How to remove weeds and moss from lawns
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Garden weeds can take over the garden at any time of the year, with some extremely fast-growing. If they get out of hand, they can be hard to banish, so it is best to tackle them as soon as they appear. A gardening expert has shared top tips exclusively with Express.co.uk on how to get rid of weeds for good.
Gena Loraine, gardening expert at Fantastic Services explained: “To manage weeds, mulch the soil. It blocks sunlight from weeds, inhibits their growth and helps retain moisture.”
Mulch is any material that is spread or laid over the surface of the soil and used for a covering. It is usually made from dead plant material such as compost, leaves bark or grass clippings.
If gardeners are looking for something which is a little more instant, Gena said: “Pouring boiling water on weeds can instantly kill them, as well as any seeds that may be dormant in the soil.
“It is brilliant for walkways, garden paths and driveways, but not lawns. Annual weeds should be taken care of before they have the chance to set seed.
“Consider pulling them out of the ground after the rain has softened the soil, so you can get the complete root systems. If you have a weed problem and don’t mind using chemicals, consider a systemic weed killer.
“You can spray or dab this onto dry leaves when it doesn’t look like it is going to rain for a while.”
When using boiling water, it is important to only put it directly onto the weed and avoid any other plant or flower which may be surrounding it. This is because the hot water could also scorch surrounding plants too.
The gardening expert added: “Mowing the lawn can be an effective deterrent. The plants will wilt and stop producing seeds, which will eliminate them.
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“Just make sure you attach a basket to your mower rather than tossing the clippings on the grass.” Mowing the lawn is often not necessary during the winter months but if weeds do appear, make sure it is dry weather before cutting.
For gardeners who are not yet ready to battle and get rid of the weeds completely, the expert advised not letting them germinate. Gardeners can do so by cutting their heads off with a trimmer or grass whip before they bloom.
Gena said keeping garden edges trimmed in order to cut down on weeds. She added: “You’ll want to keep an eye on not only the edges of your lawn but also around posts and fencing.
“Watch out for weeds near planting beds too. Aerating the soil is a great way to get rid of pesky weeds. Many weeds flourish because the soil is compacted and restricts water, air and nutrients from getting in.
“If you have many weeds that won’t respond to other methods, use a weed burner. It connects to a propane tank and burns the weed out, removing them from the lawn for good.”
Another invasive weed which can quickly take over buildings, fences and walls is English ivy which is extremely fast-growing and aggressive.
Although this plant is easily identified, many homeowners make the mistake of leaving it in their garden for too long. It has three to five-lobed glossy leaves and attaches itself to supports by producing aerial roots along the stems.
When the stems are pulled away from the support, such as a wall or fence, they often leave behind roots. Gena explained: “The best way to remove ivy from a wall is to cut through the stem with a sharp saw and then dig out the root.
“Once the foliage has died, you can carefully remove the stuck-on stems with a wire brush. If it covers the ground, dig it up with a mattock or fork and dispose of it elsewhere.
“Alternatively, if the ground does not need to be planted, remove all the top growth, cover it with weed-control fabric, and add some bark mulch 10cm to 15cm deep. It can also be sprayed with a tough weed killer containing glyphosate, but be careful, as it will kill any plant it touches.
“Spray lightly so the weedkiller does not drip off the leaves, or, even better, crush and damage the leaves before spraying so they can absorb more weedkiller. There may be a need for several applications.”
If Britons want to opt for something other than a weed killer, the expert recommended making a homemade solution of water and vinegar.
This involves using 80 percent water and 20 percent white vinegar and mixing it up into a container.
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