Vinegar and weeds?

My neighbor was telling me that you can spray vinegar on weeds to kill them. Is that true?
My biggest concern is the soil. If it stays in the soil, will grass be able to grow there after that?
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On Sat, 05 Mar 2005 13:16:07 -0600, Popcorn Lover

Yes. The vinegar will deteriorate after the next rainfall. I have tried vinegar with limited success, but you may have better luck with it. I pull weeds after a rainfall to limit use of a herbicide. Let us know.
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Popcorn Lover wrote:

You're not going to have much luck with the vinegar you get at the grocery store. Those are only between 2-5% acid. They're already too watered down to have much of an effect on weeds. The 20% mix you can get for hoticulural use is what you'd have to start with.

If you paint the weeds, or lightly spray them, you aren't likely to change the ph of the soil enough to cause later problems. Each rainfall will wash more away, too. Just don't drench the weeds or the soil.
But even with the stronger vinegar, this isn't some magic cure for a weed problem. It's probably best around acid loving plants like azaleas, and for patches of weeds that are too thick to hand pull without bringing up all the soil. It's not something that's well suited for weeds in the middle of the lawn.
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You can use pickling vinegar at 9% acidity, but add an ounce or two of d-limonine aka citrus oil per gallon of straight vinegar. Spray weeds in the hot of the day in direct sun and you will have success. Grass will be growing there in a second or two after it rains or you water. The most effective vinegar is the 20% acidic, which you can buy, but it's expensive. I just use the 9% pickling vinegar I find in the pickling supplies aisle in the grocery store I shop at.
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Last I heard about vinegar for weed control was that to be effective, it had to be a stronger concentration, more like 24%, than what is available at the grocery store, usually 5%. Also, it can change the pH of the soil and doesn't do a good job of killing nasty weeds such as thistles at the root. Here's some interesting info from Purdue: http://www.weeds.iastate.edu/weednews/vinegar.htm .
Hope this helps! Suzy O Milwaukee, WI

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You can, depends on the weed. Works best when the plant's root system is limited (e.g. confined to a sidewalk crack), soil moisture low, and application is on a bright day. Regular 5% grocery store vinegar is fine under those circumstances. Other applications may require higher concentrations or alternative removal methods.
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Do it early in the year when the root system isn't developed fully.
Doesn't work well on grassy weeds.
Salty Thumb wrote:

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