Kill Off Crabgrass The Natural Way With This Household Essential

Having a perfectly green lawn is not an easy task and involves a lot of seemingly small decisions that can have a big impact, from figuring out what time of day to water to deciding when is the best time to fertilize. However, out of all the frustrations that come with lawn care, any longtime homeowner will tell you that battling weeds can be the most frustrating. While there are some weeds you may want to keep in your yard because they are beneficial, crabgrass is not one of them. Luckily, if you don't want to spend precious hours of your weekend pulling up crabgrass tendrils, there's an easier solution that is both natural and convenient — baking soda.

In fact, baking soda is a great tool to use against weeds — and crabgrass specifically — because it contains sodium which is toxic to plants. While sodium by itself is toxic to all plants in high enough quantities, the benefit of baking soda is that it is not as toxic to certain varieties of turfgrass (like Bermuda and St. Augustine) while still being extremely effective on crabgrass.

How to use baking soda to kill crabgrass

The best way to get rid of crabgrass with baking soda is to spot-treat your yard. To do this, first, get the crabgrass slightly wet so that the baking soda is better able to stick to the plant. Then, simply sprinkle a light coating of baking soda on top of the crabgrass you'd like to kill. You should see the baking soda quickly start to affect the plant by turning it first black and then yellow. You may have to apply the baking soda a few times before it fully kills the weed down to the roots.

If your lawn is made up of a type of grass that is not resistant to baking soda, you will want to be careful not to get it on your lawn as it will cause damage. One way to help protect your grass while treating the crabgrass weeds is to cover the turfgrass near any crabgrass before applying the baking soda. You can do this with anything, from dead leaves to newspapers. 

Other baking soda additions to help tackle crabgrass

You can also add other weed-killing ingredients to make your baking soda mixture more effective. One Redditor on the lawncare forum of the website successfully treated their crabgrass with a mixture of "one cup baking soda, one cup flour, and two tablespoons of cinnamon." While the purpose of the flour may just be to help the baking soda spread further, sprinkling a little cinnamon on your lawn has many benefits including killing unwanted mold and fungus.

For more accuracy with the application of baking soda, you can opt to make it into a liquid by mixing it in water and then putting it into a spray bottle. This way you can easily aim for and treat the areas where crabgrass is growing and avoid other plants you don't wish to harm. The recommended mixture for this application method is two to three tablespoons of baking soda per quart of water. You can also take it a step further by mixing the baking soda with vinegar or lemon juice instead of water to help burn the leaves of the plant and kill it faster.