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Weed Wars

Aren’t weeds the eternal gardening problem? We create a new bed, plant new grass or spend hours pulling up weeds only to find new ones taking root a week later.

Don’t feel discouraged if this happens to you. As a gardener you’ll always have to contend with unwanted vegetation of all kinds in your landscape.

Before you wage war on the weeds, stock your arsenal with the following:

  • Weed barriers — Cardboard, newspaper and permeable cloth are your best defense when creating a new bed. This method usually buys you some time, perhaps years, before weeds inevitably break through.
  • Organic solutions — Vinegar and orange oil work well to destroy weed foliage. Many synthetic chemicals are effective as well but must be handled with extreme caution.
  • Mulch — Always a top choice for slowing the rate of weed growth, mulch not only reduces soil moisture loss but also acts as a buffer preventing new weed seeds from landing in and germinating in the soil. It works best when applied two to three inches thick.

If you’re creating a new raised bed, be sure to purchase good quality, weed-free soil. When buying in bulk, ask about pasteurized soil choices. These will usually be weed-free and have been processed in such a way that existing weed seeds are destroyed.

Erin Conant
Erin Conant
Erin Conant has a passion for all things related to plants. Our former SAWS conservation consultant is now at home with her family passionately establishing their own urban farm and spreading the word of water conservation.
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