Monday, June 25, 2012

Safe and Natural Herbicide…and Cleaner

If you couldn’t guess from the title, I’m talking about the wonderful world of vinegar.  Vinegar kills weeds as well as any chemical spray on the market.  I am using it on my garden paths before laying down the bricks to make ongoing maintenance of the paths much easier.  It is working so well that I am planning to hit the sidewalk cracks next.  For those of you who are torn between not wanting to add unnecessary chemical runoff to our storm water systems and wanting your paths to look neat without endless hours of additional weeding, vinegar is your answer.  One word of warning:  vinegar will kill bees and other beneficial insects (as well as pests), so it still needs to be used in moderation and in small, targeted areas.  For the sake of your fellow urban farmers – please don’t go spraying all the clover!

 I know some people are hooked on that fresh, clean, unnatural smell of chemical but vinegar is a much cheaper, safer, and equally effective cleaning agent.  I’ve used it for everything from mopping floors to washing windows to removing mineral deposits left on dishes by the dishwasher.  It can be diluted and mixed with a variety of other natural ingredients to serve a multitude of purposes.  I mix in a few drops of oil of cinnamon or other essential oils because it overrides the vinegar smell.  I have a new recipe that looks like it will smell fabulous, but you will have to wait until colder weather to hear about how that works.  I must admit that the inside of my house gets a bit neglected during gardening season.

For a fairly inclusive list of uses for vinegar, check out

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