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Garden Weeding Made Easy

5 March 2016
Garden Weeding Made Easy

Garden Weeding Made Easy
By Eileen Parker

Everyone has their own weeding style. I'm certainly not the sit-in-the-garden-and-weed-all-day type.
I like to start early in the spring when the weeds are the least established and not all of them are up. I also have the most motivation in the spring.
Weeding in the morning is the coolest part of the day, and I get to say my good-mornings as my neighbors are out for their morning walks.
And, I prefer getting dirt under my nails more often, rather than going on a weeding marathon. Others may call it, "keeping up with the weeding"; I call it, "Short attention span."

Easier Weeding

Weeding in rock-hard ground is the worst. So, I thoroughly water the garden the night or morning before so the ground is softer. I don't water too soon before weeding, so my knees, hands, and bottom, don't get covered in mud.
In my college days, I waitressed. (There is a point here.) A senior waitress told me that the secret to waitressing, was to be lazy. (Never walk anywhere without carrying something.)
I have applied this brilliant maxim to weeding with joy in my heart. I call it, "The woman with other things to do weeding method."

Fight Back

I pick a chunk of garden to weed, sit down, and get every weed, as I dig around in a circle. This is especially important for creeping charlie and grasses such as crab grass, quack grass, twitch grass, or other unmentionables that I've heard my mother call them.

Creeping charlie and grasses have roots that creep under the ground, hence their breeding like rabbits. (You can tell if it's a creeping grass if they have white at the bottom of the stalks.) It's important to dig with your trowel (small garden shovel) quite deeply to get all the roots out. If weeds are picked above ground, they laugh and say, "I'll be back." If the roots are chopped up, they laugh again. So dig around the weeds to get every bit of root out.

Stop Before They Start

After I get the spring's weeds out, I'll spread on a pre-emergent weed killer. It kills weeds before they surface without killing above-ground plants (including those darned healthy weeds I missed.).

My garden is a mass of flowers, so there's little bare ground showing by mid-season. My smart neighbors put down landscape cloth, wood chips, or rooks to decorate and keep the weeds at bay.

With landscape cloth, you'll need to spread it over your garden before you plant. Cut holes in the cloth with your trowel and plant your plants. With wood chips, you simply shovel and even them out. Ditto with rocks. Except, rocks leech acid from the soil, so you'll need to add some peat moss, or occasionally, some commercial garden acid to keep your plants healthy.

I've had a nice break - back to the weeding!