6 Homemade Herbicides That Kill the Weeds Without Killing the Earth

Posted by on May 12, 2017 in Environment with 10 Comments
CC BY 3.0 Jim Bauer

CC BY 3.0 Jim Bauer

By Derek Markham | Tree Hugger

It’s been said that weeds are just plants whose virtues have not yet been discovered, but if you’re tired of waiting to find out what those virtues are, you might want to use one of these homemade herbicides instead of the chemical versions.

Many common weeds can be either food, medicine, or unwanted visitors to the garden, depending on the varieties and how you view them. But if you’ve eaten all of them you can, and you still need to get rid of weeds in your yard, it’s far better for you, your soil, and your local waterways to choose a more environmentally friendly herbicide than those commonly found in the home and garden center.

Related Article: Could New Weed-Killing Robot Render Herbicides Unnecessary? We Hope So!

Strong chemical herbicides, pesticides, and fungicides can end up polluting our drinking water, our groundwater, and surface water, so it’s important to consider the longer term effects of using them, and to instead make the choice to use a gentler herbicide, which won’t contribute to the larger issue of water contamination.

The most environmentally friendly way to get rid of weeds is to pull them up, dig out the roots, let them dry in the sun, and then add them to a compost or mulch pile. However, that method can also take quite a bit of time, so if you’re looking for a quicker way to effectively get rid of weeds, one of these homemade herbicides might be the way to go.

[N.B.: Just because these are ‘natural’ or homemade herbicides, that doesn’t imply that they couldn’t harm your soil, your garden, or your person. An herbicide is a "substance that is toxic to plants,” which means that your garden plants are just as susceptible to these treatments, they could have a negative effect in the soil if applied in large quantities, and they may cause human injuries if misused.]

1) Drench with boiling dihydrogen monoxide:

This homemade herbicide is by far the simplest to prepare, and unless you happen to spill boiling water on yourself, is also the least harmful to both people and the environment. Simply bring a big pot of dihydrogen monoxide (that’s a fancy way of saying water) to boil on your stove, and then pour it over the leaves and stems of the weeds you wish to get rid of. Using boiling water is an effective method for killing weeds in places such as sidewalk or driveway cracks, or over a larger area that you’d like to replant after the weeds are gone, as it doesn’t leave any residue or have any harmful long-term effects. As with all of these homemade herbicides, it’s still important to only apply it to the plants you wish to get rid of, as they can easily also kill your flowers or vegetable plants.

Related Article: Monsanto’s #1 Herbicide Directly Linked to Chronic Disease Spike

2) Light ’em up with fire:

The application of direct heat to the foliage of weeds will cause the plants to immediately wilt, and repeated applications will kill any leaves that may resprout from the roots. A flame-weeder tool is available from home and garden stores, which allows you to apply flame and heat directly to the weeds without catching the whole neighborhood on fire. In fire-prone areas, weeding with flame needs to be done with some extra precautions, as dried weeds and grasses can easily catch fire and get away from you.

3) Douse with sodium chloride:

Sodium chloride, or common table salt, is an effective herbicide, and has some historical notoriety for possibly being used to lay waste to the soils of conquered peoples (salting the fields prevents plants from growing there). Because salt can have a detrimental effect in the soil, it’s important to only apply it directly to the leaves of the weeds, and to not soak the soil, especially in garden beds with other, more desirable, plants. Dissolve 1 part salt in 8 parts hot water (it can be made stronger, up to 1 part salt to 3 parts water), add a small amount of liquid dish soap (to help it adhere to the leaf surfaces), and pour into a spray bottle. To apply, cover or tie back any nearby plants you don’t want to kill, then spray the leaves of the weeds with the solution. Be careful to not soak the soil, and keep this mixture away from cement sidewalks or driveways (it may discolor them). Multiple applications may be necessary.


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  1. 239351516422280@facebook.com' Dung Van says:

    Conscious Life News hi everybody, Conscious Life News. , Only 4 percent can pass questions, join quiz now…
    (y) join now — #wwwhplaycomv02

    good article: You don’t have to turn to toxic herbicides to kill your weeds. Here are a half a dozen ways to kilNews, Articles, and Information for Conscious Living on Planet Earth

  2. 1762752527303829@facebook.com' Salma Saady says:

    To kill your **weeds**

  3. 10153293690213666@facebook.com' Courtney Caroline says:

    Lindz Cullen

  4. 1468678173462499@facebook.com' Kuro Fox says:

    but no one should have to

  5. 10205278072786013@facebook.com' Jorian Berger says:

    Oh please! Oh please! Don’t kill the food for the bees!!
    Natural and free does the weed want to be, and certainly does a bee want to see!
    Keep your pesticides as a best aside! Don’t let the King’s lawn fool you into thinking that your nice uniform lawn deserves the water drinking! And who’s the real weed? why it’s you and me! IT’S YOU AND ME!

  6. 10208533124380713@facebook.com' Gail Kelly says:


  7. 965593663500207@facebook.com' Mark Krehbiel says:

    Don’t kill those dandelions. Eat Them! Every part is edible and has unbelievable nutrition and healing powers. Flowers and leaves work great in salads. Here is a great source on what to eat. And much of it will have far more nutrition than your dead food found in 90% of the grocery store. http://www.ediblewildfood.com/edible-weeds.aspx

  8. 10154309857052189@facebook.com' Sandra Savidge says:

    Ted Savidge

  9. 1667214156872548@facebook.com' Linda Hand says:

    Good. This. Is. What. We. Need

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