No one wants to fill their yard with smelly and dangerous chemicals, but no one wants to look at a bunch of weeds, either. You don't have to contaminate your soil, however, to get the beautiful yard you want. In fact, you probably have multiple weed killers sitting in your kitchen right now that are just as benign to you as they are deadly to weeds. Learn how to use them and you can have weed-free landscaping, no chemical pesticides necessary.
Prime Your Weeds
Before applying any of your kitchen-made weed killers to unwanted plants, mix a couple drops of liquid dish soap into two cups of water. Soap sticks to plants and helps to break down their natural protective barriers, which makes weeds more vulnerable to the weed-killing mixtures you create in your kitchen. Spray this soapy solution directly onto weeds you hope to destroy, and then come back and apply any one of the following natural weed-killing mixtures to the plants you need to eliminate.
Dry Them Out
Add one tablespoon of ordinary rubbing alcohol to two cups of water to make a natural weed killer. Spray this mixture directly onto weeds, and the solution will naturally dry weeds out. The weeds will die all the way down to the roots once their ability to stay moist has been taken away.
Roast Them Alive
Don't worry—weeds can't feel pain so you don't have to feel guilty about using boiling water to get rid of them. The next time you're boiling water to make tea or dinner, save a little of it and take it right outside. Pouring boiling water directly on weeds will burn the roots and fry the plant, killing it almost instantly. This method should only be used for driveway and sidewalk weeds rather than those in garden beds and landscaped areas because the hot water may be absorbed by surrounding plants and kill more than your weeds. Note: Always handle boiling water with care so you don't damage yourself in the process.
Use Natural Acids
Acidic ingredients are commonly included in weed-killing pesticide formulas, but you can get the same effective results without the chemical cocktail. Mix two tablespoons of plain lemon juice into one cup of white vinegar to make your own natural weed-killing solution. Put the mixture in a spray bottle and apply it directly to the weeds you want to get rid of. The natural acids will safely kill the weeds without damaging the soil and plants around them.
Get Out the Baking Soda
Yes, it really can do everything. Not only can baking soda be used to clean everything from sinks to your own teeth, but it will kill weeds when used properly. Use about one teaspoon of baking soda for every weed you'd like to eliminate. Coat weeds completely with baking soda, but pay particular attention to the stem. Baking soda will smother weeds and kill them off at the roots. You can also prevent future weed growth with it. Sprinkle baking soda into sidewalk cracks, near the edges of the driveway and landscaped areas, and other places that seem to be weed-prone. The baking soda will prevent new weed growth.
A Word About Salt
The plant-killing properties of salt are extremely well-known. Sewing salt in fields (also known as "salting the earth") has historically been a tactic used in warfare because it kills plants, and therefore the ability of the city's people to stay alive. As such, many homemade weed cocktails include a pinch of salt or highly salty liquids, such as pickle juice. Because salt can damage the soil and prevent future plant growth, however, this tactic should be used sparingly if at all.
Natural Weed Control
Use what’s in your kitchen to start naturally controlling weeds, and leave those harmful chemical pesticides on the shelf at the store. Make your own Earth-friendly weed-killers instead, and make your garden and landscaping areas as pleasant as you want them to be. Natural weed control is possible, and it’s easy with just a few common kitchen items.