Chemical Alternatives Like Vinegar to Killing Weeds

Weeds seem grow well where other plants languish. They are survivors and many are native to the regions where they grow. Many people rely on chemical herbicides, but alternatives exist. They include vinegar and orange oil, nontoxic products can help to kill weeds and even save you time.

White Vinegar

Kill many types of weeds with 10 percent acidity white vinegar in a sprayer at full strength. Use this nontoxic product is on a hot sunny day. Repeat your application several times during the course of a week or two before you notice your weeds dying. When they have turned brown, pull them out by hand or use a hoe or rake to remove them.

Essential Oil of Orange

Add 1 oz of essential oil of orange to 1 gallon of 10 percent white vinegar for tough to kill weeds. Spray unwanted small plants with this solution when they are in direct sun. Repeat your application if necessary.

Rock Salt

Most plants can’t tolerate salt. If you sprinkle rock salt on the weeds that grow in the cracks of your driveway or cement pathways, they will soon die. Salt is not a good alternative for areas near plants that you value because it will leach into the soil and harm nearby plants.

Boiling Water and Oil

Boiling water will kill many weeds if you pour it directly onto their foliage and root zone. If you add ½ cup of cooking oil, such as canola, to each gallon of water, it helps kill your weeds. Do not to allow the boiling water to come into contact with any plants you do not want to kill. If you have areas that are at least several feet away from your valued plants, boiling water can be a good solution.

Keywords: weed control, natural herbicide, gardening vinegar

About this Author

Barbara Fahs lives on Hawaii island, where she has created Hi'iaka's Healing Herb Garden. Fahs wrote "Super Simple Guide to Creating Hawaiian Gardens," and has been a professional writer since 1984. She contributes to Big Island Weekly, Ke Ola magazine, GardenGuides and eHow. She earned her B.A. at UCSB and her M.A. from San Jose State University.