How to Make a Homemade Weed Killer (Safe for Pets)

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Weeds are a natural enemy for anyone with a garden or a lawn because they can ruin all your hard work. These unwanted plants are persistent and hence grow even on perfect lawns.

Manual weeding is the most effective way to keep weeds off, but it is time-consuming and sometimes backbreaking, so why not make a natural weed killer with vinegar, dawn and salt?

While herbicides are effective in killing weeds, you should be wary of the chemicals in them since they can harm your garden and the environment as well.

A homemade recipe for killing weeds get rid of these pesky plants without causing adverse effects.

Therefore, keep reading to discover how to make a natural weed killer with vinegar, dawn and salt ingredients, what you’ll need, and how to use it.

How to Make a Homemade Weed Killer-Recipe

homemade weed killer recipe


You can make a natural weed killer using things easily found around your home.

For our recipe, here’s what you need to gather:

Vinegar is the main ingredient of this recipe; it breaks down the weed cells, preventing them from functioning. The salt will dry out the weed plants, inhibiting them from growing.

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On the other hand, dawn dish soap is a surfactant, lowering the mixture’s surface tension and allowing it to be absorbed into the plant instead of remaining on the surface.

Use salt sparingly because too much of it can damage the soil.

Alternatively, you can use borax but beware that it creates a potent weed killer.

You will use the bucket to mix the ingredients and the spoon to stir the liquid, ensuring it combines well, while the gloves protect your hands.


The acetic acid in vinegar increases the soil acidity, so plants will be hard to grow. For this reason, don’t use too much vinegar in areas you intend to grow flowers, plants, or grass.

Vinegar-based homemade weed killer is excellent for getting rid of weeds on walkways, driveway cracks, pavers, sidewalks, and rocked areas, and it also comes in handy if you want to get rid of ants. However, it can kill some grasses, so avoid using it to kill weeds on lawns with grass.

Also Read: Does Mowing Weeds Kill Them

How to Make a 3-Ingredient Homemade Weed Killer Recipe

homemade weed killer

After gathering everything you need, it’s time to make the homemade weed killer.

Here is how to make a 3-ingredient homemade weed killer:

  • Pour all the white vinegar into the bucket.
  • Add 2 cups of regular salt.
  • Pour the dawn dish soap, then stir the mixture well.
  • Let the mixture sit for a few minutes to allow the ingredients to settle together.
  • Pour your homemade weed killer into a spray bottle. You can use a funnel to make sure you don’t pour any out.
  • Spray a generous amount of the weed killer on the weeds, ensuring you cover the whole plant and also the soil to kill the weed roots.
  • Let the weed killer act overnight, then pull out the dead weeds.

Try this 3-ingredient recipe if you are looking for a natural, effective weed killer.

Read More: How To Keep Weeds Out Of Mulch

How To Use Homemade Weed Killer

This easy homemade weed-killer recipe can be used to kill any plant because it is nonselective. When it comes to application, you must pick the day wisely.

For instance, avoid rainy days because the rainwater will just wash it away, rendering it useless.

Pick a sunny, dry day to apply the weed killer mixture, and make sure you spray all the weed surfaces thoroughly.

However, do not apply too much of the solution because compound or chemical plant killers in large doses will be toxic to other living organisms.

For example, vinegar and salt solution is harmful to tiny mammals and can also damage the soil microbiome; therefore, you should be careful not to spill it on the ground.

If you apply the weed killer to a sizeable solid weed patch, consider adopting a watering and soil-building strategy once the weeds are eliminated to restore the health of the soil.

If you have any leftover homemade weed killer, put it in a plastic container, cap it tightly, seal it, and keep it in a dark, cool spot for future use.

Storing this DIY weed killer is pretty easy, but keep it away from your kids and pets.

How Long Does It Take for Homemade Weed Killer to Work?

The results of a homemade weed killer can be seen within a short period, depending on the season and the weeds, but sometimes, the weed killer may take a bit longer to act.

You will see the outcome in a few hours if you apply it on a sunny, warm day; you will see the weeds starting to wither and turn brown.

The downside is, unlike chemicals, homemade weed killers are not too effective on the root system, so you will need to do multiple treatments to keep weeds out of your garden.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does vinegar and Epsom salt weed killer work?

Yes, Vinegar and Epsom salt can kill weeds since the combination creates a highly effective weed killer. The Epsom salt, which is essentially magnesium sulfate, prevents plants from absorbing other ingredients, such as calcium, and the deprivation of these nutrients will make the plants die and wither.

On the other hand, vinegar absorbs the water in the weed plants depriving them of the much-needed moisture. To make this weed killer, use a spray bottle to mix equal portions of white vinegar and Epsom salt.

Can You Use Epsom Salt in Homemade Weed Killer?

Yes, you can use Epsom salt to make homemade weed killer. For instance, you could mix it with vinegar to create effective weed control, but the solution is also destructive to other plants it comes into contact with.

Therefore, Epsom salt can be harmful if misused. Make sure you attentively apply a homemade weed killer made of Epsom salt to ensure it does not touch your plants.

Final Remarks

You can use plenty of things around your house to make an easy natural weed killer with white vinegar, dawn and salt recipe, including rubbing alcohol, hot water, baking soda, borax, and even vodka.

However, vinegar is a common and highly effective ingredient in homemade weed killers.

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1 thought on “How to Make a Homemade Weed Killer (Safe for Pets)”

  1. I made the vinegar, salt and Dawn solution yesterday, sprayed it on some weeds, and they were practically dead by the end of the day. I am happy.


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