How many dandelions can any one person dig out before a visit to the doctor for treatment of back pain is warranted? Hmm. I don’t have the answer to that question.
I do have some useful tips on how to kill dandelions naturally.
After manually digging over
400 1,000 (updated 2016) Dandelion terrorists out of my yard. I figured people who might be dealing with similar issues might like to know if all the advice online really works. Reading information is great, but reading about experiences in conjunction with information is even better.
I’m certain we can all agree on one thing- There is an abundance of sketchy half-baked information passed around online. Falling prey to misleading, inaccurate false information is never a pleasant experience.
Here is the back story- Last year we noticed a severe dandelion infestation. Like fools, we sprayed Weed Be Gone.
The slogan says, “Kills weeds. Not yards.” WRONG!
Half the yard was dry, brown and dead within one week. No amount of flooding the yard with water was able to save the grass. And guess what came back this year? It most certainly was not grass but dandelion terrors.
If you have a severe infestation here is how you can naturally handle a dandelion infestation.
When dandelions are just mere baby beasts, only a few inches tall, dig them up with a forked tool. The tool will wedge around the root and bring the entire dandelion root up. Getting the full root out of the ground is the goal. It is not always possible, though. If some of the roots are left behind, try again when you see a couple of inches of growth.
*Do not wait until dandelions are gigantic.
*Remember, you are treating an infection. The key is to annihilate dandelions and then do maintenance until the lawn has been re-established and is thick like carpet.
I start with pouring boiling water mixed with plain Heinz vinegar directly on top of dandelions. Hot water will cause them to wilt and it softens the ground making them easier to work the root out with one sweep.*Boiling water can damage any surrounding vegetation. Be precise with the method of application!
Weed Be Gone squirted directly onto any root left behind in the soil will carry the toxins down through the root without causing harm to surrounding vegetation. *Be sure to make direct contact with the root when using Weed-Be-Gone. Remember… it will kill your lawn. On deep roots that are impossible to dig from the ground, I do use Weed B Gon or a Round Up weed killer spray.
Most importantly- cut those yellow blooms before they go to seed. The seed will spread and take hold anywhere they want to. Even if you lack time to dig out the beasts, at least cut those yellow flowers off. Your neighbors will appreciate not having seeds blown into their yards.
If you are going to use completely natural weed control remedies, be patient.
One more useful tip: I know for a fact that boiled water and vinegar will also kill chickweed and grass in rock beds. I tried it. It worked. The chickweed wilted within minutes. The following day it was brown. According to the instructions, a boiled water/vinegar solution will need to be reapplied as new growth occurs. Probably every couple of weeks.
Chickweed drops seeds like crazy. It will spread into lawns too. If ya’ll already have large patches of chickweed growing, it is best to treat the chickweed prior to seeding the lawn. Do not try to turn the ground as that will only cause the seeds to germinate and grow. Just kill the green growth, wait a few days, lay new topsoil, and grass seed.
Chickweed germinates at a faster rate than grass seed. I will keep ya’ll posted on my progress.
This information is intended as advice. I will not be held responsible for your yard. I am sharing what has worked for me.