Organic weed control focuses on optimizing the health of the lawn grass, and when necessary, physically removing the weeds by hand. Organic methods of weed control and prevention do not involve the use of lawn chemical treatments. Weeds are unwanted plants that take advantage of sparsely growing lawn areas. The best active defensive against existing and future weeds is a strong offense; a dense, healthy, well-maintained turf grass.
Selecting the right type of grass for the local environment increases the health, density and vigor of the turf grass. Healthy turf grass is able to choke out existing weeds and prevent future lawn weeds from maturing. Consider over-seeding the more sparsely growing lawn areas during the spring.
Cultural control involves maintaining optimal environmental conditions for the growth of lawn grass. Weeds thrive in infertile, compacted and poorly drained topsoil conditions. Fertilizing, aerating and watering the turf grass will boost growth and minimize opportunities for weeds to take hold.
Proper lawn mowing supports dense turf grass growth and chokes out weed growth. Top growth heights of 2 to 3 inches enable a deeper grass root system, which is more resistant to weed infestations. Sharp lawn mower blades create a cleaner cut that prevents unnecessary stress on the grass during mowing, improving lawn health. As an additional benefit, many broadleaf weeds are unable to survive in a frequently mowed lawn.
Existing weeds should be pulled from the lawn by hand. Pull the weeds from the root to ensure complete removal. As part of your cultural control, regularly inspect the lawn for new weed growth. Early detection and removal are important to keeping weeds at bay, as many weeds spread exponentially once initially established.