How to weed a garden

Spring is here…finally. And at long last flowers are beginning to wake from their winter sleep and fill our gardens.

It’s been an arduous, wet winter and it has felt, at times, like it would never end. But now, flowers are blossoming with renewed hope of a glorious summer on the horizon.

But flowers are not the only plants growing…weeds are starting to flourish and must be stopped in their tracks before they take over.

Weeds are prolific and, if left unattended, will grow rampantly across lawns and flower beds strangling plants and taking over space which should be occupied by your grass.  Weeding can be an on-going challenge and a task you should start now and try to keep on top of throughout the year. Before you start, make sure you have the right tools for the job – either a trowel or a weed puller with a V shaped steel head specifically designed for the task. Gloves are also handy as it can be a messy business.

It’s a fatal mistake to simply grab the weed by the leaves and tug. In doing so you will not only leave the roots in place but could also spread the weed’s seeds further. Instead, use your weed puller or trowel to dig out the weed making sure you have fully removed all the roots so there is no chance of grow back.

A top tip is to weed after it has rained when the soil is moist and looser. In drought conditions, the soil is tight and doesn't give up weeds easily meaning you might leave a bit of root behind. You can also loosen the soil with your trowel or weeder to ensure the roots come out cleanly.

If you have a particularly large or stubborn weed, you might want to use a Japanese hoe, a fork or even a spade to dig it out. This might cause an unsightly hole in the lawn especially if the weed has grown rapidly but most of the soil and grass can be separated from the root and stamped back into the lawn where it will recover.

Heavy duty lawn weeders are also handy tools which can be used by pressing them into the ground and then twisting them to clinically remove the unwanted weeds.

There is also a selection of weed killers which are useful for clearing patios and driveways. However, caution is advised when using chemical weed killer in the garden as some could kill off your grass as well as the weeds but we also stock specific weed killers for lawns, which kill the weeds and not the grass.

Once you have dug out your weeds, make sure you dispose of them carefully. Use a garden recycling bag or incinerate them. Composting is always good practice but not necessarily with weeds as you don’t want them to regrow and spread their seeds across your garden.

Unfortunately, weeding is an on-going process. The aggressive plants will come back throughout the year and are pretty resilient so need to be kept in check. The rewards, however, are certainly worth it as you sit back and watch your garden grow.

For more information on our range of weed control solutions or any other gardening tips, contact our experts at our garden centre in Marks Tey or browse the website at