By Nikki Phipps
(Author of The Bulb-o-licious Garden)
While there are many ways to kill unwanted grass, not all of them are safe ways to kill grass. In fact, some methods involve the use of harmful chemicals. If you’re looking for an alternative solution to kill your grass, there are natural methods that can get the job done. They’re not only safer but also easy and affordable.
Kill Unwanted Grass with Newspaper
If you want to know how to kill grass naturally, look no further than your Sunday paper. Newspaper works wonders. The fact that this is readily available at little or even no cost is just one of the benefits. Using newspaper as a way how to kill grass naturally is easy and can be used for both small and large areas. It also decomposes, adding nutrients to the soil.
Start by mowing the area where you want to kill your grass. This allows the newspaper to lay flatter and closer to the grass. Wet the area and begin placing thick layers of newspaper (about 8-10 sheets) over the grass, overlapping in different directions as you go. You may want to continue wetting the area to prevent the newspaper from blowing away. Wetting the paper beforehand is another option; however, it may be more difficult to work with and prone to tearing.
Once the area is completely covered, add mulch or landscape fabric, depending on your intent for the area’s use. As no light will penetrate the area, the grass will eventually smother and die.
Kill Your Grass with Plastic
Using plastic to kill unwanted grass is another option. Plastic is affordable and available at most home and garden centers. As with newspaper, it is often helpful to mow the grassy area first or you may want to till it and then rake the area smooth. Cover the grass with black plastic. Unlike clear plastic, black plastic blocks out light, smothering grass roots and preventing new growth.
Secure the plastic with large rocks. Allow the plastic to remain in place for a couple of weeks or even longer depending on its size and use. The plastic can then be removed or left in place, adding mulch to secure it in place and cutting holes where you want something planted.
Alternatively, you can use landscape fabric. Simply remove the plastic and replace with landscape fabric.
How to Kill Grass Using Vinegar
Kill unwanted grass with vinegar. White or pickled vinegar is another great way to kill your grass without the use of harmful chemicals. It is safe and will not harm the environment. However, do not spray near any plants you wish to keep, as vinegar will kill them too.
Vinegar is readily available at most supermarkets and while pickling vinegar may cost a little more, it still doesn’t cost as much as harmful chemicals. When using vinegar to kill your grass, keep in mind that it works better in smaller areas and during hot conditions. In fact, the hotter the better. Therefore, opt for hot summer days for better results. Simply saturate the grassy area with vinegar and within days (sometimes sooner), the grass will die.
If you’re looking for safe ways to kill grass, these natural methods are easy and affordable with great results.