Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Organic Weed Control

Organic herbicides (OH) include products with ingredients such as acetic acid (vinegar), citric acid, d-lemonene, in addition to clove, cinnamon and lemongrass oils. These products are classified as contact herbicides, meaning they will damage any green vegetation they contact; yet they have no residual activity. OH are not absorbed into the plant system and are safe when sprayed on woody stems and trunks. The foliage of perennial weeds will burn when sprayed, but the plant will recover; repeat applications are needed.

The organic herbicides are effective in controlling weeds when they are small; weeds in the first true leaf stage are easier to control than older weeds. Environmental conditions such as temperature and sunlight may also influence the effectiveness of these herbicides. Many of the products work better when temperatures are above 75F. Furthermore, broadleaf weeds are easier to control than grasses. 

No matter what the situation, good coverage is essential. Adding an organically acceptable spray adjuvant to the herbicide mix has resulted in improved control. An adjuvant is a nonpesticide material added to the spray mixture to enhance the performance of the pesticide. As a final note, organic herbicides are expensive.