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stop weeds from growing in rocks

Stop weeds from growing in rocks

Landscaping rock creates a low-maintenance ground cover that stays put, unlike lightweight mulch, which can blow away. The rock helps smother unwanted plant growth, but some stubborn weeds find a way to thrive. Weed prevention starts before you put the rocks down and continues with regular maintenance to stop a large-scale weed invasion.

Start With a Clean Slate

A weed-free patch of ground makes the best base for a rock-covered landscape area. Inspect the area before you place landscaping rocks to identify weed problems. You have several options for getting rid of existing weeds. If you aren’t in a rush to put down the rocks, cover the area with plastic and leave it for at least six weeks of hot, sunny weather. This sun solarization method kills the weeds underneath. Digging the weeds out to remove the full roots gets rid of many unwanted plants. Throw away the weeds and roots so they don’t grow again. You can also spray a premixed, post-emergent, non-selective herbicide onto the weeds.

Create a Barrier

Despite your best prevention techniques, you may notice a few pesky weeds sneaking into your rocks. Pull the weeds as soon as you see them, but don’t leave the plucked plants in your rocks. If possible, move the rocks back from the weed so you can get its root out when you pull. A handheld weeding knife or other small weeding tool helps reach the weed roots between the rocks.

Stop weeds from growing in rocks

There are 16 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.

This article was co-authored by Lauren Kurtz and by wikiHow staff writer, Hunter Rising. Lauren Kurtz is a Naturalist and Horticultural Specialist. Lauren has worked for Aurora, Colorado managing the Water-Wise Garden at Aurora Municipal Center for the Water Conservation Department. She earned a BA in Environmental and Sustainability Studies from Western Michigan University in 2014.

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About This Article

Even through rock mulch and gravel, weeds will somehow find a way to grow. Luckily for you, these can be handled like weeds in any other part of your garden. You can spray a chemical killer, pull them by hand, or use a variety of household materials to help keep your yard free of these plant pests.

Stop weeds from growing in rocks

Commercial herbicides (plant killers). Here we’re talking about products like Roundup, which contain glyphosate. They pretty reliably knock out weeds, even seemingly invincible Bermuda grass. The disadvantage is that many people prefer organic products, especially if they plan to later grow edible plants in the area.

Seems unfair, doesn’t it? Fortunately, we have lot of ways to handle the weeds. Here are the pros and cons of a few of the more popular ones.

Like many Arizonans, you may have opted for rock landscaping so you don’t have to waste precious water on a lawn. Then a little rain shower comes, and you find a big crop of weeds popping up in your beautiful rock landscape.

MDI Rock supplies a wide range of products for all sorts of uses at competitive prices. If you’re not sure what kind of rock you need or how much, we’re happy to give you our expert advice based on 30 years of experience. We carry over 50 colors of decorative groundcover as well as rip rap, flagstone, topsoil, sand, gravel, and a huge selection of boulders.