Unwanted Grasses In Ground Cover - Knowledgebase Question

Spokane, WA
Avatar for AERTRAM
Question by AERTRAM
May 13, 2000
What can I used to eliminate existing grasses in my various ground cover gardens - vinca minor, kinnikinik and wild strawberries, I heard about a product called SWIPE, but not familiar with it?

Answer from NGA
May 13, 2000
Unfortunately, there is no herbicide that will kill plants so selectively. There are broadleafed weed killers that spare grasses, and vice versa, but it won't pick out some broadleafed species among others. You may have seen the news item in the June 97 issue that covered three new organic pest controls, one of which is 24-Hour Weed Eraser, but that kills ANY plant it touches. You may also have seen a piece about corn gluten, which produces an enzyme that inhibits seed germination, and can be used as a preemergent herbicide. If the weeds in your groundcovers are coming up from seed, then corn gluten is for you! You can get it from Gardener's Supply Co. (www.gardeners.com; ph# 800/863-1700); they call it WeedzStop. If the weeds you're dealing with are perennials that spread from runners or stolons, they you'll need to pull them out and mulch heavily under the ground cover, or clip them off to keep them under control. I'm not familiar with the product called Swipe so I can't comment on it.

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