In September, I moved from Seattle back to the East Coast, which meant moving from a one-bedroom apt in to a townhouse with a deck and a small (okay, very small) area for gardening, which I'm so happy about! But the location I live in now has a fair amount of rain, abundant sun, and rich soil, which is the perfect storm for weeds. I know one woman's weed is another woman's dandelion, but those little buggers choke out my flowers and other plants, and I just can't seem to keep up with them!
I've been trying to formulate a natural herbicide for awhile; something that won't harm the environment in any way & is safe for me to breathe, but that's still effective in eradicating my weed problem. Here's what I've come up with.
- 2 cups white distilled vinegar
- 1/2 cup salt
- 1/4 cup powdered citric acid
- 1/4 cup witch hazel
- 15 drops lavender essential oil
- 15 drops chamomile essential oil
- 1/4 cup wheat germ oil
Heat the vinegar in a saucepan until it comes to a boil (be sure to open those windows!). Remove from the heat, add the salt, and stir until it dissolves. Then add in all other ingredients. Pour into a large spray bottle. You'll spray this directly onto the weed that is a problem, especially near the roots. Apply the solution while still hot for best results.
This formula is great for getting rid of weeds, even poison ivy, but keep in mind that it will kill any plant it touches, so be sure you're only getting the plants you want dead.
Maybe your problem isn't the weeds, but the bugs. If that's the case, I have a natural debugger. This isn't a pesticide, as it won't kill the bugs, just keep them away from your home and garden. Here's what you'll need:
- a small onion
- 5 cloves garlic, skin on
- olive oil
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 cups water
- 1 teaspoon liquid castile soap
Add the onion and garlic to a blender or food processor and process until it comes to a pulp. Put the pulp in a bowl or cup, and cover with just enough olive oil to soak overnight. In the morning, strain off the olive oil into a jar, and add the cayenne. Allow this to sit for several days. When needed, add 1 teaspoon of this oil blend to the water and castile soap to a spray bottle. Be sure to shake before use.