A rock garden or just plain bedrock space can be a nice, low maintenance area in your yard. No need to mow. But some weeds will continuously sprout up between boulders or in other free spaces no matter how hard you try to prevent this. An effective weed killing method is a must for saving your yard and this article is here to help you with that.
In order to rid your rock area of these pesky weeds, a few options exist. These include garden torches, traditional herbicide formula, and gentler weed killer concentrate formulas. While using chemicals, following along with the instructions is of the utmost importance. Those with severe issues with weeds will probably benefit most from a chemical application, while those who have managed to catch their weed problem earlier can go with a gentler solution.
When you’ve already done your research on how to get rid of weeds in rocks, and have found that further steps are necessary, the following products will help you with your problem.
The Best Products to Kill Weeds in Rocks
Each of the weed killing methods on this list was selected for its efficiency, price, and overall value based on user reviews. You will see a few methods here that vary quite a bit and once you have all the facts, you’ll be ready to make a selection.
- SpeedZone Red Herbicide
- Nature’s Avenger Organic Weed Killer
- Red Dragon Propane Vapor Torch Kit
- Natural Horticultural Vinegar
SpeedZone Red Herbicide
For those who have a pretty severe issue with weeds in their rock garden or bedrock, SpeedZone Red Herbicide is the way to go. This is the best choice if you are okay with using chemical control on your weed problem.
“Able to be applied as either a spot treatment for problem areas or as a watering-in product for getting your yard under control,” said Yard Care Gurus, “this particular SpeedZone variant is designed specifically to meet homeowner needs.”
This product will kill more than 100 different types of weeds that plague home gardeners, including poison ivy, poison oak, chickweed, plantain, spurge, lespedeza, wild onion and garlic, clovers and legumes, and wild violets. SpeedZone Red is a broadleaf herbicide and is the original formula of a few different types.
This formula offers post-emergent control in your yard and acts very quickly. This fast-acting quality is great for those who are in a hurry or have friends coming over this weekend. While many types of herbicides won’t work in cooler temperatures, this does the job in both warm and cool season grasses.
It’s easy to apply on your lawn or rock bed and can be used as a watering-in treatment for controlling your garden or as a reliable spot treatment. The product was designed especially for homeowners and is resistant to rain within a couple of hours. Once you have applied this, you must wait two weeks before reseeding the patches left behind from the weed removal process.
When you are using this product, wear eye protection, gloves, long pants, and long sleeves. Try to use this on a calm day to reduce the risk of the chemical drifting to your other plants. In addition, don’t spray this around water that may carry to unintended areas and don’t put chemically treated plants into your compost.
Nature’s Avenger Organic Weed Killer
For an herbicide that will kill broadleaves along with weeds, Nature’s Avenger Organic Weed Killer is a quality choice. Instead of using harsh chemicals, the blend contains citrus oil as an active ingredient. This oil strips the plant’s waxy cuticle away, which makes it die due to dehydration.
“Avenger Natural Weed and Grass Killer is a non-selective, post-emergence herbicide, which means it quickly and effectively kills weeds and grasses that it comes in contact with,” said Organolawn. “Avenger is the best non toxic weed killer that will kill undesirable plants without causing harm to the environment.”
This product has been approved by the USDA as suitable for organic gardening, but note that it’s most effective for smaller annual weeds under 6 inches in height. When you are using this formula, a 1:6 ratio of formula to water is recommended, though some users found a ratio of 1:3 to be more effective.
For those who would rather stay away with chemical-laden products and also dislike de-weeding by hand, a product like this can be a lifesaver. Some may even find that it kills unwanted plants in their garden within just a day or two. Although it is pricier than other options, users may think a natural solution such as this is well worth the extra cost.
Unlike chemical-based products on the market, Nature’s Avenger won’t kill plant roots, so you may need to keep weeds at bay with touch-up spraying every so often. However, it will reduce your weeding time and save you the hassle of regularly getting down on all fours with garbage bags in your garden.
Just a small amount of this solution goes far and it can be used to clear out a new spot in your backyard for whatever you want. You can also use it for spot treating small weeds on your lawn, just make sure you’re always careful. Although it doesn’t have the same effectiveness as Roundup or other similar names, this solution may be safer and it’s very effective.
For those who live in areas close to a playground or lake, for instance, organic and natural products are the way to go. Note that you might have to reapply this occasionally.
Red Dragon Propane Vapor Torch Kit
For another chemical-free option, consider the Red Dragon Propane Torch. It will kill weeds naturally and safely without the use of herbicides. Use the torch to burn stumps, ice, snow, heavy brush, and also to thaw asphalt, tar, and metal pipes in the Winter.
“I give the Weed Dragon a 5-shovel rating for its effectiveness.,” said Linda Cook over at Gardening Products Review. “My use for over 8 years is a testimony to how well made it is. I do feel that it is a potentially dangerous tool and would caution anyone to be extra careful when using it. And obviously keep your children and pets away from it at all times.”
