Herbicides for Spinach

When it comes to vegetable gardening, certain pests will always be a problem. Weeds and other unwanted vegetation are among the most common. If you are growing spinach on your landscape, using an herbicide to get rid of surrounding weeds would be very beneficial. It is important to know that not every herbicide gets rid of every weed. Herbicides for spinach are broken down into three categories to choose products from.

Herbicides Before Planting

Apply herbicide before planting your spinach to deter weeds from the start. Pre-plant fumigant herbicides kill weeds (as well as soil-borne diseases and nematodes) that germinated after you tilled the planting area, according to the University of California Integrated Pest Management program. You must wait at least two weeks before planting any spinach after the application. Pre-plant foliar herbicide kills weeds as they germinate, and contain either pelargonic acid, which has contact action only, and is most effective on young seedlings; or glyphosate which has systemic action and is effective on established weeds. The third group, preplant incorporated, consists of herbicides that control weed seeds as they germinate and should be applied right before planting spinach.

Herbicides After Planting

You can still use herbicides on your spinach beds after they are planted or in the growing stages. Postplant pre-emergent treatments are applied after planting but just before the seed germinate. Postemergent treatments are applied when the spinach is in the seedling stage or older.

Special Weed Herbicides

A couple extra-stubborn weeds require to be treated specifically. For example, burning nettle is difficult because it cannot be removed by hand and is hard to control even with pre-emergent herbicide. Little mallow is usually in coastal spinach gardens, but can overpower the spinach quickly if left to its own devices. It is best controlled with an herbicide before the weed germinates, which can be difficult to catch. Chickweed, a winter annual weed, is marginally controlled with pre-emergent herbicides but seems to grow back quickly. Sheperd's purse is in the mustard family and can be difficult to control because it is so persistent. A pre-emergent or post-emergent herbicide can be used on the weed.

Keywords: controlling weeds, growing spinach, vegetable herbicides

About this Author

Lauren Wise has more than eight years' experience as a writer, editor, copywriter and columnist. She specializes in food, wine, music and pop culture. Her writing has appeared in various magazines, including "Runway," "A2Z," "Scottsdale Luxury Living" and "True West." Wise holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Arizona State University.