Vinegar Weed Kill: How to Make and Use Vinegar

Any homeowners also have to face garden weeds. Luckily, there is a number of ways to help you control weed growth, including chemical and natural weed killer. And vinegar is one of the best solutions involved in organic options of weed control which is less harsh than other herbicides.

However, just because vinegar is considered a natural weed killer doesn’t mean either it is an effective weed killer. The acetic acid in vinegar provides power to kill weeds. And you will not want the acetic acid to reach all the areas in your garden since it will damage other plants in your landscape.

Vinegar is cheap and natural. That’s why it has become the most popular solution to prevent weeds, excepting some limitations of vinegar. Keep reading to find out how vinegar works and how to use vinegar most effectively!

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Annual Weeds

Learn to know the time when annual weeds start seeding and grow new generations here. In determining a timely, applying vinegar once is enough and doesn’t damage other areas. Depending on the types of annual weeds, you will need to take action from early spring for summer annual weeds, or autumn for winter ones.

Perennial Weeds

Perennial weeds are more difficult to defeat because of their generating characteristic. Perennials, dandelions, in particular, can regrow although their leaves and new seeds are eliminated. They survive through their roots if you don’t apply enough methods to kill them several times. After each time, each root system will weaken and after repeated spraying, the weeds will find death!


It is acetic acid in vinegar that makes vinegar a weed killer which breaks down the cell walls and draws all the moisture from plants. The vinegar you usually use in the kitchen, typically white vinegar, is labeled 5%. It means the vinegar in the kitchen contains 5% acidity inside. Although 5% of acid could be applied to weeds, it doesn’t bring the most effective because of a few limitations.

It is fast but non-selective. Spraying full strength of vinegar into the gardens on a sunny day will give you the result just after a few hours. For tougher weeds, it often takes to the next day. However, non-selective vinegar means that it will kill any other plant it touches. So, you need to be so careful not to overspray and kill your desirable plants.



The typical vinegar you use in the kitchen is 5% vinegar, which means contains 5% acetic acid and 95% water. This type of vinegar weed killer is best used on small and annual weeds with several applications to best prevent weeds. You can also add a tablespoon of dish soap with a cup of table salt to a gallon of white vinegar to kill the top of the weed, but not its roots. Be careful with the salt build-up in the soil from your homemade mixture because it can hide something growing on it.

dishwashing soap

However, white vinegar weed killers in the store cannot work well with older weeds, perennials, or grasses when you spray vinegar on them. Because the root system of these plants is so tough that requires a 20% vinegar solution. This type of vinegar weed killer is also known as horticultural vinegar pesticides.


Although vinegar weed killer can permanently eliminate broadleaf weeds, perennials and older weeds can grow back anyway. You have to reapply several times to be effective. However, you shouldn’t apply more than every two weeks. Vinegar will not kill the root as other chemical sprays unless you apply it directly to the roots.

garden weeds

Vinegar is nonselective that will harm flower beds and good plants in the entire of your garden. In lawn areas, if you use vinegar for killing weeds, it will create some patches of brown lawn and lose your attractive landscape. So when reapplying for a natural weed killer like vinegar, you should stay away from grassy areas.

Moreover, the odor of vinegar is unpleasant to smell! It can affect your hand skin and create an allergic reaction. When you expose your hand to vinegar more frequently, it can cause many health problems.

allergic skin


First, you need to determine all the equipment and materials required to make vinegar recipes at home. You will need a spray bottle, protective gloves, face mask, protective eyewear, horticultural vinegar, liquid dish soap, and water. Next, we will show you how to make proper vinegar weed killer to best work with step-by-step instructions!

You will wonder why we need to make that mixture instead of spraying directly vinegar. Well, although vinegar is the main ingredient, combining it with soap and salt will make this type of weed killer work best. The combination of salt and vinegar will dissolve the plant’s cell walls and dishwashing soap will work as a facilitator of making this mixture more effectively.

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Step 1: Wait for the Right Condition

You will need to wait for the forecast of a warm and dry day with full sun. Vinegar weed killer will burn weeds best under dry conditions with the sun. Because rain will wash the vinegar off from the foliage and if you let the grass wet, the real damage to weeds would not be effective!

sunny day

Step 2: Wear Protection

Whenever you use vinegar or chemicals on garden weeds, wearing gloves and other protection clothes is required for your safety. These clothes include eye and hand protection that protect your skin from any potential irritation. Also, you should wear sleeves and long pants for the best protection, especially on windy days when spraying.

hand protection

Step 3: Test pH

Vinegar would make the pH of the soil lower and more acidic. Also, you will need to check the acidity of the mixture and find more sensible acidity options for your soil. If your soil is already acidic, this weed killer will not be an option. It’s just best for alkaline soil with weeds.

Step 4: Apply the Mixture to Control Weeds

Careful spray with a spray bottle on the weed area which you want to control. You can also use a paintbrush to paint directly onto the weeds so as not to damage other plants in the garden. If you use the sprayer, make sure you just pull the trigger once you reach the target weed!

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For the best result of removing the weeds in your garden, it’s better for most gardeners to find your local professional. They have experience and the right tools for each work of this project. You can easily search the list of professionals with a large number of comments on the Internet. In which, you can examine whether that company is good or bad enough to make the right choice for your gardening. No one wants to waste their money and time on the worst address.

Green Arbor Landscaping

Green Arbor Landscaping is renowned as a 35-year qualified and experienced landscaping company. Since 1998, Green Arbor has offered various services packages and serves customers all around Bothell, Issaquah, Renton, Maple Valley, Bellevue, and the surrounding communities. The products Green Arbor serves are diversified. See the list of our products.

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