Will Vinegar Kill Weeds? (Yes, here’s how)

will vinegar kill weeds

Will Vinegar Kill Weeds? (Yes, here’s how)

If you’re wondering if vinegar will kill weeds, you’ve come to the right place. Yes, Vinegar works well to kill small weeds, but it can also damage nearby plants.

Because vinegar is highly acidic, it can actually burn plants. 

Moreover, it’s not effective at killing all weeds because it doesn’t reach the roots of larger weeds.

Why does Vinegar kill weed?

Weeds don’t like the acidity of vinegar, but you may not want to use it directly on your weeds.

If you really want to kill them, try combining vinegar with dish soap, which will break down the oils on the leaves and remove moisture from them.

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If this method doesn’t work for you, try mixing a cup of vinegar with a teaspoon of dish soap. Then, spray the mixture on your weeds and then wait for the salt to dissolve.

Vinegar doesn’t kill all weeds: here’s why

Although vinegar will kill weeds, it doesn’t kill large weeds. This is because small weeds only have shallow roots, while large weeds have deep roots.

When using vinegar to kill weeds, gardeners often mistake leaf dieback for plant death.

Although vinegar will knock back weeds, they will come back with a vengeance. This is the most common myth about vinegar, and why it doesn’t work as a long-term solution.

It does work as a true weed killer. The vinegar acts as a desiccant, so it will dry out any organic material that comes in contact with it. Vinegar is highly effective against weeds less than 2 weeks old, but it won’t kill them if they are already established.

This is because vinegar is low in acetic acid, hence, it’s advisable to purchase a vinegar product designed for horticulture.

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Vinegar is a non-selective herbicide

Vinegar is a nonselection herbicide that can be used in gardens and lawns. It is a nonselective herbicide that kills weeds without harming healthy soil microbes.

While it is effective at killing weeds, vinegar can damage healthy plants and may cause respiratory problems. Nevertheless, the nonselection property of vinegar makes it a risky herbicide.

Vinegar is effective against young annual broadleaf weeds. A solution of 20% vinegar kills over 90 percent of weeds within 24 hours. It should be applied to weed-filled areas during sunny days.

However, it must be noted that this herbicide is nonselective, and rain will wash away the herbicide from the weeds’ leaves.

You can also make your own vinegar herbicide by combining a gallon of white wine vinegar with one cup of salt and a tablespoon of liquid dish soap.

The concentration of the solution depends on the size of your garden, and you may need to apply it more than once if the weeds are extremely tough. The problem with using a homemade herbicide is that it is nonselective, and it will kill other plants and insects as well.

Vinegar is effective on small weeds

When spraying a garden with vinegar, it is important to remember that the acidity in the solution can damage valuable plants.

To minimize the risk of injury, apply the solution on warm, dry days. If the weather is wet, the weed killer will become ineffective.

If the weather is dry, however, you can spray the solution on any weeds. Be sure to avoid spraying the plants in the rain as this will dilute the acid content.

Commercial Vinegar

Commercial vinegars for weed control are much higher in acidity than household vinegar, with up to 75% acetic acid. Even though household vinegars contain only five percent acetic acid, they can be effective on small weeds.

In addition, 20% vinegar is more toxic than glyphosate, a popular weed killer. Because glyphosate kills many weeds with one application, using vinegar in this way kills only a small percentage of weeds.

While a commercial weed killer may contain additional ingredients, you will not see any noticeable results from the mixture.

Many commercial weed killers have additional ingredients to increase their potency and make them more durable. Some of these ingredients are added for marketing reasons, while others may just serve to broaden their effectiveness.

Ultimately, you need to make sure that you understand the risks of vinegar before using it. The benefits of vinegar are well worth the risk.

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Vinegar is safe to use

When used properly, it’s safe to use vinegar to kill invasive weeds. The best place to apply the solution is between the seams of concrete sidewalks and driveways.

However, you should be careful not to spray vinegar on your face or on other areas where it could cause skin irritation.

For larger areas, you may want to use a sprayer bottle or a pressure sprayer. For larger areas, you should use a high concentration of vinegar (at least 10%).

The concentration of the solution is not important as long as it’s applied to the weeds and not to the surrounding plants or soil.

You can also mix vinegar and liquid dish detergent in a spray bottle and apply it to your weeds.

However, be careful when spraying a solution on your lawn, since vinegar can burn sensitive skin and cause a rash.

You should also be aware that vinegar will not kill the weeds that are growing around your lawn, so it’s best to avoid using it on lawns with grass.

Vinegar is non-corrosive

The use of salt is an effective method of killing weeds. The weeds will be unable to grow back once the salt has been applied.

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It is non-corrosive and will kill weeds without harming your soil. To get rid of weeds, simply sprinkle a generous amount of salt on the weed-filled area. Do not overdo it, though, as it may take longer to pull the weeds.

You can use a homemade herbicide by mixing one gallon of white household vinegar with one cup of salt and a tablespoon of dish soap. However, you need to be careful to use the mixture on the weeds that you intend to kill, as boiling water can burn the leaves and root systems.

Another eco-friendly and safe weed killer is rubbing alcohol. Dilute the solution with one quart of water to make it safe for humans.

Another popular method is to apply 5% kitchen vinegar to weeds. However, higher concentrations of vinegar may cause skin and eye irritation.

Also, vinegar is non-selective, meaning it will kill all weeds it touches. It is best used on patios, driveways, and sidewalks, as it is non-corrosive and will kill weeds.

Vinegar is effective on bumblebees, worms, nematodes, and mycorrhizae

In one study, the native British bumblebee was remarkably susceptible to nematode pest control products.

After 72 hours, the number of dead bees reached an astonishing high point. The first deaths were visible after 48 hours. This surprisingly high bee mortality rate has not been previously documented.

In the second study, the same experimental procedure was repeated with different individual bees.

The treatment groups were randomized to different conditions. One colony was treated for the first 2 weeks and the other for the second two weeks.

The experimental group consisted of five individual bees for each treatment group. Eventually, a total of twenty individual bees were exposed to each treatment.

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A second study aimed to determine the effect of vinegar on these organisms. This study included three conidial formulations.

One contained 15 % glycerol, another contained 0.5 % yeast extract, and a third contained herbal extraction.

The three conidial formulations retained the same biocontrol efficacy as the fresh conidial. This study provides a feasible, inexpensive method to preserve E. vermicola.


Learn the power of vinegar in weed control! Our comprehensive guide explores whether vinegar effectively eliminates weeds from your garden. Uncover the truth behind this natural remedy, its application methods, and potential impacts on surrounding plants. Dive into our article to discover if vinegar is the solution to your weed woes.


All in all, Vinegar is potent enough to temporary get rid of weeds in your garden.

But you need to be careful when applying or spray it on your soil; you don’t want to damage your precious plants. 

A more long-term solution to getting rid of weeds could be to pull them off from their roots, use herbicides, and other effective agricultural means to permanently remove weeds.

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