IMG_5611 (2)How to Stop Weeds From Growing in Driveway and/or Sidewalk Cracks

Does your driveway and/or sidewalks look like this? This is a definite eyesore! Weeds seem to grow virtually anywhere, even poking leaves out of cracks in concrete expansion joints on driveways and sidewalks. While newly laid concrete doesn’t have such problems, settling produces cracks after several years, allowing weed seeds to gain a foothold. Ugly tufts of grass in concrete areas such as driveways and sidewalks pose a bigger problem than poor aesthetics. The grass degrades the concrete and can eventually widen small cracks.

87791820_XSHand Pulling: Although hand pulling may temporarily remove this unwanted greenery, sections of roots often remain, allowing weeds to regrow. You can use a flat-head screwdriver or a dandelion digger to scrape them out. We suggest pulling them slowly and carefully to give yourself the best shot at taking the whole root system as you pull them. Immediately spray the just-weeded cracks with a powerful commercial weed killer. The gaps you just created by pulling out the weeds and rotting out their root systems will provide the pores that are needed for the weed killer to penetrate.

Spray the problem areas about once a month during the late spring, summer and early fall to keep the problem from recurring.

Chemical, Organic Controls: To avoid regrowth after pulling weeds, spray commercially available weed killer into the cracks. If you are concerned about the effect of chemicals on the environment, a number of organic options can kill weeds. Applying table salt to the cracks will make the soil underneath chemically unbalanced, causing weeds to wither and die. Pouring boiling water on the weeds and in the cracks might also be effective. Also we have read that 1 quart of vinegar, ¼ cup of salt and 2 tablespoons of dishwashing detergent stirred together works well when sprayed onto weeds.  These efforts work best when there is no rain in the forecast for a couple of days.

Sealing The Cracks: All cracks should be sealed to prevent them from filling with water during rain. We recommend baker rod first then caulk. This will also form a seal to minimize drafts and insect infestation.