Sunday, July 24, 2011


Awhile ago I wrote a post entitled "
Dealing With Weeds" about my attempts to find an organic way to kill the weeds growing on my rock path. I tried all kinds of things at that time, including spraying them with pure bleach, pure vinegar and dish soap, etc. They turned yellow but didn't DIE. People told me then that it will work but I have to stay on top of it. I think they meant that it has to be reapplied all the time.

This is not what I was looking for. I have searched for an organic way to KILL weeds DEAD not just slow them down. I know gasoline will do this very well, but I don't really want it in the water table, especially since we are on a well right beside the rock path. (I wouldn't use gasoline anyway.)
Well, I found something that kills them DEAD and it's so simple. Boiling Water. Nothing else is added, just boiling water. I have read that you can use boiling salt water, but the salt doesn't seem to be necessary. I don't want to use salt because it will sting Shdow and Abby's feet and not be too good for them to lick off, either.

This is a picture of what just boiling water poured directly on the weeds has done.
I am very excited about this find! I discovered it while blanching beans outside on the BBQ in the heat. I poured the boiling water out on the path, just because it was handy and wouldn't hurt any thing there.

Now I have been boiling the kettle outside just to kill the weeds!
I wonder if it will work on the BIG weeds. We are drowning in burdock this year. Maybe next spring, just as they are starting to grow, I will give it a try.


Rose H (UK) said...

I use salt on small areas but next time I'll take the kettle out!
I know you make a lot of home brew etc, but have you heard of dandylion and burdock as a drink? It may be a UK recipe? Here's a link
at least you could put a use to some of that burdock root, it's a great drink!

*~*~*~*~Tonia said...

Burdock dried is a high protein feed. Its roots are suppose to taste similar to potatoes. They are also suppose to be healing and is used in the black salve I have here..

Julia said...

I have used boiling water in the past too. Another tip that was shared with me is borrow someone's goat to eat the weeds. They pull up roots and all.

Ali said...

Yes, for some reason I knew that boiling water was good for weeds in cracks, I think that my dad passed that one on to me. Isn't it lovely and earth friendly!

Sheryl at Providence Acres Farm said...

I'll be using it on all the little weeds this summer!

Burdock leaves are a great healer and used a lot for burns. I have some leaves drying with the herbs now. I plan to make a salve with them and a few others that are good for sores, acne, eczema and so forth. I assume we'll need lots of it for sunburn in the spring.

A drink, eh? Interesting. I had read that the roots were edible. I should put them to some use, we have so many this year.

I have dandelion leaves drying too. We'll be adding them to soups and stew and sauces with the dried spinach.

Diane@Peaceful Acres Farm said...

Very nice! But it's going to take a lot of trips to the house for boiling water to take care of my problems this year! I thought maybe the boiling water coming out of the hose would do the trick...but I guess it wasn't boiling hard but enough to burn me! I did use some 200 proof vinegar that seemed to kill them dead but that's expensive when you have a consistent job ahead of you. Let us know how the big patch comes along!!!

The Japanese Redneck said...

I might have to give that a try!

steak and eggs said...

I, like you found out about the boiling water a few months ago. Having red ants by the sidewalk leading up to the front porch I wanted a cheap way of getting rid of them. I had heard that boiling water will do the trick. Well it did, those pesty ants died along with my grass. My husband said Oh well the grass will come back. The only trouble is so will the ants. Word of caution if the boiling water gets on the flowers they too will die.

Sheryl at Providence Acres Farm said...

I am being very careful where I pour it.

Tonia, burdock leaves are very healing too and are prescribed for burns in other countries. I'm making a healing herbal salve this summer too, and it will include burdock leaves.

I figure we'll probably use most of it for sunburn in the spring.

Burdock root oil (buroil) is also good for your scalp and dandruff.

Sheryl at Providence Acres Farm said...

Even though they are useful, they're a pain when the burrs stick to everything and get tangled up in fur and hair. I used to work to rid the property of them, along with large bull thistles, but gave up this year on the burdock. We are drowning in it this year. There are very few Bull thisles now, however and that's encouraging.

Rose H (UK) said...

You really must try Dandylion and Burdock Sheryl! As children it was MORE popular than Coke or Pepsi - in fact I'd love a glass of it right now ;o)
Interesting to read the herbal uses for it too.

Boiling Pot said...

There is nothing lovelier than letting the weeds/herbs/grass grow and then shave them with the mower. The effect is ethereal. I just saw this recently at the Int'l Peace Garden and was taken with it.

Jayme said...

I will DEFINATELY be tring this!! Thanks for the tip!