You’ve lived in your home for 15 years and tried to be a good neighbor. You don’t host loud parties, you keep your house in good shape and your neighbors know they can count on you to pick up their mail while they’re on vacation.
Then one day, you get a new neighbor. He blares music at 2 a.m., owns a dog that never stops barking and parks a beat-up car in his front yard.
If your lawn and garden could talk, they’d tell you this is how they think of weeds: the nuisance neighbor driving down property values and generally making life miserable.
As anyone in the residential and commercial weed control field can tell you, weeds are more than just unwelcome; they can do some serious harm.
Here are four ways weeds can damage the plants on your lawn or in your garden.
1. Weeds can cut off your plants food supply
Your plants need water, light and nutrients to survive. So do weeds. And to paraphrase the old westerns, this yard isn’t big enough for the two of them.
If your plants aren’t getting enough nitrogen, potassium and other nutrients, they become more susceptible to disease and insect infestation. And as weeds suck up nutrients from the soil, this can not only cause plants to wither, it can lead to abnormal fruit growth and color.
2. Weeds take up the space your plants need to grow
Weeds compete with plants for space, which can keep plants from reaching their full potential. Left alone, weeds can blanket an entire garden and begin to threaten other nearby plants.
3. Some weeds are parasites
Parasitic weeds do more than just compete with your plants for space and nutrients. They’ll attach themselves to the stems or roots of your healthy plants and drain them of their nutrients, leaving them open for disease and infestation.
4. Weeds can hurt more than just your plants
Some weeds can have a negative impact on your health as well as the health of your plants, as anyone who’s ever suffered from a ragweed allergy can tell you. Other weeds cause skin irritation, while plants like water hyacinth can affect the quality of your water if they grow into your water supply.
How can I keep weeds out of my garden?
You’ve put a lot of work into your garden. The last thing you want is to lose your flowers or this year’s crop of tomatoes to weeds.
Here are a few commercial weed control methods for keeping your gardens safe:
- Eliminate bare soil – Bare soil offers weeds an easy place to set down roots. By spreading mulch over this soil, you can cut back on future weed growth while also preventing soil erosion.
- Stop tilling – Tilling your garden soil is basically doing the weeds’ work for them. When you till, you’re taking weed seeds that are at the surface of the dirt and moving them into the soil.
- Cover crops – Planting cover crops in the fall protects your soil in the winter and early spring by forming a barrier that prevents weed seeds from taking root.
Keeping weeds off your lawn
Maintaining a green, healthy lawn is hard enough without adding weeds into the mix. If you’ve noticed weeds popping up among your grass, follow these tips to help root them out.
- Raise your mower blades – Routine mowing can keep weeds from sprouting. If you’ve just mowed but notice new weeds popping up, you can go over the grass again with your mower blades at a higher setting.
- Change your watering schedule – Instead of watering your lawn frequently and lightly, change things around by giving the grass more water, but less often. This makes your grass stronger and more able to fend off weeds.
- Use the right herbicides – You can’t just pick an herbicide off the shelf and expect it to end your weed problems. Different herbicides are designed to target different kinds of weeds. Choosing the wrong one could damage your grass and have zero effect on the weeds on your lawn.
Are you tired of battling weeds on your own? Turn to the residential and commercial weed control experts at Realty Landscaping.
Business owner and homeowners throughout the Philadelphia area have counted on us for years to keep their lawns and gardens happy, healthy and weed-free. Contact us today to learn more.