How to Use Cleaning Chemicals to Kill Creeping Charlie


Creeping charlie, characterized by round leaves and yellow flowers, is an invasive weed that winds through grass and kills it. Creeping charlie is resistant to a number of herbicides. Any herbicide application has to be applied carefully to prevent killing the grass as well. Fortunately, a common household cleaner, borax, is the most effective at eradicating creeping charlie. Borax is a mineral salt containing boron that when applied at certain concentrations has a deadly effect on certain weeds. Borax is inexpensive, easy to apply and readily available at most home stores.

Step 1

Test a yard sprayer with plain water to adjust sprayer settings before using the borax solution.

Step 2

Make the borax solution. Dissolve 10 oz. of borax in 4 oz. of water in bucket. Mix this solution with a mixing utensil such as a paint stirrer in 2 1/2 gallons of water.

Step 3

Add the borax solution to the yard sprayer using a funnel to prevent spilling.

Step 4

Walk quickly with the sprayer, spreading solution evenly over the affected area. The solution will cover 1,000 square feet.

Step 5

Pull weeds when they have died, usually within 24 hours.

Tips and Warnings

  • Apply borax solution only at recommended concentration. Studies on the effects of boron on plants or human exposure are not yet complete. The solution should only be applied once a year to once every two years. Borax should not be used in gardens.

Things You'll Need

  • Borax
  • Herbicide sprayer
  • Funnel
  • Bucket
  • Mixing utensil


  • University of Minnesota Extension: Borax
  • Iowa State University: Borax on Ground Ivy
Keywords: creeping charlie, borax creeping charlie, kill weeds

About this Author

Sommer Sharon has a bachelor's degree in IT/Web management from the University of Phoenix and owns a Web consulting business. With more than 12 years of experience in the publishing industry, her work has included "Better Homes and Gardens," "Ladies' Home Journal," "MORE," "Country Home," "Midwest Living," and "American Baby." Sharon now contributes her editorial background by writing for several Internet publications.