Thursday, June 21, 2012


With shearing season essentially over and a few other things winding down it's time to turn our attention to the weeds.

We aren't certified organic but we don't use chemical fertilizers, herbicides or pesticides.  So we have been trying a few different things with some success over the last couple of years.  Of course, nothing has resolved our weed issue.

Ha.  Like that's actually possible.... how about this? Nothing that we've tried so far has brought our weed issue into the realm of reasonable.

Boiling water does a good job on sidewalk cracks.  Salt also works, but a lot is required and I don't want to use it in places that we intend to plant something someday.  So I've stepped the salt use down to very specific applications.

Of course, pulling works... It's a lot of pulling... and some of these weeds have stickers.  Ouch!

I have heard that vinegar works, but haven't tried it yet.

So, when faced with an overwhelming amount of weeds, what does one do?  Take a deep breath and start with the highest priority first.

These guys...

I still don't know what they're called.  I think they're sort of pretty.  They make a bazillion seeds and those pretty seed heads will be letting go soon.  They also have a huge root that is nearly impossible to get out, even with a shovel.

Hubba has done a lot of pulling over the last several days and hired a guy to help us.  I'm planning to take the pulled weeds to the land-fill because I'm certain that our composting process does not get hot enough, for long enough to kill these guys.

We are digging up what we can and then topping the remainder with a generous dose of salt.  I discovered at the end of last summer/fall that this method works really well... we just need to make sure we are diligent.

The other high priority are the Goat Heads in the parking area.

I think, technically, it's called Puncture Vine.  I don't know where the name Goat Head came from.  It's probably considered rude if you happen to be a goat.

Regardless, they are not friendly to puppy paws, wheelchair tires or hands trying to pull them out of the hard ground.

So I took a tip from a former neighbor and am attempting to smother/sweat them out this summer.

But I'm gonna need a few more tarps.  :-/

We plan to turn this (huge) parking area into something that looks less like a cul-de-sac and more like a garden you want to spend time in... this summer's major project.

1 comment:

city garden country garden said...

The Goat Head weeds sound nasty! Have you tried using thick layers of wetted newspaper topped with straw as an alternative to tarps? Not sure if those weeds might be too tough for it, but generally it works well and then starts to improve the soil underneath as well.