Tools and Stuff forum: Anyone using a Weed Dragon?

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Name: Teresa
South central KY (Zone 6b)
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bluegrassmom
May 15, 2015 9:28 PM CST
I have a large graveled sitting area and have read that this tool works well in gravel. Please lmk
what you think. I have tried Round Up but I don't like chemicals if I can find another way.
Name: Mary K
Safety Harbor, FL (Zone 10a)
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p1mkw
May 16, 2015 3:33 AM CST
I agree with you about using chemicals. I found a homemade recipes that works well and no chemicals like Round-Up. Dissolve 1 cup salt in a gallon of white vinegar; add 1 Tbsp. soap detergent. Mix well, and spray away. Just keep it off the grass, since it will kill that too. There are other homemade recipes on the internet, but I found this one to be the most effective, but like so many things, YMMV. Sorry I can't help with your original question on the weed dragon ... never used it. I have used 'Grandpa's Weeder' in the past, but I don't think it would work well on the gravel area.
Mary K.
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
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dave
May 16, 2015 6:44 AM CST

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I have a weed dragon and I love it. It does tend to scorch some things, though, so be aware of that. Sometimes you get black spots where you've used it and that can be unsightly for a while. It sure does a nice job killing the plants, though. The tough ones will come back from the root since the weed dragon only kills the above-ground part of the plant.
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
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woofie
May 16, 2015 2:59 PM CST
Oh, yes, we use one of those around the perimeter of our property (because the road dept gets testy if you ask them not to spray, but then don't control your own weeds). You do have to be careful if there's anything flammable nearby, and they work best if you attack the weeds while they're still small. Less chance of having those charred spots if you do it when they're little. We used ours to attack the out-of-control weeds in our kennel area and managed to set fire to one of the wooden planters on the other side of the fence! Oops!
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Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
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Bonehead
Jun 19, 2015 1:51 PM CST
I just bought one and am happy with it, although it does run thru propane quickly. I I will have to see how long the sidewalk cracks stay clear, so far so good,but it has only beena week or so.
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Name: Mary
Lake Stevens, WA (Zone 8a)
Near Seattle
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Pistil
Jul 9, 2015 11:13 AM CST
I have smaller handheld version I love. I have had it for about 12? years. It is just perfect for gravel. I got my sister the Weed Dragon, but really it is bigger, heavier, more trouble, and you have to drag or carry around a big propane tank, so they don't use it much. However it has a bigger flame, more like a flamethrower really. That is fine for their country home, but for my little suburban lot,and weeding around live plants I think mine is a better size. When I lived in a place with a looooong gravel driveway the Weed Dragon would have been much better.

Anyway, weeding while standing up drinking from a water bottle-what could be better? The only problem if that you might set something on fire. I set a planter on fire once. I always keep a hose handy, or a full watering can. For Bonehead-that first time takes time and propane, then just quickly go through every few weeks and it is super quick. BTW, you do not have to burn up the weeds, just flame them until they look wilted and dull. Ones that come back from roots are killed by quickly flaming the new leaves every few weeks. After a few treatments like this they just can't keep coming back.

My small handheld one you just screw in a little Coleman Fuel canister. You do have to use a flint and steel sparker to start it on fire, but I find that easy. I saw a slightly more souped up one somewhere that has a internal sparker. Anyway, mine has no moving parts or anything so it is super easy and just can't break, unless you ran over it with the car.

Here is a link to one you can get online, but I saw one recently at my local Ace Hardware store.

http://www.gardeners.com/buy/weed-dragon-mini-propane-torch-...
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
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woofie
Jul 9, 2015 11:52 AM CST
Well now isn't that just the cutest thing! I may just have to get me one of these! Thanks so much; I had no idea something like this was available. Thumbs up
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Name: Teresa
South central KY (Zone 6b)
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bluegrassmom
Jul 10, 2015 6:47 AM CST
I would love to win that 500 shopping spree! Weed dragon would be the first in the cart!
Name: Anne
Summerville, SC (Zone 8a)
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Xeramtheum
Jul 10, 2015 8:10 AM CST
I'm thinking I'd like to get one .. Since moving to my new house I have areas that are constantly covered in weeds and I hate having to use weed killer, which doesn't really do the job very well.

