One of the horrors for every gardener is seeing their garden or lawn overridden by weeds. This must be a gardener’s worst nightmare! How to clear the weeds from such a garden is something every gardener should know. This article addresses that.
Whether it’s using light deprivation, manual labor, weeding tools, and machinery, or weed killers, you can clear your weed-filled garden permanently. It will be looking beautifully healthy with a little patience and some good old-fashioned hard work!
There are always things you can do because there are answers to every problem. But when things are this bad, you have to approach the situation with great care and patience to get the job done correctly – not necessarily immediately.
For gardeners, having weeds all over their garden or grounds is a painful sight to see. That’s because they destroy the beauty of the property and the green of the lawn. They even steal water and nutrients from your plants.
Thankfully, there are already practical steps in clearing a garden full of weeds. We will explain to you how to destroy these weeds. So scan through this article and find out what works for you.
You have exerted effort in trying to make your garden beautiful. Hence, being merciless on the weeds destroying your hard work and abolishing beauty from your garden is the correct reaction, and you should start on this immediately.
Generally, there are four methods in clearing a garden full of weeds, and we will discuss them individually.
Remember, every weed is different, and so you have to try other methods to eliminate the kind of weed infesting your area. You can try any of these methods and see if it does the job.
1. Light Deprivation
A natural way of killing weeds is by blocking the sunlight to starve them of nutrients from the sun. Plants need to have access to sunlight to grow, and the same is valid for weeds.
This option is best for a large garden because you will only cover the grass instead of manually removing them, which can be exhausting to do in a large garden.
The concept of light deprivation is simple, and you can do this with the help of the mulching technique.
Mulching Can be Used
Originally, mulching is used to keep the soil moist and cool, but because it covers the earth, it can also prevent sunlight from penetrating the ground, thus preventing weed growth.
There are two kinds of mulching: the organic approach and the inorganic approach.
Organic mulching uses organic compost, usually made up of hay, straw, freshly cut forage, and cover crops. They can suppress weed germination and growth.
However, the downside of organic mulching is that it can let in some rays of light passing through the layers.
Thus it has to be applied at reasonable rates. Otherwise, the weeds will continue growing.
It Depends on the Size of Your Lawn
Moreover, it depends on the size of your garden or lawn that is infected by weeds. In some cases, organic mulching might not be ideal for large properties because of the limited organic material available to cover the area.
When this happens, the organic mulching is thin and therefore allows sun rays to pass through them. It destroys the purpose of mulching because the weeds will still be able to grow.
Black Film of Polyethene Is Effective
Consider using inorganic mulching that uses a plastic sheet made up of a black film of polyethylene.
This type of mulching is suitable for the large garden because you can quickly spread the sheet, and it can effectively kill the weeds underneath because it does not allow sun rays to pass through them.
However, some gardeners get annoyed seeing a black plastic sheet lying on the garden.
The best way to solve this is by putting organic mulching over the plastic film just enough to cover the black plastic.
It doesn’t matter if the cover is thin for as long as it masks the appearance of the black plastic film; everything is fine.
The problem with putting organic mulch on top of the black plastic is that weeds will grow on the organic mulch. You have to keep an eye on it from time to time and pluck the weeds out if you see one.
2. Manual Labor
The second method is by pulling the weeds manually with your hands. But there are preliminary precautions when doing this method, or else you will not get rid of the weeds.
First, you need to have the essential tools for this one, like gardening gloves, a weed knife, a small digging fork, and maybe a trowel:
• Gardening gloves prevent your hands from bacterial infection and from blisters when pulling up the roots.
• A weed knife helps you uproot the weeds quickly.
• A small digging fork helps you dig down into the soil and around the roots.
• A trowel helps you scoop up the roots so that the whole weed is removed.
Once you have these four primary tools, the next thing you have to do is to follow the proper procedure of manual weed pulling.
Don’t just Pull the Weeds
When manually pulling the weeds, you don’t just reach them and pluck them out as fast as you can. In reality, this does not kill the weeds because you only break the weed leaving the roots underneath to germinate again.
This is probably the reason why you still see weeds growing in your garden despite pulling them out a week ago.
The Right Way of Weed Removing
The proper way of manually pulling them is by gently taking hold of the weeds to prevent breaking them and pull them up and out of the ground.
However, hard soil is different when the weeds cannot be uprooted by simply pulling them out, especially if the roots deeply penetrate the ground. This is when you have to use your weed knife and small gardening fork to loosen the soil.
Whilst holding them, using the weed knife to cut down the sides, and a small fork and trowel, dig your way down to the roots and, making sure you have all of the roots exposed, gently remove the whole weed.
Do not strike too close to the weed because it will cut the roots from underneath. It is best to dig 2 inches away from the weed to loosen the soil without breaking the weed.
This is a simultaneous process, so while digging with the fork, you should also begin to pull the plants gently until they are entirely removed from the soil.
Repeat the process with other weeds until you remove all of them.
The manual pulling method is only effective for small gardens or lawns. It is incredibly exhausting to do this with an acre of land. In such a case, consider using a different method or bring in some professionals to do the job for you.
