Does Acetic Acid Kill Weeds?

Last updated on October 23rd, 2023 at 08:38 pm

Acetic acid is a popular home remedy against weeds. However, its use as a weed killer should be treated with caution.

There are plenty of home remedies for weed control. They are supposed to offer a gentle alternative to the chemical club and thus protect the soil as well as other plants. Vinegar is also said to have a relatively gentle effect. The acetic acid it contains is said to kill weeds, especially in the form of vinegar essence, which has a higher acid concentration than simple vinegar.

Does Acetic Acid Kill Weeds?

However, the gentle effect of acetic acid is a fallacy. Therefore, before using it, the amateur gardener should realize the consequences of the home remedy.

The liquid accumulates on sealed paved surfaces. It doesn’t seep away and instead gets into the sewer system, where it causes problems. It damages the microorganisms that are supposed to treat water in wastewater treatment plants.

Therefore, homeowners should use alternatives such as boiling hot water on patches.

Vinegar against weeds in the garden also kills ornamental plants

To successfully control weeds in the garden with acetic acid, relatively high amounts are necessary. Since acetic acid destroys all plants in addition to weeds, it is not advisable to use the home remedy in high quantities. The treated areas experience negative stress due to weed control methods with vinegar essence and can become unusable in the long term.

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Therefore, instead of vinegar essence, use only highly diluted vinegar. Again, this is best done only on heavily weeded areas where hardly any other plants are rooting.

Infrared devices as a control alternative to the home remedy vinegar

It is better to root out weeds before they flower. This method is more laborious for the gardener, but in the longer term it is the only gentle system that really helps.

Another soil-friendly alternative is control via infrared equipment. Heat can be targeted through these machines to rid specific areas of weeds. The high heat kills the roots of the plants, so the removal is permanent.

There are also flaming devices available at garden supply stores for the same purpose. However, these are less effective and usually only flame the weeds above ground. The root thus remains and the plants soon sprout again.

Preventing weeds with bark mulch, scarifying strips and weed fleece

Prevention is everything. What applies to many areas of life also applies to weed control. Those who take preventive measures can at least expect less severe infestation. Therefore, diligently scarify and fertilize lawns every spring.

Cover beds with bark mulch, as flying seeds and weed roots find it harder to get a foothold. A weed fleece can be used as a preventive measure under paved areas or around the pond.


  • James Jones

    Meet James Jones, a passionate gardening writer whose words bloom with the wisdom of an experienced horticulturist. With a deep-rooted love for all things green, James has dedicated his life to sharing the art and science of gardening with the world. James's words have found their way into countless publications, and his gardening insights have inspired a new generation of green thumbs. His commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship shines through in every article he crafts.

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