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You are going to find weeds in your beds and borders, gravel drives and patios and vegetable plots. Remember that a weed is a plant just growing in the wrong place; they use light, food and moisture that were all meant to be for our cherished plants. When we ignore them, pests will also use them to feed and multiply. On gravel drives, they become unsightly and in lawns, they mar the pleasing look of a greensward of grass setting off the plants surrounding it.
You may have read our advice on fertilisers and pesticides where we speak about the importance of the information on the back of a bottle or packet – this is the same with weedkillers. There is a great choice of products to help you control the weeds, including those suitable for use by organic gardeners who prefer more natural means. The range is broken down into the specific use for different areas of the garden.
For example, you may be looking for some help within the vegetable patch, this would be a great place to use one of the Organic Weedkillers (represented on Aylett’s shelves). The small print on the back of the bottle reveals this to be a fatty acid (this we also know as soap). It works by breaking down the waxy surface of the leaf and in the process, kills it. There is nothing however to stop regrowth from the root, so weeds such as dandelions with a tap root soon grow back. It is great for use on weed seedlings however, as there are no resources for the weed to regrow and results are often seen overnight.
For gravelled areas
Gravel areas are common source of concern. Any weedkiller could work on this problem, but products such as Weedol Pathclear not only contain a weedkiller but also throw down a type of salt that prevents weeds from germinating for some weeks. Not all path weedkillers contain this extra product, so please choose carefully.
To affect plant hormones
There is a group of weedkillers that affects a plant hormone. This hormone does not appear in grasses but does appear in most other plants, so grasses are unaffected. Because the hormone is disruptive, growth becomes distorted and weeds appear to twist and curl before they die. These are available on our shelves as SBK Ground Clearance Weedkiller and of course in Lawn Weedkiller liquids and granules. Again, they are best applied in warmer weather when weeds are actively growing.
General ground clearance
For general ground clearance, there are products that contain glyphosate. Roundup and Resolva weedkiller are examples of these. They work by entering the plant through the foliage and travel down into the roots to totally kill all plants. Spraying the product gives a better effect than using a watering can, for if the product rolls off the leaf and onto the ground it is wasted. All the products come in a ready to use sprayer as well as in a concentrated form which you dilute down yourself.
You must allow some three weeks for the product to work thoroughly. Even if the top growth is dead it may still be working its way down into the roots, so please be patient. Resolva has a second ingredient that turns foliage black very quickly after application, so you can see the effects much sooner. In all cases, the speed of effectiveness is greater in warm periods of the year, particularly with warm nights, where chemicals move faster within the plant.
Remember these products kill anything green they touch, so be careful near plants that are valuable to you. Hozelock supply a sprayer with a guard for the nozzle which means you can spray weeds that are close to those you are trying to keep.
As ever, be careful how you use these products. Always read the label before application. Measure out the area you want to cover so you can make sure the product is applied at the right rate. All these products are thoroughly tested and work well when applied as described on the pack. Follow these instructions and you will be thoroughly satisfied.
Alternatives to weedkillers
If you prefer not to use any chemicals, we can offer weed pullers to help you do it by hand or the weed-wand gas burner as an alternative.
Our team have also undertaken special training in the use of garden plant protection products safely. This complies with EU legislation called the ‘Sustainable Use Directive’ which is effective from 26th November 2015. So if you need any advice on which weedkillers to use, please ask a member of our team who will be delighted to pass on their expertise.
Alternatively, contact us on 01727 822255 for more information.