The Q&A Archives: Weeds in Ground Cover

Question: How can I get rid of weeds in my ground cover without damaging the ground cover plants?

Answer: It's amazing how annoyingly tenacious weeds can be! If the weeds you're dealing with are perennials that spread from runners or stolons along or below the ground (e.g., Bermuda grass or nut grass), you'll need to pull them out and mulch heavily under the ground cover with organic matter such as wood chips. You can repeatedly cut them off to keep them under control, but, unfortunately, you'll need to be very diligent because they usually pop up elsewhere. Herbicides probably won't work in your situation, because the weeds are intermixed with your plants. The herbicide won't distinguish between the plants you want vs. the plants you don't! If the weeds in your ground covers are coming up from seed, then you might want to try a pre-emergent herbicide made from corn gluten. Corn gluten produces an enzyme that kills germinating seedlings.

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