In addition to getting rid of weeds in your rock bed area, the torch can sterilize confinement areas and cages. This can be hooked up to your refillable propane tank. It also comes with a tank fitting that can be tightened without tools. The torch is 27.5 inches in total and comes with a 2-inch bell.
This device is CSA-certified, comes completely assembled, and has a pipe thread compound, spark lighter, and adjustable needle valve. This garden kit will help you get rid of the risk of run off and chemical residue, making your garden and lawn safer for your pets and family members.
Created just for landscapers and home owners who need to reach tough spots, the 10-foot hose and 23-inch handle will enable precision and great coverage for outdoor areas. Not only is it fun to use, but it’s easy, even for complete beginners and connects to standard types of propane cylinders.
For home owners who are ready to try something completely different to tackle weeds in their garden or bedrock, this product can be put to use for hours without faltering. Note that it won’t stop the weeds from returning, but that it’s so fun to use, you might hope the weeds will come back. Very tall users may wish for a longer hose and handle, but either way, it’s comfortable to use.
A single can of propane lasts very long with the torch and it will easily clear grass and tall weeds, clearing your rock bed. In addition, you can clear out your existing garden to make way for fresh new plants. Make sure that when you use this, you are taking safety precautions such as wearing boots and jeans, along with protective eye wear.
It’s also always a good idea to keep a hose turned on and close by in case there are any complications with the fire. Always check that you aren’t using this around anything that could catch fire and that you exercise caution around desired garden plants. If you accidentally burn them, they may not return for a full season.
Natural Horticultural Vinegar
Natural solutions are becoming more and more common, so concentrated vinegar formulas are popular and growing in popularity every day as a product for controlling weeds. Natural Horticulture Vinegar is a great example of a product that is effective and fits into this category.
“Horticultural vinegar kills plants by burning the tissues,” said Dr. Gouin at Bay Weekly. “You generally see the results within six hours after it is applied to weeds on a bright sunny day. However, it kills only the tops of plants and not the roots. It is most effective when applied to young seedlings and not mature plants.”
When this is applied to plants, research suggests that the weeds’ leaf coating is stripped away from the vinegar, leaving the plants to die of dehydration. This is best to use on sunny, warm days and will lead most weeds to perish within just hours. Note that plants with very waxy and thick skins might require another application in a few hours for the best results.
When you use this in high heats (over 85 Fahrenheit) or on young, tender weeds, you may dilute the solution with equal parts water. This product may not be as effective on plants that have larger root systems, such as trees, brush, ivies, and Bermuda grass. Although this product is great for rock gardens and bedrock, it shouldn’t be used on your lawn.
This solution is non-toxic and contains 20 percent acetic acid. Acetic acid is the compound found in vinegar and standard grocery store varieties contain about 5 percent. As you can see, this is a concentrated version of ordinary vinegar. The product also comes with Yucca extract to help increase the solution’s effectiveness. This liquid is ready to apply immediately out of the jug.
If you are dealing with very stubborn weeds, adding salt and detergent to the mixture can help increase the vinegar solution’s effectiveness and rid your rock garden of the stubborn plants.
Weeding Mistakes to Avoid in Your Garden
When you are trying to get rid of pesky weeds, it’s easy to make simple mistakes that can lead to an even higher number of them. This list is going to cover some of the most common mistakes, so you can avoid them and keep your garden functioning well.
- Leaving Residue: A big mistake you should avoid when weeding your garden is leaving plant residue on the ground, especially when the weed plant is in flower. Even after you have pulled certain weeds (like chickweed, for instance), they can keep developing seeds, spreading in your garden or rocks once again.
- Fabric and Mulch: Another common mistake gardeners make at home is adding too much mulch to their landscaping material. When mulch starts to break down, it becomes the ideal place for weeds to sprout and grow from rogue seeds. This can lead to weeds taking root, even in the fabric itself. Try to limit the depth of mulch on the fabric to a couple of inches.In addition, adding mulch to fabric that already has weed seeds in it can spell disaster for your garden. Mulches like wood chips or straw can easily carry weed seeds in them. In order to escape this blunder, make sure you purchase your products from a quality nursery that has seed-free mulch.
- Compost Mistakes: Never toss weeds you’ve pulled up into your compost, as they can still contain seeds. Some compost piles can rise in temperature enough to kill off these seeds, but if there are any cool areas inside, these seeds can make it and re-sprout later. When you spread the compost, you might also spread weeds, so make sure you aren’t ever putting your weeds into your compost pile.
- Not removing the Root: Some new gardeners might believe that pulling part of the weed out is enough to get rid of the plant, but breaking the roots apart means that each piece will sprout another weed. Always ensure that you are removing the whole plant, roots and all.
Keeping a beautiful garden free from weeds is an art that might take some practice, but when you see your efforts pay off, it’s well-worth the effort.