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What Do Herbicides Kill?

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Is any pesky weed causing trouble in your garden or farm? If yes, and if you don’t take the issue under control, it can expand quickly. The good news is, there are several solutions to remove the problem. 

The easiest method for removing weed would be to use herbicides. Your problems can disappear fast, and you won’t have to deal with them for at least some time. Now, you might be wondering what do herbicides kill and what are they exactly? 

Continue reading to learn a little about herbicides, how they can help clear away weeds and if there are other solutions.

What are Herbicides?

Simply put, herbicides are chemical solutions. They are specially developed for slowing the growth or destroying various types of unwanted plants. 

People have been using different types of herbicides since long ago, starting with sea salt to various mineral solutions. Some of these were effective but also hazardous for everybody.

Most modern-day herbicides are nontoxic to animals and humans. So, they are much in demand. Plenty of brands are available on the market so you can choose a suitable product for your needs.

However, some products can destroy non-target plants too. So, it is vital to know how to use each one.

What Do Herbicides Kill?

Also called weed killers, the solutions come in handy in different places. In farmlands, the product comes in handy before crop planting or after.

People also use it to clear land for replanting trees, railway tracks, building structures or industrial sites.  Some types are also applied to water bodies to control aquatic weeds.

How Many Types of Herbicides are There?

Experts place herbicides in two main groups. They are selective and non-selective herbicides. The most common substances present in the solutions are glyphosate, atrazine and 2,4-D, according to surveys.

Selective Herbicides: These are weed killers that target only particular types of plants. When you apply any product in this group, it will destroy only those species that you target.

Machines or choppers spray products in this category on large farms and cultivated lands. The process can be either before crop planting or after.

Non-Selective Herbicides: These agents can’t differentiate the species and kill any plant they come in contact with. They are more suitable while clearing land for erecting buildings, railway tracks, factories, etc.

Both (selective and non-selective) can either be soil or contact herbicides. The former kills roots and other parts of weeds when sprinkled from above directly to the soil. It is, however, important to apply the product at the right level of dirt. Else, it will not be very effective.

The latter destroys only the parts where it comes in contact with. So, it can kill the leaves and stems when sprinkled but not the roots. 

RM43 43 Percent Glyphosate Plus Weed Preventer What Do Herbicides Kill

There are also three more kinds of weed killers that fall into either selective or non-selective categories. These are preplant, preemergence and postemergence solutions.

You apply the first one before planting the crops or plants. The second one is for the time before the invasive plants come out from the soil. The last one is for when weeds start to appear. 

How to Use Herbicides?

  • The first rule to keep in mind is never to spray any solution on a rainy day. Look at the weather report and see that skies will remain clear for at least six hours. 
  • If it rains after six hours, keep a watch on the sprinkled area for at least two days. The site will need reapplication if it doesn’t show any results.
  • If you need the solution for a large area of cropland, the ideal method would be to spray it aerially or with a machine. 
  • You can use the same method in land needed for building a structure, a parking space or a garbage dump.
  • The method is also suitable for golf courses, forest land, and parks. 
  • For giant areas, though, there are professionals who can do the task smoothly. 
  • If you plan to use the weed killer in your lawn, flower or kitchen garden, a sprayer with a backpack set will be comfortable to use for selective products. 
  • Wear protective gear, including glasses and gloves, before starting the process.
  • When spraying in the garden, put emphasis on the weeds directly if you have flowers and veggies already growing. 
  • It will be better to put the weed killer in the garden before you sow the seeds for best results.

How to Choose the Right Herbicide?

With so many products being available on the market, choosing the right one can be tricky. You can check out some tutorials & informative videos that offer valuable tips to choose and use weed killers. 

Experts often mention three steps to select and apply solutions to get rid of weeds and unwanted plants. So, you can watch a video, keep the points in mind and follow the tips accordingly.

Here are some products that are popular among customers in no particular order;

  1. Weed B Gon from Ortho is a solution that is highly recommended for lawns. It kills weed but not plants and should be used as recommended.
  2. Ready to use, Roundup for Lawns1 is also a popular weed killer for lawns. It can kill up to two hundred and fifty weeds. If you have hard-to-kill weed like crabgrass, “Roundup for Lawns Crabgrass Destroyer” is a great option. 
  3. RM43 is also a popular product to kill weed. However, use it only areas where you don’t want any plant growth like sidewalks, parking areas, fence rows, etc.

Other Options to Herbicides

There are also some methods to destroy weed other than herbicides, but they may not be as efficient though safer. Some of these are corn gluten, essential oils, natural acids and salt & iron-based herbicides.

In recent times, another alternative has come very much into focus; Foamstream. It is a solution to control weed but without using any herbicide. Many farmers have tried it, and they have positive responses for it. You can check for more details to know more. 


Herbicides can kill weeds as well as essential plants. It is therefore very important to follow all the instructions while buying and applying. We have provided some simple facts, but it is necessary to collect more information for safety and the best results. 

Check out all the highlighted products RM43, Roundup for Lawns1, Weed B Gon Ortho and methods like Foamstream and even others to find your perfect answer to weed problem.

  • Follow tips to a T when purchasing and using any product.
  • Always apply only during dry weather/season.
  • Don’t forget to wear protective gear while working.
  • Look for other possible solutions.

Please leave a comment and additional information if any