The question is there a way to use this without catching leaf litter on fire?
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Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
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RickCorey
Jul 23, 2015 12:00 PM CST
Maybe - I'm guessing - water the area well 2-6-10 hours before flaming. Maybe spray intermittently for a long time, so the leaves get well soaked without needing inches and inches of water.

Most of the water will run off the weeds or evaporate over 2-10 hours. Then flame only long enough and up-high enough to "steam" the weeds without drying out the leaves underneath.

I never tried this and didn't even "see it on the Internet". Just speculating.
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
Charter ATP Member Garden Procrastinator Greenhouse Dragonflies Plays in the sandbox I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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woofie
Jul 23, 2015 1:52 PM CST
Interesting thoughts, Rick. I was wondering how to prevent setting my wood chip mulch on fire using something like this, and that might just do the trick.
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
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Shadegardener
Jul 23, 2015 2:15 PM CST
Holy smokes! Those Weed Dragons are pricey! I've had a Bernzomatic for several years - must have been before they got pricey. Anyway, I never immediately leave the area where I've "flamed" anything just in case something decides to smolder. I'm mainly using it on gravel paths.
Name: Anne
Summerville, SC (Zone 8a)
Be a voice - not an echo!
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Xeramtheum
Jul 23, 2015 2:22 PM CST
I found one at Lowes for only $40.00 plus a 4 pack of propane bottles for around $12.00.

http://www.lowes.com/pd_246067-13877-JT850_0__

I haven't used mine yet as I've been waiting for it to rain. I have watched a few videos and you don't need to fry the weeds til they crisp to ash .. just enough to cause them to wilt. When I do get around to using mine, I'll have my sister follow me around with the hose.
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Name: Teresa
South central KY (Zone 6b)
Consider the lilies of the field
Seller of Garden Stuff Irises Hostas Region: Kentucky Lilies Peonies
Region: United States of America Garden Photography Vegetable Grower Hummingbirder Cat Lover Heucheras
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bluegrassmom
Jul 23, 2015 5:12 PM CST
Could you that have them or plan to purchase one give a review on how you think they did? Thanks.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Jul 23, 2015 7:23 PM CST
The videos I've seen mostly show how to flame small seedlings. Just walk the flame past them, and maybe get a little steam out.

I wonder which slows a weed down more: flaming it so that the leaves and stems are quite injured, or using a scuffle hoe and chopping them flush with the soil level.

I speculate that a plant might send resources from the roots to the heat-damaged areas to try to heal them, and exhaust the root. Hopefully exhaust it MORE than growing anew stem would.

After all, plants have to have evolved efficient ways to come back from having been grazed. That happens more often than fires do! Plants might well have evolved to "give up" after a fire, and rely on seeds to re-start the population.
Name: Mary
Glendale, Arizona (Zone 9b)
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Azgarden
Sep 28, 2015 11:06 PM CST
We love our dragon! It is the small yellow hand held version. It is awesome. My husband goes out looking for any weed to scorch in our yard or the neighbor's! He just says i'm going dragoning now! It is great for those pesky weeds in between the sections in the driveway too. No more weed killers for us. Hurray!
Name: Critter (Jill)
MD (Zone 6b)
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critterologist
Oct 2, 2015 8:16 AM CST
I've got a mini version, and it kills a lot of weeds root and all, from shock maybe. Tough ones like thistles may need a second round. The directions on mine say flame until the leaves turn shiny -- you're seeing the sap/juice from disrupted cells, and that is enough to do it. :-)
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Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Shadegardener
Oct 2, 2015 8:55 AM CST
I've heard that it's fun to torch dandelion seed heads - little fireworks. Love mine - keeps chickweed under control on gravel paths. Much more satisfying than using a hoe. :)
Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
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pirl
Oct 2, 2015 10:11 AM CST
@Azgarden - we used to face weeds and maple seedlings between the bricks. Then I found vinegar and haven't had a problem since then. Every April I use a gallon - the area is approximately 40 x 12'. It seems to work for months and it's a very quick job!
Name: Mary
Glendale, Arizona (Zone 9b)
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Azgarden
Oct 2, 2015 12:33 PM CST
@pirl great idea! Thank You!

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