The growing season has begun. Professional landscapers drive their huge mowing machines like race cars on the S curves of Watkins Glen racetrack. I’ve lost a few fence corners to those roaring grass cutters over the years. Still, for me, they are a godsend. I simply don’t have time to mow every few days.

Last year, Good Neighbor Dave used a non-toxic weed killing concoction I gave him. He was quite put out because it killed part of his grass. I pointed out, since it kills weeds on contact, if you spray your grass with it, it will kill the grass too.

He then told me about driving to the store with his windows down. Dave passed a yard which was being sprayed with a chemical weed killer by one of those lawn-care companies. He said even with the windows open, the fumes made him so ill, when he got to the store, he had to sit and catch his breath.

“Did it hurt you to inhale when you applied my formula like it did theirs?”


“Did my formula kill weeds?


“I rest my case.”

So this year, my other next-door neighbor told me how our mutual landscape provider planned to eliminate weeds before he put down the mulch surrounding her bushes. He was going to attack the little monsters with a carcinogenic spray and follow it with a worse one. THEN he would lay the mulch.

By then, I was twitching. I suggested she try my sure-fire formula before resorting to poison. It’s only three ingredients and I had lots of two of them. I told her how I had purchased a gallon sprayer and for the life of me, couldn’t get it to work. I decided to use a simple spray bottle as soon as I had an empty one.

She gave me an empty spray bottle, and I gave her the two ingredients I had. Watch out weeds. The dynamic duo is out to get ya!

Here’s the formula:

1 Gallon white vinegar

2 cups Epsom salts

¼ cup (blue) Dawn dishwashing detergent.

But really, why?

I do wonder, though. Why do we spend significant amounts of money to put poison on our lawns so they have no weeds? Most weeds are green anyway and blend right in with the grass. I love watching the bunnies feast on my clover. I’m told clover has deeper roots, which may be why my lawn stands up pretty well to dry spells.

A few years ago one of the Lutheran seminaries planted vegetables where they used to plant flowers on its campus. They invited the townspeople to help themselves to the harvest. If I didn’t have a black thumb, I wonder if that would be a good idea for my front lawn.

Imagine if people spent their money on veggie seedlings instead of poison to create gardens instead of weed-free grass.  Which provides the best value for our bucks (and health) in the lawn run? (Pun intended)

Just a thought.