3-Step Guide To Naturally Killing Small Patches Of Dandelions In Your Yard
When your home's lawn contains small patches of dandelions, you may feel the weed detracts from the beauty of your landscape and want to get rid of them. However, you may not want to use poisons or have to pull them out one at a time. If so, use the following three-step guide to naturally kill the dandelions using household ingredients you may already have or can find in a grocery store.
Step 1: Boil The Dandelions With Hot Water
The first step involves pouring boiling water straight on the plants. This burns the foliage and skins and cooks the chlorophyll inside, preventing it from nourishing the weeds.
Boil a gallon of water per two-foot square area. Slowly pour the water directly on the plants, making sure you do not burn yourself.
While the plants are still steaming, immediately proceed to the next step. The heat will assist in the rapid absorption of the vinegar.
Step 2: Pickle The Plants With Vinegar
After you have boiled the plants, it is time to pickle them with vinegar. The acidity of white distilled vinegar will soak into the plants' skin and burn them from the inside out. It will also dry out the leaves. Some of the vinegar will also be absorbed into the roots, killing the plants at their source.
While applying the vinegar, be careful if you are spraying around any flowers or vegetable plants. The vinegar has the same effect on all plants and could kill them as well.
Fill a plastic spray bottle with a cup of hot water and three cups of vinegar. Shake the bottle vigorously. Then, saturate the dandelion plants with the mixture. If possible, complete this step while the sun is shining on them because it will enhance the burning properties of the vinegar.
Allow the vinegar to soak into the plants for an hour. You may see the leaves start turning black or brown as they begin to wither. Then, repeat the application. After another hour has passed, go on to the next step.
Step 3: Smother The Roots With Corn Meal
After you have treated the weeds with the boiling water and vinegar, the final step you will need to perform is to mulch the area with corn meal. The corn meal helps kill existing dandelion plants and prevent new ones from forming.
The meal helps kill the plants by keeping nutrients, food, and sunlight from reaching the roots. When placed in a thick layer, the meal absorbs any moisture and creates a barrier on top of the soil.
Corn meal also prevents germination of new dandelion seeds. Not only does it rob them of moisture and nutrients, but the natural chemicals found within the meal inhibits the sprouting of the seeds.
Before spreading the corn meal mulch, look for any dead dandelion plants and pull them up. If you are unsure whether they are dead, gently pull on the center. It should easily pull out by the roots. If not, do not break the plant off, leaving the roots. Keeping some foliage will allow you to repeat this treatment, if needed.
Spread the corn meal in the areas around the dandelions, creating a quarter of an inch layer. Then, sprinkle some of the meal directly on the center of the plants.
Using the above dandelion treatment once a week for a month should help you get rid of the small patches of the weeds in your yard. However, if you have larger amounts, you may want to contact a landscaping company to discuss any organic options for weed control.