Re: Vinegar for weed control

Discussion in 'Garden Pest Management and Identification' started by Lysichiton, Nov 8, 2009.

  1. Lysichiton

    Lysichiton Active Member

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    Photo attached.
    Re previous discussions & threads about vinegar for weed control.

    I recently bought Allen's Double Strength (10%) Cleaning Vinegar in 2.5L bottles at Coopers (Save-On Group) in the Okanagan. So this stuff is out there - some places.
    10% acetic acid seems to be a recommendation for weed control on some websites & in some books. Adding detergent is mentioned also.

    Note: Acetic acid is not, as far as I am aware, officially sanctioned as a weed killer in BC. Take care, use your own judgement & the experience of others.

    Note: My elementary chemistry tells me not to mix this with anything basic (alkaline) or containing "bleach" chemicals. You will produce gaseous CO2 with the former & possibly a toxic gas with the latter.
     

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  2. janetdoyle

    janetdoyle Active Member

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    In Nova Scotia a neighbour used a salt and vinegar mix to make a really toxic anti-weed treatment for a stone driveway which had weeds tending to come up between the cobblestones. You wouldn't want it getting near other plant roots you want to keep, but it surely was a fine safe anti-weed treatment. Sort of like pickle juice... I am interested in your Allen's 10% cleaning vinegar and will try to get some here at Save-On Foods here in Victoria, because I use it to clean/dissolve a white residue on some cedar siding which was stained with an inadequate opaque stain which produced a white exudate, for which acetic acid is a cleaner-dissolver of exudate. The regular low-percentage vinegar is not really strong enough and the paint maker used strong acetic acid mixed with some soap and water, I believe, to clean it up, but the white powder re-appears here and there and needs cleaning off. Ordinary water just spreads it around...
     
  3. Michael F

    Michael F Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years of Activity

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    Wouldn't it be better to treat your sidings with some adequate opaque stain??
     
  4. bob 2

    bob 2 Active Member

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    AFAIK horticultural vinegar is not registered for use in Canada.

    There ae several reasons for this but this is not the place to discuss them.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2009
  5. janetdoyle

    janetdoyle Active Member

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    That's interesting... I wouldn't use chemicals which have animal/human or more intrusive plant effects but I don't think I would let lack of approval for vinegar somewhere stop me! I support government and social controls over chemical treatments of our environment, for sure, but one has to use common sense too. The siding, re the above comment, is not seriously impacted enough to require a complete re-stain job, the last stain applied just exudes a bit here and there of the powdery residue in certain corners where it does not get constantly washed off by rain, not noticeable or severe enough to redo it, fortunately. It will be redone in due course.
     
  6. PhillyPalms

    PhillyPalms Active Member

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    We use it all the time. Plain cheap vinegar by the gallon. We treat the weeds in the cracks of the sidewalk, and it works. In my opinion, it's a lot safer than Round up.

    If I'm hurting the environment with my edible product, please let me know. I'll switch to an herbacide... Yeh, right.
     
  7. togata57

    togata57 Rising Contributor

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    PhillyPalms, I have used straight white vinegar on stubborn, inaccessible crabgrass that grew out of the cracks in my driveway. Worked great. ---Tried this after reading about it in "Hints from Heloise". Of course, if it kills weeds it will kill other plants too, so one must be just as careful in its application as with any plant-toxic substance.

    As we FINALLY got a new driveway---whole thing dug up and redone from gravel up to asphalt---vinegar no longer necessary! A thing of beauty, and (I'm hoping) a joy forever.
     
  8. bob 2

    bob 2 Active Member

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    As far as I can see the acetic acid would act as a protoplasmic poison on whatever it lands on and kill beneficial micro organisms in the soil as well as the unwanted vegetation.
    As with commercial preparations, it would be best applied directly to the offending plant material with care not to let it soak into the soil.
    Application of salt (Nacl) is not a good idea at any time.
    I mention this because it seems to be recommended quite often by certain groups interested in plants.


    http://oregonstate.edu/dept/nursery-weeds/weedspeciespage/acetic_acid_factsheet.pdf


    Bob
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2010
  9. Millet

    Millet Well-Known Member 10 Years of Activity

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    It really would not matter much if Vinegar (dilute acetic acid) went into the soil or not. Being an organic acid, its life span in the soil is quite short. - Millet (1,094-)
     
  10. bob 2

    bob 2 Active Member

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    The salt formed when when vinegar hits the soil is most often Sodium acetate.

    Sodium chloride and sodium acetate are easily leached and they do not biodegrade however.
    Depending on the use of this rather weak "herbicide" that there can be significant amounts of Sodium acetate produced.
     
  11. Millet

    Millet Well-Known Member 10 Years of Activity

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    Bob, personally, I would not worry about it. Myself, I never use vinegar as a weed killer, as there are much better herbicides available. However, those that would use vinegar, normally use it as a spot spray. The amount of possible sodium would be minuscule. However, if a residue would be a concern to the Gardner, then simply not use it. - Millet (1,004-)
     
  12. bob 2

    bob 2 Active Member

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    Millet, I have no fears of it as well as it is not one of the tools in my current arsenal.
    With the rapid increase in interest from the fringe elements of horticulture there are continous suggestions of using it as a general herbicide with some even quoting cost per acre to apply it.
    That for me sets up a whole new set of concerns given that fact that it is not fully tested as far as the residual effect are concerned.
    Many institutions that have studied it recommend against it's wholesale use.
    I was speaking to that primarialy.

    Bob
     
  13. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member

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    Hot water in a kettle will also kill weeds in driveways. I normaly hand weed but some of the stuff was getting away. It did the trick. I always pick a hot day for extra heat.

    Liz
     

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