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Seven Natural Solutions for Weeds and Pests

Apr 24, 2020Gardening, General

As the warmer weather of spring merges with the wet weather of the Pacific Northwest, weeds can seem to multiply in your landscaping overnight. It is tempting to reach for that bottle of chemical weed-killer – but be forewarned. Chemical weed-killers have a long list of drawbacks. Not only are they expensive, harmful to other plants, pets and children, but most of all, they leach into water supplies as rain water travels into storm drains. Instead, we recommend you check out this list of natural solutions that keeps you and the ecosystem around you happy.

Seven Natural Solutions for Weeds and Pests


Pour a basic white vinegar into a spray bottle and apply directly to pesky weeds. For best results, don’t bother diluting with water. If possible, try to choose a time to apply when there’s a few days following without rain. If you’re applying weeds that are near other plants you don’t want to kill, use a piece of cardboard to shield them, and be careful not to over-soak the roots (this could spread to the roots of nearby plants as well).

Dish Detergent

Mix a solution of 1 part liquid dish detergent to 10 parts water. Soak the pesky growth with this mix. Use the advice above to avoid killing surrounding plants. After the weeds are dead, pull them up root and all.


If you need something stronger, you can combine 1 1/4 cups of table salt with 1 gallon of household vinegar and spray where needed. But be warned: you should only use salt where you are not trying to grow anything else. It sterilizes the soil, so it’s best to use only for weeds growing in sidewalks, driveways or between patio stones.

Lemon Juice

Don’t have vinegar on hand? You can use straight lemon juice instead.

Boiling Water

Probably the quickest and easiest solution to many weeds is to plug in the kettle, bring water to a boil then pour the hot liquid over them. Within a few hours they should be dead and easy to pull up, roots and all. Once again, be careful of surrounding plants – and avoid using this method in areas with grass or ground cover.


Speaking of ground cover, buckwheat is one of the easiest and quickest cover options that can be used to suppress weeds and improve soil. It loves moist, not over-hot weather and can help break up disease cycles, add nutrients to the soil, and attract beneficial pollinators. Its thick ground cover prevents and shoulders-out weeds until it dies at the end of summer.


It may seem obvious, but the old saying is still true – an ounce of prevention really is worth a pound of cure. Try catching weeds while just sprouting and pulling them out, root and all, to prevent their quick spreading. Use beneficial and attractive ground covers, maintain healthy and thick lawns, and consider trimming thick trees or shrubs that prevent sunlight and encourage moss. You – and your landscaping – will thank yourself later! 

If all of these ideas are creating a vision of a lush, well cared for, weed-free landscape, but you just don’t know where to start, then we are here to help! 

The Mountain View Landscapes team offers professional lawn care for all types of residential and commercial properties all over Gresham, Troutdale, Sandy, Damascus, Fairview, Welches, Estacada and Boring. Through a range of customized services, our expert lawn maintenance services help keep your lawn lush and weed-free all year long! 

Looking for commercial landscape maintenance? Check out our year-round Total Grounds Care package.

Whatever your needs, our team of professionals is here to help your landscaping dreams come to life! Contact us today to get started!



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