Once again, the blogosphere is full of recipes for weed killer, lawn restorer, insecticides, etc., all containing dish detergent. Most of them call specifically for Dawn, although I recently encountered someone promoting Joy instead. The most popular herbicide recipe includes vinegar and dish detergent. Some add Epsom salts. Others add plain table salt. It’s a supposedly “organic” or “natural” alternative to a purchased product.
Every so often I come across an article that explains something so much better than I ever could. This is one of those times.
Tsu Dho Nimh writes a blog called Lazy Gardening SMACKDOWN. Back in 2013, he tackled the viral advice about making your own herbicide out of vinegar, detergent, and some other ingredients. I’ve been meaning to cover this topic, because this homemade “herbicide” doesn’t work. But then I saw Nimh’s article, and realized that he did a much more thorough job of explaining it all.
One of my perverse pleasures is perusing Pintrest to find bad garden advice. There’s certainly no lack of misinformation on the web, and Pintrest seems to collect it all. Most advice is simply a waste of time and money—sprinkling Epsom salts on your plants, spraying weeds with vinegar, pouring beer on your lawn. They don’t help, but they won’t kill your plants either. However, yesterday I came across a recommendation that will seriously damage your garden. I was so horrified that I immediately sat down to write this post.
First the rain, then the heat. Throw in a few mosquitoes for good measure. It seems like forever since I’ve actually wanted to be out in my garden. Unfortunately, my garden reflects my neglect. Squash plants languish, beans droop, and those tomatoes are taking forever to ripen. Worst of all, the beds and paths that I so carefully weeded in June are now overgrown with flowering weeds.
In spite of its current state, this year’s garden has been an unqualified success, and I would call it a summer except for one urgent task remaining. I have to get rid of those weeds before the flowers turn to seeds! If I ignore them now, the problem will be a thousand times worse in the spring.