3. Try Using Weeding Tools and Machine
When manually pulling and mulching does not work, the next thing you can try is weeding tools and machines. There are several options to choose from, and some of them are listed below:
• Weed Torch
A weed torch is a machine that uses flame and gas to burn the weeds down. This is a perfect alternative to kill weeds without the use of herbicides. The weed torch works by burning the weeds until they are completely dehydrated and eventually dies.
However, weed torch is only applicable to green weeds because dry weeds will catch fire, and it might cause damage to the neighborhood.
Before using a weed torch, consult your local authorities first to see if there are existing rules that prohibit the use of weed torch.
• Weed Steamer
The alternative to a weed torch is the weed steamer that only uses hot steam to kill the weeds. This tool works perfectly for people who are scared of fire, and it does the same job with a weed torch.
Use the tool to pressurize the weeds with hot steam; this will prevent photosynthesis, killing the weeds in no time.
• Gas Hand Mowers
If you want an easy way to get rid of the weeds, you might consider using a gas hand mower. They are powerful enough to cut overgrown grass in your area.
When using a gas hand mower, always inform your neighbors to be aware of the noise.
The problem with gas hand mowers is they don’t remove the roots, so the weeds will re-germinate and grow again. To solve this problem, you will have to use either organic or inorganic mulching to deprive the roots of sunlight. This method will cause them to die eventually.
Garden hoe is a weeding tool that breaks the weeds as you strike the soil. A hoe can penetrate deeply into the ground enough to uproot the weeds.
After using a hoe, remove the weeds thoroughly and make sure the roots are taken out as well.
• Weeding Rake
A weeding rake is quite different from a regular rake which has the primary purpose of loosening the soil. A weeding rake function by removing the weeds when scratching them across the earth.
The problem with this tool is there is no guarantee that it uproots the weeds so you have to use either organic or inorganic mulch to ensure that weeds will not germinate.
There are other weeding tools and machines out there that are not mentioned in this article.
The ones mentioned in this article are the most obvious yet effective tools and machines to clear the weeds in your garden.
It all boils down to your preference and lawn size.
4. Use Weed Killers
The last method we have is by using weed killers.
This is perhaps the easiest yet the expensive method of clearing weeds, depending on the size of your garden or lawn. Weed killers are your last go-to if all other methods fail to clear your garden of weeds.
The most significant advantage of using weed killers is the time and effort efficiency. You simply apply the herbicides over the large swathes of weed, and after that, all you have to do is wait.
However, the disadvantage of using weed killers is it disrupts the balance of the ecosystem in your garden.
Sometimes, weed killers can cause stunted plant growth, plant contamination, and killing some of your plants in the garden.
This is the reason why some gardeners do not opt for weed killers. But if you want to thoroughly cleanse your garden and start over again, then using weed killers is fine.
Ask For Professional Help
Honestly, you don’t have to perform the weed clearing operation by yourself. There are already professionals out there that can do the job for you. They have weed cleaning services available at any level.
You can search for them online or ask a friend for help to find the best company that will handle the weed problems for you.
Weed Control Strategy
After clearing the weeds in your garden, the next important step you have to do is to make a weed control strategy to minimize weed growth. You don’t want to see another scenario of weeds overriding your garden, so it is best to set preemptive measures.
Every garden and weed is different. Hence, the control strategy should be fitted according to the needs of your garden and the type of weeds that grow there.
Here are the things you should consider in your weed control strategy:
• Observe the kind of weed and their life cycle to know when they will emerge.
• The type of weed you want to control since there are edible weeds.
• The type of plants in your garden to know what weed killers to use that won’t destroy the plants. Once you determine the safe weed killer for your garden, occasionally apply it to create a protection that prevents weed growth.
• Minimize tilling because it exposes weed seeds to the sunlight and encourages weed growth.
• Remove weeds regularly. Always have the diligence to look for the presence of weeds after you water them. This will make the pulling easier.
• Before planting, always perform the mulching technique to ensure that all weeds are dead so you won’t have to deal with them while growing your plants.
The Recovery of An Overgrown Lawn
If you have a lawn that has become overgrown, it will be a long process to get it back under control:
• Using a trimmer, cut back the lawn.
• Next, remove the grass using a rake.
• Your lawn will then go into shock, and you should leave it alone for about two weeks minimum before doing any further work on it.
• Once it has recovered, it will be a brownish yellow but don’t worry.
• Don’t feed the lawn no matter how great the temptation! This is important because the grass will be long and rambling due to the fight for the light. If you feed it now, you could make it worse.
• Instead, you can now start to mow the lawn. This will help to kill off any remaining weeds. It will also encourage the grass to grow thicker instead of upwards and sprawling.
• If there are bare patches, you can reseed those areas. When reseeding, make sure you match the seeds with the existing grass on your lawn.
Now you’ve overcome your worst nightmare; you can see that with patience and a little hard work from yourself, your garden can become beautiful again.
It can have the most curb appeal and give you the finest of views from your windows.
Your garden is your pride and joy. Keep it that way by following the easy methods set out in this article. That way, you’ll always be able to enjoy your gorgeous garden!