organic weedkiller

how do i get rid of garden weeds and dandilions without using commercial weedkillers as id rather use organic as its safer for my kids and pets if anyone can help id be very grateful
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On 16 Feb 2004 05:58:34 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (jackie) opined:

Weeds don't like being pulled out. When you pull the out, they die! It's called "weeding." It's a verb and part of the other verb, "to garden." However, if you want to step over the line, Finale is a weed killer which is the safer of the dangerous ones. I've never used it, but read the label beginning to end. Also, they sell a tool called the Weed Popper. It's a great tool. The Weed Hound is not AS good, but it works well for you listed weeds provided the soil is not hardpan dry.
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- Tallahassee, FL - Nor, does "organic" mean "non-chemical."
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It has been posted here that gin is a good herbicide.
vince norris
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wrote:

Don't get lulled into a false sense of security by words like 'organic' or 'natural' all "organic" means is it's carbon based, and arsenic and nicotine are "natural" substances, doesn't make them any less deadly.
Safest way to kill dandelions is the dandelion digger, good exercise, you can work at it getting a few at a time, cutting them out with the digger deeply enough, and they're gone. mow before they bloom in the spring to give you more time, but they will counter by blooming as close to the ground as possible, but the first mowing will give you a few more days. But if you dig them, then scratch up the surface of the soil where the broad leafed weeds had been and scatter a bit of lawn grass seed there, water it in, and scatter a little dry grass or straw lightly over it.. and water all of them keeping them moist and when the grass fills in, you won't get so many dandelions as they can't grow where there's enough grass to choke them out.
So, keep the lawn well seeded, and that won't give the dandelions a place to grow. If you have problem areas, like shade, get grass seed blended for it. And in areas where grass won't grow, then get perennials which will grow there. Hostas, ferns .. there are even ferns for dry shade. You just got to look around. Try to get out of the loop of feeding a lawn with high nitrogen fertilizer to make it grow lush.. because then you have to up the water or it'll burn out, and then you'll have to pay someone to mow twice as often. It's not good for the lawn, the environment as over fertilizing eventually ends up in the water table or in rivers and ponds and makes for algae blooms. It's cheaper not to fertilize and usually it's not needed, just water deeply when you wanter, and then you can water less often, and mow less often. If you NEED to fertilize, then fertilize for healthy roots.
If you just can't stand the weeds, and you're not willing to hand weed, then put some round up in a squirt bottle and carefully spray each weed., then after the weed dies, rake up the soil, and reseed the spots that die. Roundup kills everything, including lawn, so just be careful and precise.
Of course you can dig it all out and plant vegetables, herbs, small fruit, and flowers :-D That's what I did .. even the driveway! LOL I didn't have room to grow even a fraction of what I wanted to grow, so I just said grass is evil and out it came. Of course, then I had more weeds, but there are new things like the fabric weed barriers, and you can lay down several layers of newsprint you then wet and mulch over that'll keep new weeds down. :-D
Good gardening!!
Janice
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On 16 Feb 2004 05:58:34 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (jackie) wrote:

I usually pull out weeds. Sometimes I'll use a propane torch on the thorny ones. RoundUp on poison ivy.
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I going to try a propane torch.
jackie wrote:

--

Celestial Habitats by J. Kolenovsky
2003 Honorable Mention Award, Keep Houston Beautiful
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On Mon, 16 Feb 2004 05:58:34 -0800, jackie wrote:

Organic method: pull 'em.
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jackie wrote:

Safe magic bullet herbicides are non-existant. The safest way is to pull them up. Alternatively, you could use a hoe. The hoe I like to use is called a Coleman hoe or Collinear hoe. It's a very thin blade on a very long handle. Instead of leaning over and chopping weeds, you stand upright and sweep with the hoe, holding it like a broom, with your thumbs pointing away from the blade. It takes a couple of tries to get used to it, but it really saves your back.
Hoes work best when the weeds are very small (less than 1" high). This means you have to keep at it. Fortunately, if you attack the weeds when they're small, the job is much easier, so it takes little time. That little time, applied often, works wonders. In fact, you should schedule a couple of days a week to hoe your garden whether or not you see any weeds. Frequently when you do that, you will see small white threads in the soil you disturb. Those are weeds that haven't emerged yet, and you just killed them.
There's a rule of thumb that seeds will only germinate if they are buried less than seven times their maximum dimension. Most weed seeds are fairly small, so if you don't disturb more than the top inch of soil with your hoe, you won't bring up new weed seeds, and eventually the weeds will stop coming up.
Dandelions are another matter. You don't usually see them until they are fairly mature, at which time they have a long tap root. Your best bet is to find a tool that pulls them up. That won't kill them since you rarely get the whole root, but if you are persistent, you can tire them out. At the very least, you should use the tool whenever you see a flower. As soon as you see a dandelion flower, you have maybe 3-5 days before you have dandelion seeds. If they get to that point, you have to start all over again.
Personally, I like dandelions. They're mostly green and they occasionally add a bit of nice color to a lawn. Ditto clover.
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On Tue, 17 Feb 2004 09:11:55 -0500, Dwight Sipler

ayup.. and if you can't beat 'em...blanche 'em and eat 'em ;-) I couldn't believe it when I saw dandelion seed for sale for salad greens! LOL
Janice
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (jackie) wrote in

aside from pulling them out as others have mentioned, I've heard that cutting your grass often will encourage a deep and dense root structure that helps crowd out dandelions and broadleaf weeds. I pull, but don't mow often, because i don't like to run the gasoline powered lawm mower. Maybe if break down and get a push reel mower this spring ....
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opined:

We bought a Black and Decker electric mower and it is the best thing we did. One charge easily does our entire turf, and we have thick St. Augustine. Our turf covers approximately...1500 sq. ft.
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The cordless model does look intriguing, but I think I will have go with getting the extra exercise and take my chances with neighborhood kids laughing at me.
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opined:

You could not have St. Augustine if you are thinking of using a hand mower. There is no way in hell I'd be able to mow my entire lawn, small or large, with a hand mower. My turf is thick stuff.
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opined:

I don't think I have St. Augustine. Probably some sort of fescue + occasional rye.
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Not only mow often, but mow high. weed seeds need light to germinate and grow. If your grass shades the soil, you'll have less weeds.

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tmtresh wrote:

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Germinate *and* grow. Sure, they'll germinate without light, but they'll die pretty quick.

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tmtresh wrote:

Actually some seeds do need light to germinate. However, the definition of "weed" is so broad as to be meaningless. Accordingly, you can't generalize and say that weed seeds need light or weed seeds will germinate without light. It depends on the seed. And what you call a weed. After all, tomatoes can be weeds if they're growing in your petunia patch.
However, there are far fewer plants that will thrive after germination without light. Some plants will tolerate lack of light for a limited time while they work their way through a thick cover (e.g. last years plant debris, a thick lawn or soil overburden, etc.), but eventually they need light.
It is difficult to withhold light from selected plants. This form of herbicide can be called broad-spectrum.
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Many weed seeds actually need light to germinate. In other words, when people scalp their lawn, they expose the weed seeds to the light, thus, they germinate at a much higher rate than if you don't scalp. My neighbor just scalped his lawn, and the neighbors lawn because he bought a riding mower. His yard is maybe (including the house on it) 1/4 acre. It's on a slope. Maybe his mower will smash him into the fence. Sorry, that wasn't nice...so be it.

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