to two months before reintroducing the composted weeds to your garden.

3. Bonfire

Burning weeds is probably the worst solution, but it is fast and thorough, assuming you have materials on hand.

Choose an area far from any buildings, structures, or flammable materials. Clear away any plants and have a bucket of water on hand. Keep your fire small and do not use any flammable materials to start it. If you must, using some shredded newspaper as kindling is fine.

Once you are finished, be thorough in making sure your fire is completely extinguished. Either stamp out any embers or pour water on them.

Ways to Dispose of Weeds FAQ

What is the quickest and easiest way to get rid of weeds?

If you want to kill weeds very quickly and with pretty minimal effort, boil some water and pour it directly on the weeds. Exercise extreme caution while doing this because boiling water can burn your skin, too.

Even the steam from boiling water can burn you, so beware of splashing. Wear protective clothing, gloves, and safety glasses.

Plants get burned by water, too, so this act will scorch the roots and ruin the plant. Some particularly strong weeds may need a couple more applications of boiling water but they will also eventually die.

Can you burn weeds after pulling?

Whether or not you can burn weeds depends on local ordinances and laws in your neighborhood. In many rural areas, it is perfectly legal to burn weeds and yard waste but in many cities, this is actually illegal.

Whether or not you should burn weeds is a different matter and the answer to this is that you should not. Many invasive plants, including poison ivy and poison oak, release toxic fumes when they are burned, which could lead to respiratory problems in humans and animals.

Can weeds be composted?

Weeds rob nutrients from other plants, so they are quite densely packed with the rich stuff that makes for good compost. However, the last thing you want in your compost pile is a bunch of weed seeds because they will certainly try to take root here and potentially spread, making your weed problem worse instead of solving it.

What kills weeds naturally?

You can kill weeds using common household items. Mix about a cup of white vinegar with half a cup of salt and a few drops of liquid soap.

Get the formula good and mixed together and place it in a spray bottle. Apply it directly to weeds to naturally kill them.

How do I stop weeds from growing back?

Weeds rush to fill in bare areas of the lawn, growing where grass and other plants are not growing. So after you remove a lot of weeds, you're left with a lot of space for new weeds to grow.

Prevent this by completely covering bare areas of the lawn, either with mulch or landscape fabric. Weeds cannot grow where they cannot reach the surface of the soil.