Lawn "wipe out"

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by cenlo, Jul 27, 2004.

  1. cenlo

    cenlo LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ontario
    Posts: 322

    I have 3 customers with small properties with 80% weeds.(These people are not going to use chemicals) I have tried vinegar, but they "all" come back. I have tried the salt stick and the infra-weeder with no success. If I tarp the property with a black tarp for two weeks will it kill the entire root system? Has anyone done this? Or is their any other alternatives? And again I have talked to these people about using an application of a "tri-kill" but it is out of the question for these individuals.


    Thanks in advance, Cenlo
     
  2. dan deutekom

    dan deutekom LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 424

    I don't know if 2 weeks would be long enough. You would have to exclude light for a long enough period so that the weeds roots will starve out due to the lack of photosyntheses. Some may be gone in that time but some large deep rooted weeds probably need more time.
     
  3. trying 2b organic

    trying 2b organic LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 566

    I am suprised and disappointed to hear that the weeds came back after the vinegear. Mind you the chem guys use Roundup twice for a kill and till. maybe its the same thing, maybe it needs to be hit a second time after the first kill, Input from others plz.
     
  4. dan deutekom

    dan deutekom LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 424

    I havn't tried using the vinegar twice in this type of case because of the expense but I suspect that it would take 3 or 4 applications of vinegar. Maybe if you apply vinegar and then till after it burns off, wait for it to resprout and apply vinegar and re till again?
     
  5. trying 2b organic

    trying 2b organic LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 566

    I would never actually till a lawn as part of a reno. A reno im finding is the toughest part of being organic. People used to tell me you need herbicides to help get the lawn in order before you can go fully organic and I didnt buy it, now im not so sure.
    The only organic option I would use would be hand weeding then topdressing and overseeding. I expect you will have more weeds in the new lawn however, with this method. But to till up turf seems crazy amount of work, the vinegear apparently doesnt work.
    Ok, im thinking as I type but if you have a customer that is adamant to reno a lawn without herbicides I would, hand pull broadleafs, scalp with mower, aerate heavilty, and topdress/overseed. With the disclaimer that it will be much improved but not weed free. The new lawn will have less weeds and can be kept at a reasonable tolerance threshold with yearly over-seeding and a bit of hand weeding.
    btw I get much faster and better germination when i sprinkle peat moss on the seed, anyone else do that?
     
  6. cenlo

    cenlo LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ontario
    Posts: 322

    maybe it needs to be hit a second time after the first kill, Input from others plz.

    I have one lawn that I sprayed three times approx. 3-5 days between sprays. Then about a week later I went back and aerated, vertisliced with new seed, and fertilized. When I did this there was nothing but dirt and some dried up weeds. I went back about 10-14 days later to view progress and there were about 90% weeds!:confused: The root system must be deep and strong! I just don't want to go back and cover her lawn with a tarp for three weeks and end up with the same problem.(I already feel like an idiot!
     
  7. cenlo

    cenlo LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ontario
    Posts: 322

    The problem is that we can't kill the roots! When you hand pull you just can't get the entire root system. (And believe me I have pulled alot of weeds this year) It all looks good for a week or two, and then back to square one. Out of about 50 lawns which we spent an average of about 8-10 man hours pulling weeds only one made a huge difference. The soil was very wet and the root system was pulled out (approx. 18"-24" long) this property was 80% weeds and after I session of hand pulling it is now about 5%! (But the other 49 looked like crap!:confused: )
    So...........I decided to use 1 controlled spray of Trilliun to get the weeds under control to give the organics and CGM a fighting chance. (And to avoid bankruptcy:))
     
  8. ProMo

    ProMo LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,468

    the plastic will work if it gets hot enough to sterilize the soil, then you will need organic material to replace the bacteria.
     
  9. Lawn Sharks

    Lawn Sharks LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 394

    The plastic will do the trick as others have said but I find it takes about 5-6 weeks. I have a friend that installs those plastic putting greens that you put sand on and he gives me odd pieces that work great for killing large areas, It is heavy, doesn't get blown around by the wind, allows water through and looks kinda like grass. I use it for problem areas and not whole lawns as I don't have enough of it.
     
  10. cenlo

    cenlo LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ontario
    Posts: 322

    Keth, would you know the name of this product or a source I could look up on the internet? Thanks, Cenlo
     

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