Exactly. I was recently looking to buy one of the propane based torches for
a slightly different application and was
amazed at how many people think they are a good solution for weeds in
pavers, driveway cracks, etc. I agree with you, a torch will burn the top
of the plant and in many cases the roots survive and the plant comes back.
Compare that approach to using one of the extended duration vegetation
killers, eg Roundup extended, which not only kills the whole thing, but
prevents any new seeds from germinating for a couple months.
I was looking for the propane torch to burn off the remaining short DEAD
weeds in a rock bed after killing them first with Roundup.
I didn't see "little" in the OP; how little is "little"? A 10'x10'
might be little in a large lawn, but it's getting big when you start
cultivating....Whatever means you use to kill grass/weeds now, you still
need to deal with sod (roots) before you smooth the soil and plant
seeds. You will also have some weed seed that continues to germinate
for two to three years, but is relatively easy to deal with later. In
most areas, this is not ideal time of year to plant grass seed, but is
doable if you mulch lightly with straw and water lightly and often.
Roundup now will kill most of what is presently growing, but leaves
tilling to be done to get rid of roots/sod before you seed, and by the
time all present growth is "dead", you likely will have more weed seed
germinated. So, what I'm trying to say is that tilling, chopping,
pulling out most roots by hand, then raking and seeding without Roundup
will probably be as practical as using Roundup. Sod might be more
practical than seeding, but still must be cared for until it takes root;
not very expensive for DIY.
On Thu, 30 Jun 2011 10:38:14 -0400, " email@example.com"
You definitely want to run at LEAST two cycles of green and kill
before either sodding or seeding, or you will be fighting a constant
battle with weeds.
"burn" it down with roundup, then till and remove as much rood matter
as possible by raking - wait for it to green up again (water it if it
doesn't rain) then hit it with roundup again to kill it, and till it
again - removing as much root material as possible. If it greened up
relatively quickly first time around, you might want to let it go one
more time around before seeding. If you are sodding, a pre-emergent
herbicide in the tilled soil as you rake it down just before laying
the sod would be good insurance, as it will kill any seeds still in
the soil, without affecting the root system of the sod.
I didn't have that option when I renovated my yard a few years back
because I chose to seed instead of sod.
Penny wise and pound foolish.....
Another method I've heard is to till the ground, then cover it with *clear*
plastic over the early part of the summer. The light encourages the weeds to
germinate then the heat cooks them. Grass can then be planted in the late
summer or early fall, which is usually the best time to do it.
I'm with the respondents who advised "baking" the area with black
plastic. But it should be left on more than "a few days"unless you
are in a terrible hurry.
I hate Monsanto enough that I beat myself up every time I use Roundup
to kill weeds in a very rocky, hard-to-reach area. In fact, next time
I'll just use boiling water and see how THAT works out.
You didn't say how big the area is. That might have a bearing on how
much black plastic you have to buy. Others have suggested newspaper
held down with rocks.
As a scientific experiment, you could run a test with 1/2 area black
plastic, 1/2 area thick newspaper w/rocks. Should be quite
Also consider posting on <rec.gardens> - knowledgeable folks.
OK, so you don't like the term "bake". Fact is, sun beating down on
black plastic overheats the area underneath, killing vegetation.
Alsoblocks direct sun (which newspapers would also do), thus "stopping
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