Weeds. The Plant We All Love to Hate.
After all we spend much more time than we intended just weeding our garden patch or our carefully planned landscape just to find that weeds are stubborn, prolific growers. We can douse them with a natural herbicide (not Roundup) just to discover that 2 weeks later they are making a resurgence with a vengeance. Killing weeds is not a “one stop ‘sop’!” It takes diligence and dedication but the result will be well worth it and a hearty self-congratulations.
Some natural herbicides are all kinds of vinegar: white, malt, distilled and apple cider, will kill weeds permanently. You can buy a small hand sprayer inexpensively (99 cent store) or for larger jobs buy a tank sprayer at your local garden store ie: Home Depot or Lowe’s.
What Are the Benefits of Weeds in My Garden?
Weeds can also serve purposes that are largely not considered or even known and they are actually not all bad. In a natural setting, weeds don’t exist in the way we see them. Weeds in fact play a significant role in the balance of a natural plant environment.
Nutritional Benefits of Weeds
(Well, Some Weeds)
For instance, many weeds are edible. Now I’m not suggesting that when you extract weeds from the ground you should cut it up and throw it in a hot pan of olive oil or bake a dandelion pie but there are specific weeds that would qualify as lunch. Dandelions, Salsify, Purslance and Watercrest are a few and are actually nutritious – who would have guessed?
Dandelions for lunch?
but they are actually edible!
Benefits of Weeds on Soil
Weeds also have a beneficial effect on soil, appearing in depleted ecosystems when soil standards are out of proportion, in which case weeds have the capability to regenerate damaged ecosystems. Weeds also stabilize soil to help prevent landslides.
Additionally, weeds also assist in identifying soil conditions such as: 1)very moist soil 2) compacted soil 3) and alkaline soil.
Benefits of Weeds on the Environment
Another important benefit of weeds is that they attract beneficial insects such as pollinators and insects that help plants survive by deterring the seemingly ever present pest. The beneficial insects attract birds helping to further diversify the environment and weeds can be considered the precursor to healthy woodlands.
Hopefully what we have discovered is that weeds serve not only as a big pain in our backs but can also play a very important role in our natural environment.
“Remember plants are living organisms and we should treat them with respect.”
By Peter Martin
Peter Martin started his own business in Studio City specializing in interior plantscaping and exterior landscaping. You can see many of his landscape designs at apartment buildings and commercial real estate all around Los Angeles, as well as homes to the stars! He was also owner of Martin Iron Design where he manufactured and designed wrought iron furniture, lighting and accessories for architects and designers. Peter resides in North Hollywood, CA with his wife Susan and son Nick. Peter is a graduate of Cal State Northridge.
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