A Guide to Safely Remove Unwanted Plants Growing Between Patio Bricks
Weeds, grass, and other unwanted green plants growing between patio bricks, pavers, flagstones, or pathways can be a major eyesore and take away from the manicured look of your landscape. Fortunately, there are several methods you can use to control and kill plants in between bricks. Which one you choose will depend on your budget, the ease of the method, and the level of effectiveness you need.
If you want a long-term solution, a good way to start from scratch is to remove the bricks and begin again. This may be a labor-intensive job, but it is an effective way of putting an end to unprotected areas letting weeds, grass, and other plants establish and grow. To do this, stack each brick and replace any that are cracked or damaged. Then churn up the soil to remove unwanted growth and mix a weed control product directly into the soil before compacting it down again. You can then cover the area with landscaper’s ground cloth to prevent weeds and grass from returning. Then apply a thin layer of sand over the top before replacing the bricks and filling any cracks with sand.
Using rock salt is another way of getting rid of those unwanted plants. You can either apply a small handful of rock salt directly around the base of plants you don’t want, or mix salt in hot water and apply it directly to the plants. Whichever method you choose, there will be some leaching from the salt that can potentially discolor your patio bricks as well as creating a danger to grass, shrubs, or garden plots in the area.
Distilled white vinegar can also be an effective method of eliminating weeds, particularly when they are first starting to take hold. To use this method, simply pour a gallon of vinegar directly onto the unwanted plants and within a few hours, the plants will start to brown and be ready to sweep away.
The use of a flame weeder is another way to get rid of unwanted plants. A flame weeder is a long wand that attaches to a standard propane tank (not included). Using this tool, you simply point and shoot the flame at the unwanted plants between the gaps of the brick and the plants will usually die once the leaves have been burned. Be sure to be precise and not over do it, as too much flame will scorch and discolor your patio bricks.
Lastly, although many weed-control products on the market are only short term solutions, as they only treat topically and don’t work on the roots. However, they can be well-used in the right way. These solutions are often used when the weed problem is slightly out of control and the other methods aren’t working. To reduce or eliminate the possibility of weed growth, it is important to check the direction of your watering system and make sure any spray is not feeding areas of your patio.
If you’re looking for a quick fix to make your patio look neat and clean again, a weedeater can help you to cut the weeds right down to the ground meaning they are ready to sweep away.
Weeds and plants in between patio bricks are never nice to look at but luckily, there are many methods to exterminate them and make your patio look its best. Ultimately, what method you use will depend on your budget and the level of effectiveness you need. It may take some experimentation to find the best method for your needs. Whichever method you choose, it is important to remember that to effectively ‘kill’ them all and make sure they don’t come back, addressing the roots is important.