Weed Killer Recipe – Kill Weeds Without Pesticides

Weed Killer Recipe - Kill Weeds Without Pesticides


The other weekend my husband mentioned something weird: he was going to spray our 1 million dandelions with vinegar. Umm. Ok. I thought he was insane (well, after almost 10 years together I already knew he was crazy, but this was almost solid proof, ha).

My daughter and I decided to wander away for a walk while we left him to his vinegar spraying job. Two hours later we came home to a vinaigrette smelling yard. No joke, it smelled like a crazy salad. This made me think my husband really had lost it this time with our salad-smelling-yard.

One week later… I was proven wrong. He knew how to kill weeds the most tree-hugging way he could come up with: Vinegar + Soap. I had no idea he was doing all this research. I am usually the more earth-friendly person in this family, so when the hubs participates in my hippie ways I love it.

Our weed killer recipe worked! Our weeds were dying less than a week later. This made pulling them out about 1 million times easier. The lack of massive chemicals made me smile and the local squirrels and birdies threw a party (the wildlife is crazy here).

All that matters is my husband was right. Dang. I’m admitting it.

Here’s the formula: 2 cups white vinegar and 1 tablespoon dish soap. Blended into a spray bottle (P.S. I’ve heard a little bit of salt added to this mixture helps). FYI: It’s pretty important to do this on a warm and sunny day to draw out the moisture.

Weed Killer Recipe - Kill Weeds Without Pesticides

So, here’s a little fancy smart info for you: Vinegar removes moisture… which means, when sprayed on foliage, the water in the leaves is drawn out. This can’t guarantee the killing of the root (if it’s an old weed it might be harder to get rid of). Adding soap to your vinegar helps break down the waxy coating on the foliage. The plant is more susceptible to the active ingredient, vinegar. Yup: awesome.

Note: avoid spraying this on plants you want to keep alive.

– Chelsey

The Paper Mama Shop


  • Rook on said:

    If you ad salt to this mixture, it will encourage toxic amounts of salt to build up in your garden and kill everything.

  • Jen Daily on said:

    I will add this to my arsenal. I've been fighting fleas and dirt with all natural methods, but haven't yet got around to weed control 😉

  • Jess Judkins on said:

    Your husband is genius! I am going to do this when we get back home from California

  • Meghan on said:

    Holy cow, I'm totally trying this! Well, I'm making some and giving it to my husband to use. haha

  • courtney @larking. on said:

    I've used a similar concoction on the little weeds that come up in the cracks in our driveway, but haven't tried it in the yard. What does it do to your grass? Do you have dead spots now?

    • The Paper Mama on said:

      I haven't noticed. But, we get so much darn rain, maybe it just grows back?

  • Mandee on said:

    Did you have to be really careful about getting it on the plants? I"m wondering if this mixture could also kill my plants! I have some weeds growing in my lettuce pots as well as bugs on them and I was wondering if this would work as well!

  • Audrey on said:

    Oof, I'd be careful about salting your lawn unless you don't want anything to grow in that spot. But I'm stoked about this tip, we actually eat our dandelions in the spring which keeps their numbers low since we're uprooting them, but we have these bizarro plants that get slimy if you accidentally break the stalk..slimy. Gross. I'm going to see if this will work on those beasts!

  • Salvaged Strawberry on said:

    Um, this is amazing and we have a whole freaking yard full of dandelions right now, and I am constantly picking them only to wake up to 200 new ones! 🙂 hah! Thanks so much! Also, did you know that a mixture of vinegar/dawn soap/baking soda gets stains out of clothes. It's my new favorite thing! 🙂

  • Amanda N. on said:

    This is fantastic!! Thank you so much for sharing! My 12 month old and our dog are always in our backyard. I've been trying to find a natural weed killer like this. Now I don't have to worry about their safety =] Thank you!!! I wonder if it would work on moss?? This dang Oregon weather.. Hmm

  • Maryam on said:

    Uhhhh this is awesome. Also, do you know if it'll kill grass too?

  • Alyssa S. on said:

    I had no idea! I've planted a container garden of summer veggies and just learned I need to worry about bugs (ACK)! I've been Googling all natural pest control formulas and I'm going to be trying out mixing canola oil, dish soap and water to keep away squash bugs! I sure hope it works because I am NOT up for using poisons!!

  • Andrea on said:

    You just saved my life.

  • Tara on said:

    awesome! Love it!

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