Will weeds be worrying you this season? Everyone has some weed control need. Many weeds grow in our lawns and in our flower beds and even in planters. But how do they get in there? Simply by blowing in the air, dropping off your shoes, or by pets. Other times weeds are introduced by mulches or compost materials. Actually, a weed is just a plant growing in the wrong place. But weeds must go. They often have large leaves which can shade fine grasses underneath and they steal water and nutrients from your desired plants.
The best practice to keep weeds to a minimum is to have a healthy lawn and regular landscape maintenance occasional weeds should control. If you have regular watering, mowing, fertilization, and insect and disease control, the grass will out-compete the weeds. Once the lawn is healthy, hand pulling most problems. Pulling them out after a rain will help remove tap roots.
Do not let weeds take over the garden you enjoy. You don’t have to spend all weekend pulling them either. Hand pulling is practical but only in small spaces, and you have to get the whole root outand in a bag. Do not leave any part behind. If you can, use a preemergent herbicide (prior to weed growth) which is introduced to the soil at the same time you plant. Or if you already have weeds growing, a postemergent can be sprayed to kill just the weed. Another method of weed control is to maintain 2-4 inches of mulch in the beds. Mulch can be any material which covers the ground in the beds. This includes rolls of plastic. If you are in a position to do so, roll the plastic over the bed area, cut slits for new plants, then cover with a decorative product (also a mulch) such as rocks or shredded bark to disguise the plastic and provide the insulation. This will keep weeds in the area from being introduced into the bed. Occasionally, weeds will grow in the mulch itself, but these are small and can be pulled easily.