Whether its your yard, garden, or walkway, most homeowners know there are many choices when it comes to weed killers. These days, more and more people are turning to natural alternatives wherever possible. Luckily, there are a few wonderfully effective spot treatments you likely already have in your pantry.
Choosing a natural weed killer for pavers, sidewalks, and driveways has a few advantages. Not only is it eco-friendly and free of harsh synthetic chemicals, it can actually be quite a bit cheaper than some store-bought products.
Why are we recommending these solutions specifically for pavers? Two reasons:
1. They aren’t likely to damage the stone, cement, or brick your pavers are fashioned from.
2. They are so effective that they would damage surrounding vegetation if used in your lawn or garden.
In this article, we’re going to explore the 5 most effective natural weed killers for pavers, according to lawn care experts. But first, let’s clarify a couple of helpful preventative measures.
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If you’re thinking of installing a path of pavers, or even a stone foundation for a simple deck, you want to make sure the materials are installed properly, with very little space between them. As much as possible, the goal here should be “air-tight.” One way to prevent shifting is to dig up a shallow foundation and apply a bed of sand beforehand. Doing so helps absorb moisture and minor shifting in the ground.
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If you’ve already got pavers laid in your yard, the best thing you can do for weed prevention is simply keep them clean. Sweep regularly to avoid seeds and pods settling in between the stones. For a more thorough job, you may even use a leaf blower to clear out the crevices.
Natural Weed Killers
These are the 5 most effective methods of ridding your pavers of weeds that have sprung up between the stones. All of the ingredients involved are common kitchen items.
Perhaps this one seems almost too obvious to go on the list. But the truth is, when done effectively, hand-pulling weeds has always been one of the most effective forms of weed prevention.
For an easier job, saturate the area beforehand and let the water soak in. This makes the roots more pliable, and therefore easier to completely remove. Hand-pulling can be followed up, for safe measure, by any of the following suggestions.
That’s right! Good old-fashioned table salt is a great way to rid your pavers of persistent weed growth. It dries out the weeds, all the way from foliage to root system. This may be the longest-lasting remedy on the list, as you can go several weeks between applications.
Rather than sprinkling directly onto the ground, you can use a 3:1 mix of salt and water. Be careful not to use near grass or plants, and don’t use excessively. Subsequent runoff from a rainstorm could pull the saltwater into your lawn.
Also known as sodium bicarbonate, this household staple is known for its myriad uses. As a form of salt, its main method of action in killing weeds is to basically saturate and dehydrate them. Simply sprinkle it over the cracks and then sweep it in.
While this method is a bit less effective during the summertime, when most plants are in their active growth season, it generally only needs to be re-applied every 4-6 weeks to keep the weeds at bay.
Vinegar, like baking soda, is renowned for its multiple uses for both cooking and cleaning. Because it contains acetic acid, it does an effective job of drying out the weeds’ foliage. Just be sure you don’t overuse it, as any form of acid, in excess, will eventually wear into your pavers.
A popular “cocktail” for vinegar includes a gallon of white vinegar, a teaspoon of dishsoap, and 2 cups of table salt. Mix and add to a sprayer, but be sure to avoid adjacent grass and plants when applying.
Obviously, with this one, you want to wear gloves and boots, and be very careful! This method not only kills the entire plant, but can also kill off seedlings as well. That makes it potentially more effective than the others on the list.
Clearly you cannot pour boiling water into a plastic bottle, so you will need to use a heat-resistant container. If you haven’t got any sturdy gardening gloves, then definitely don a pair of oven mitts before taking on this task.
- Hand-pulling soaked weeds is always an effective method, both in your garden and in between your pavers.
- Table salt mixed with a bit of water can be applied to weeds to dry them out from leaf to root.
- Baking soda works similarly, as it is also a salt, an can be sprinkled directly onto the crevices between your pavers.
- Vinegar can be used alone, or mixed with salt and dishsoap, to spray on the weeds and dry them out.
- Boiling water, while a bit hazardous, is a great way to kill weeds, roots, and even seed pods.