How to Apply Corn Gluten Herbicide

How to Apply Corn Gluten Herbicide Information

By Josie Borlongan, Garden Guides Contributor Corn gluten meal, the filler in many dog foods, can help fertilize your lawn and garden and suppress the growth of new weeds simultaneously. It is all-natural, organic and safe to use. Corn gluten meal is a byproduct of processing corn to make corn starch and corn syrup. It is generally sold as a golden yellow meal or as light brown granules. Corn gluten meal prevents sprouting seeds from developing normal roots. This does not directly kill the seedlings but makes them susceptible to dehydration if the soil gets dry. Established plants are not affected. Corn gluten is best applied about the time weeds start germinating in your area and again in late summer or early fall.

Ingredients and Supplies

* 20 pounds corn gluten meal for every 1,000 square feet
* Any garden spreader


* Fill spreader with dry gluten meal.
* Apply evenly; spread the gluten over your lawn, then spread it again at right angles.
* Water thoroughly
* Hold off on fertilizers for two to four weeks. Since corn gluten provides a good dose of nitrogen, adjusting your fertilizer program is a must.
* Refrain from sowing seeds for six months.
* Reapply every year.
* Weed population should decrease over two to three years.

Vegetable Garden or Flower Beds:
* Fill spreader with dry gluten.
* Apply evenly; work the meal into the top 3 inches of soil.
* Water thoroughly.
* Adjust your fertilizer program by holding off on fertilizers for 2 to 4 weeks.
* Refrain from sowing seeds in the area for six months.
* Reapply every year
* Be patient. Weeds should decrease in population over 2 to 3 years.


Corn gluten is a great choice in the emergence of:
* Velvetleaf (Abutilon theophrasti)
* Creeping bentgrass (Agrostis palustris)
* Redroot pigweed (Amaranthus retroflexus)
* Common lamb's quarters (Chenopodium album)
* Orchard grass (Dactylis glomerata)
* Smooth crabgrass (Digitaria ischaemum)
* Large crabgrass (Digitaria sanguinalis)
* Barnyard grass (Echinochloa crusgali)
* Couch Grass (Elytrigia repens)
* Wooly cupgrass (Eriochloa villosa)
* Catchweed, Bedstraw, Goosegrass (Galium aparine)
* Perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne)
* Black medic (Medicago lupulina)
* Annual bluegrass (Poa annua)
* Buckhorn Plantain (Plantago lanceolata)
* Purslane (Portulaca oleracea)
* Curly dock (Rumex crispus)
* Giant foxtail (Setaria faberi)
* Yellow foxtail (Setaria lutescens)
* Green foxtail (Setaria viridis)
* Black nightshade (Solanum nigrum)
* Shattercane (Sorghum bicolor)
* Dandelions (Taraxacum spp.)

* In trials, corn gluten meal reduced crabgrass by 91 percent over a three year period. However, there is no post emergence weed control with any corn gluten meal product, therefore, weeds already established will not be controlled.


Corn gluten will not harm grass, plants and existing weeds.

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