Weeding tools of the trade
A day spent weeding is productive day, but can be monotionous and repetitive. Photo - photolibrary.com
Here is a call to action. Now is the time to rid your lawn of those dreaded little nasties before its too late. Read on for the weeding tools that do the job properly and are a pleasure to handle.
Deep rooted weeds - Dandelion trowel
The Sneeboer Dandelion trowel is a long and strong weeder with a lovely timber handle. It’s extremely sharp, with a reversed point, which is perfect for slicing through the soil and cutting a deep tap root. That makes it ideal for dandelions and other deep-rooted weeds. www.heaveninearth.com.au
Shallow rooted weeds - Winged weeder
This long-handled weeding tool has an arrow-shaped head to allow weeding while standing up. It’s best for fine weeds with and surface roots,
such as chickweed. Just scrape it over the soil and the tempered spring steel blade will put out everything in its path. Using a push-pull motion you
can weed and aerate at the same time. Available from Burgon and Ball and www.qualityproducts.com.au.
Perennial weeds in grass or paving - Weeding wand
A weeding wand specifically applies non-specific herbicide onto the leaves of the weed only, meaning you can treat weeds growing between ‘good’ plants. It’s especially useful for perennial weeds with corms or bulbs such as onion weed, nutgrass and onion grass. Apply several brush strokes across each weed, using a brushing and dabbing action. Again the shape and length of this tool means you avoid bending. After application, ensure that the brush is rinsed, the safety cap screwed on and the brush hung out of reach of children and away from sunlight. Avoid skin contact as you would with any other herbicide. Available from Yates.
Broad scale weeds - remove sunlight
One of the simplest ways of killing weeds is to cover them with a square of old carpet or black plastic (secured with a brick or pegged into place) to cut out the light and stop photosynthesis. It is time consuming, particularly if you have lots of weeds, but it’s certainly effective. Leave for a few weeks then remove.
Paving weeds –Beat-a-weed
A new generation of organic herbicides, such as Beat-a-Weed, have been developed which kill annual and biennial weeds. Interceptor, for instance is based on pine oil and rapidly desiccates weeds. Spray on a hot day to watch them wither and die. Available from hardware stores
Asthma Weed- steam weeder
Asthma weed grows all year round in the Sydney area causing hay fever and irritations. Steam weed control machines eliminate the need for chemicals . They work by increasing the temperature of the moisture in the plant’s cells, causing the cell to rupture. Many councils are now employing this method as a safe and responsible solution to large areas of weeds. A hand-held domestic steam cleaner will also do the job.
Garden Clinic Club member’s tips:
Mulch - your gardens thickly and often, reducing the number of weeds setting seed.
Oxalis – drip machine oil into the centre of the plant to drown the bulb
Onion weed – drip Zero into the centre of each plant with an eyedropper
Paving weeds – use water from a just-boiled kettle to pour on weeds