How to get rid of nettles in the vegetable garden: ways to remove forever
Nettle overgrowth in the vegetable garden is not only a lost useful area of the land plot. The plant also complicates work, because even the slightest touch of it causes skin irritation. Nettles have to be bypassed at the very least. Fighting it with simple mowing does not work, because the weed quickly recovers and grows further.
But there are ways to eliminate nettles from the vegetable garden completely. OBOZREVATEL tells you about the proven flyhacks.
Why are nettles so tenacious?
This plant is perennial, so even in winter its roots survive in the ground to recover in spring. At the same time, the nettle's root system deepens into the soil by 30-40 centimeters and intertwines with the roots of other crops, which makes it very difficult to uproot. The weed also quickly spreads sideways and can, under favorable conditions, take over 40-50 square meters of area during the summer season
How to fight nettles in the vegetable garden
To deal with this weed, it will be best to use a combined approach and combine several methods of struggle at once. This can be both mechanical, chemical and other influences on nettles.
Grasping nettles is difficult and the effectiveness of this approach is far from 100%, but some of the plant can still be destroyed. The best time to uproot nettles is in spring, when their first young shoots are sprouting from the ground. The treated area should be covered with a material that does not let in sunlight or mulched. This will prevent the roots from sprouting again.
This method of fighting nettles should be used in the fall, after the harvest. The area where the weed is growing should be dug deep - the entire length of the nettle's root system, that is, 30-40 cm. The lower layers of the earth should remain on top, so over the winter all the roots will freeze in them, including the nettle will die. Also seeds that have managed to fall into the soil will freeze. An additional bonus - in this way, the eggs and larvae of pests that overwinter in the ground will also die.
Harrow cultivation allows you to control weeds over a large area. It should be done twice in spring. The first time - when the ground is already frozen after winter, but not yet sprouts, the second time - after the first greens have sprouted. You can also additionally harrow the soil in the fall, this will consolidate the result. These works should be carried out only when the weather is dry.
In places such as at fences or walls of buildings, where nettles like to settle, it can be replaced by other plants. For example, cereals, cosmos or lawn grass. This trick will not work in the vegetable garden.
If you pour boiling water on the ground, it should destroy the rhizomes of all plants. Therefore, such treatment is done only on weed-contaminated areas or before sowing or after harvesting. After scalding, the ground should be covered with a thick (at least 10 cm) layer of mulch.
Spraying with potassium salt
A solution of potassium salt with a concentration of 30% can destroy nettles. Spray the plant with a freshly diluted solution. This method is best suited for greenhouses, where it is difficult to weed the roots of weeds. At the same time, the solution will not harm vegetables and berries.
Before the nettles sprout in spring, it will be useful to cover the nettles with light-tight material. This can be black sheeting, pieces of old slate, linoleum, etc. This will block sunlight from reaching the roots and seeds and prevent them from germinating.
Mow nettles before they bloom. This will help to avoid the development of seeds on the plant and their spread. At the same time, the cut stems should be wrapped in foil or rows and taken out of the vegetable garden, so as not to give the plant even a chance to germinate again. You can only dispose of it in a compost pit if you are sure that no seed has formed on the nettle.
Earlier OBOZREVATEL told, what mistakes can destroy a healthy lawn.