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Smart Weeding: Save Your Back with These 5 Easy Tips

by Joe Cooper, All About Lawns Columnist

As we head into shorter days and cooler weather, how is your yard looking? If you've kept up with your yard maintenance during the summer months, you may have a special spot on the porch with your name on it for nice autumn weekends. If not, and your yard needs some attention, here are some simple tips for tackling one of the most common and invasive yard issues: weeds.

How would you like to improve your lawn?
  • Make it greener
  • Eliminate patches
  • Less weeds
  • Make it thicker
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Before you get down on your hands and knees, give these remedies a try:

  1. Bring your weed killing efforts to a boil.
    If your weed problem is not severe, try a simple home remedy--boiling water. Simply pour boiling water over the weeds growing in cracks or on the edges of lawns. Pesky, strong weeds? Use a little salt and vinegar in the water as you boil it to show the weeds you mean business.
  2. Turn the situation sour.
    In addition to boiling water, straight vinegar has been known to solve weed problems. Simply fill a spray bottle with household, undiluted vinegar and spray away, particularly at the roots.
  3. Smother the issue.
    Heard of landscaping cloth? A simple, thin mesh, landscaping cloth is stretched across a surface of land during landscaping projects in order to prevent the rooting and growth of weeds. Not a solution for driveway cracks, but in backyard lawn areas, this may do the trick.
  4. It's corny, but it works.
    What is the future of automotive technology and tastes great when it's popped into a kernel or baked into a chip? You got it. And now you can use corn to kill weeds, too. But not just any corn: you need corn gluten meal, which is what's left over after corn is processed into starch and syrup. It interrupts the cell growth of weeds and causes stalks to bend and break. Ask a landscaping expert how to find it and use it correctly.
  5. Water before weeding.
    If you are using a standard, store-bought weed killer, try watering your lawn or yard area before using the product. When the soil around weed is moist, the roots are loosened and the weed killer can often seep down deeper and attack where it counts.

With some out-of-the-box thinking and elbow grease, you should be able to free your landscape of weeds in no time.

About the Author
Joe Cooper writes education, home services, and design articles, and manages corporate communications. He holds a bachelor's in American Literature from UCLA.

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