Will Pickling Vinegar Kill Weeds?

Wondering what’s pickling vinegar and how to use it as weed killer? Read about pickling vinegar acidity, the best pickling vinegar ratio, and more. Do you know what’s pickling vinegar? Pickling vinegar can be used as an all-in-one household product!

Along with the tangy taste it adds to pickles, salads, and loads of other eatables, it’s a great product for sanitization, cleaning glass, and removing those stubborn cloth stains.

But what if we told you it could work wonders in the garden too? Even if it could, what would be the benefit of using it over traditional gardening solutions? Here’s how you can use pickling vinegar as weed killer. 

Will Pickling Vinegar Kill Weeds?

Yes, it will! Pickling vinegar is a suitable product for various gardening needs with its unique level of acidity.

Pickling vinegar acidity works wonders in taking out practically any weed if used correctly. It’s a non-artificial herbicide found and isn’t any more dangerous than what you would use on your food.

It is worthy of note, though, that pickling vinegar’s efficacy depends on weather conditions and the pickling vinegar’s acidity and ratio. If, for example, you’ve been getting a lot of rain in the area, it might not be the best time to use pickling vinegar. This is because the water from the rain would likely dilute your vinegar solution, rendering it mostly useless in the weed control process.

Visit our article on how long does pickling vinegar last for more information on how to store and keep your pickling vinegar fresh for longer.

Potential Benefits of Using Pickling Vinegar for Weed Control

Pickling Vinegar As Weed Killer

Now that you know what’s pickling vinegar, here’s how you can use it for weed control.

1. Kill Weeds

You can use pickling vinegar as weed killer, but be careful in your application process so that you do not accidentally damage your seedlings. Nevertheless, this is a healthy alternative to avoid harmful cyanide-like substances, especially if you have young ones and pets.

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2. Keep Animals at Bay

Nearly every garden worker has faced the trouble of neighborhood animals messing up their garden or excreting in their yard.

Simply attach vinegar-drenched clothes to low heights around your home. By doing so, you might be able to ward off certain animals that don’t take too kindly to the smell of vinegar.

3. Cleaning Pots 

Flower pots are a very common sight in every garden. They are easy to use, look extremely beautiful, and enhance the plant that grows in them. But like anything that has to do with dirt, they often get messy and can be a pain to clean. A vinegar washdown can eliminate dirt and restore the pot’s quality.

4. Help Plants to Bloom

A low pH soil can hinder the growth of certain types of plants. By adding pickling vinegar to your garden, you should be able to raise the pH levels and create a more conducive environment for your plants to thrive.

5. Get Rid of Ants and Insects

Ants constitute a major problem for many gardeners. You can spray equal amounts of pickling vinegar and water on their nests and frequent pathways. The acidity in pickling vinegar makes it so they cannot thrive there anymore.

6. Get Rid of Fruit Flies

Whether it’s a whole fruit farm or a small plantation, the last thing you want is to find out that you have a fruit fly infestation. The right vinegar mixture would combine one cup of water, half a cup of apple cider vinegar, a quarter cup of sugar, and one tablespoon of molasses in a container. The concoction should then be hung from your fruit trees while you wait for the bothersome flies to be captured.

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7. Keep Your Tools Spick and Span

Soaking your gardening tools in vinegar for a while could help you keep them clean. This is particularly useful, considering how hard it can sometimes be to remove dirt from gardening tools.

8. No More Mold

Mold can be deadly for the different types of plants in your garden. By adding vinegar to a chamomile brew and using this to spray any infested plants, it can be saved.

How to Use Pickling Vinegar for Weed Control

Pickling Vinegar Ratio

When using pickling vinegar for weed control, two of the most important things to keep in mind are its pH level and the pickling vinegar ratio. 

To put things in perspective, researchers discovered that pickling vinegar kills weeds in their first two weeks of life at an acidic concentration between 5 and 10%. When concentration increased from that level, vinegar achieved between 85% to 100% death rate in all development stages. 

Essentially, pickling vinegar should be able to help you get rid of young weeds. This is primarily because most vinegar bottles only have around 5% concentration. If you want something that’s noticeably more patient and can help with older weeds, you might want to go for vinegar with a higher level of concentration. 

Either way, it’s important to be careful. If you have particularly sensitive skin, you might hurt your skin by exposing it to vinegar. This is especially so when the vinegar solution is highly concentrated. As such, it’s best to protect yourself by wearing the right choice of clothing.

But, the need for protection doesn’t apply to your skin alone. If your plants are still in their very early stages, you could harm them by exposing them to significant amounts of acidic content in vinegar. It’s best to apply your solution carefully through a narrow-mouthed spray can of sorts. That way, you’re not very likely to “overdose” the plants you actually want to keep while killing weeds. You can also dilute the pickling vinegar ratio to water to reduce the concentration.

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How Much Acidity Should be in Pickling Vinegar for Weed Control?

It largely depends on the stage of weed growth. If the unwanted plants you’re trying to get rid of are still in their first few days, you should look for acidity between 5 – 8%. Otherwise, you might want to get something stronger.

Is Pickling Vinegar an Environmentally Friendly Option for Killing Grass?

Compared to other substances that are artificial and contain multiple harmful chemicals, vinegar is a more environmentally friendly option. This is largely because it is more natural. Avoid applying it excessively as you might negatively tip the pH balance in your garden’s soil. 

If that happens, it will take a while for the land to regain its previous vitality and become conducive for plants again without human intervention. But ultimately, vinegar is a fairly safer and more natural option than its chemical alternatives.

Will Pickling Vinegar Kill Weeds Summary

So, will pickling vinegar kill weeds? Well yes, but it’s vital to remember that it can also be dangerous to the plantation. The way you can regulate this is by keeping the pickling vinegar acidity in check, so you don’t harm the plants you want around you.

Besides weed control, pickling vinegar is useful for cleaning gardening tools and equipment. It’s also useful for keeping unwanted animals away and can reduce mold growth rate in your garden.

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Eve MayHew

Eve Mayhew is a stay-at-home Mum, graphic designer and wife who takes more of a relaxed and practical approach to her lifestyle. She prefers to live a more stress-free life and enjoys food and drink in moderation by counting her blessings rather than counting the calories or feeling guilty over the odd soft drink or fast food fix every now and then. (Contact Author)