Best Lawn Weed Killer: How to Kill the Weeds But Not the Grass

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Lawn weeds aren’t only an eyesore, but they also steal vital nutrients from the soil. Nutrients that should be there to benefit the grass.

Pulling stubborn weeds like Dandelions can be difficult as the roots can break, leaving them to grow back later on.

For many lawn owners, it’s just easier to apply a weedkiller, especially if the lawn is riddled with weeds. But you need to be very careful when choosing a weed killer for your lawn.

You want to kill weeds, not grass. Use the wrong one or the wrong dose and you could end up with a dry, brown, dead lawn!

In this buying guide, I’ll tell you;

  • What weed killers are safe for grass
  • How to make sure you buy the right type of weed killer
  • How to use different weed killers together for best results, and
  • When and why weed killers don’t work.

A quick comparison

Scotts Weedol: Weed Killer Concentrate that is Safe for Grass
Scotts Weedol: Weed Killer Concentrate that is Safe for Grass
  • Easy to Mix and Apply
  • Kills Most Broadleaf Weeds
  • It Just Works!
Price
Rating
Resolva For Lawns: Brilliant as a Secondary Weed Killer
Resolva For Lawns: Brilliant as a Secondary Weed Killer
  • Easy to Spread
  • Especially Effective Against Clover
  • Very Good Product
Price
Rating
Evergreen Complete 4-in-1: The Best Weed, Feed & Moss Killer
Evergreen Complete 4-in-1: The Best Weed, Feed & Moss Killer
  • All in One Feed, Weed & Moss Killer
  • Easy to Spread
  • Good For Weed Control
Price
Rating

The Best Lawn Weed Killer with Reviews

Now use know which I think are the best weed killers, let’s have a closer look at them.

Using my experience I’ve compared price and effectiveness to bring you three of the best mainstream selective weed killers for home use.

1. Weedol Weedkiller for Lawns

Weedol Weedkiller for Lawns
  • Kills weeds not lawns
  • Kills dandelions, daisies and clover
  • No Glyphosate
  • Apply through a sprayer or watering can
  • Covers up to 165m2

Formally known as Verdone, Weedol Lawn Weedkiller is a fantastic product for home use.

Because Weedol doesn’t contain Glyphosate, it is safe to use on lawns. Instead, it’s active ingredients are;

  • Fluroxypyr
  • Clopyralid, and
  • MCPA

It works by stimulating the weeds’ growth hormone and causing the plants’ cells to grow much faster than they can sustain. As a result, you may notice the weeds growing fairly quickly. This is meant to happen and the plant’s cells will collapse and the weed will soon die.

However, don’t expect them to die within 24 hours as other weedkillers claim. It can take a week or so to see results. However, this is due to the fact that it doesn’t contain Glyphosate.

Don’t be tempted to mix a stronger concentrate thinking that’ll kill the weeds quicker, it won’t. Instead, you’ll risk killing the grass too. If you mix it as per the instructions on the box you’ll have no issues.

In my opinion, Scott’s Weedol is one of the best weed killers for lawns.

I always have a bottle of concentrate and spot spray in the shed.

That’s said, they’re not the only bottles I keep…


2. Resolva Lawn Weed Killer

Resolva Lawn Weed Killer
  • Contains Mecoprop-P and Dicamba
  • Will treat a 40 m2 area
  • Adjustable spray or jet trigger head allows for wide large area or targeted application

Resolva Lawn Weedkiller is another excellent product and is ideal for use alongside Weedol.

The active ingredients in Resolva are different from those in Weedol. It contains;

  • Mecoprop-P and
  • Dicamba

Ordinarily, you should only spray the lawn with a concentrated weed killer once a year. But because the active ingredients in Resolva are different from Weedol, it means you can use each of them once per year which gives you two treatments.

It also means you can use this weedkiller to get on top of any weeds that Weedol might not have killed the first time around.

If I could only buy one weedkiller, I’d choose Weedol.

That said, because Resolva can be used alongside Weedol, it gives me double the chances of ridding my lawn of weeds. As such, I always have a bottle of concentrate and spot spray next to my Weedol.


3. Evergreen Complete 4 in 1 Granular Weed Killer for Grass

Evergreen Complete 4 in 1 Granular Weed Killer for Grass
  • Kills weeds and moss while creating a thicker, greener and healthier lawn
  • Will cover 200m2
  • Use from April to September
  • Excellent value for money

While it’s more of an all in one lawn feed, weed and moss killer, Evergreens’ 4-in-1 is a solid product for keeping on top of the weeds in your lawn.

It’s a granular product you can spread over your lawn either by hand or with a spreader.

The active weed-killing ingredients are:

  • MCPA and
  • Mecoprop-P

These are combined with Nitrogen and Potassium which aids the growth of grass. However, they will also cause the weeds to grow fairly quickly. This is nothing to worry about as they will twist up and die. Again though, it’s not a 24 process, it’ll take a few days.

It’s important to note, however,  that if you have a weed problem Evergreen 4-in-1 isn’t going to fix it. You’ll need to get on top of them first by using a dedicated weed killer like the other in this article.

Evergreen is more designed for keeping an already relatively weed-free lawn, free of new invaders. So use it as a method of weed control, not the cure to a problem.

You also need to be aware that as this product also controls moss, it contains iron which can stain pathways so be careful when applying.

When it comes to applying it, be very careful not to overdo it. The combination of high nitrogen, iron sulphate and weed killing chemicals can scorch your lawn if you’re too heavy-handed with the application. It much better to apply a little less than too much.

Apart from that, Evergreen 4-in-1 is very highly rated. It does a good job of controlling weeds, moss and thickening the grass.


Weed Killer For Grass vs. Regular Weed Killers

In the introduction to this article, I said that you need to be very careful when choosing a weed killer for your lawn.

Choose the wrong type and you’ll not only kill the weeds, but you’ll also kill the grass.

So what kind of weedkiller should you use?

Use a Selective Weedkiller

A weed killer for grass is also known as a ‘selective weed killer’. Selective weed killers lack a key ingredient that most other weed killers don’t.

That ingredient is Glyphosate.

Glyphosate is the active ingredient which makes a weedkiller non-selective, meaning it will kill any (or most) green plants that it touches. Some in as little as 24 hours.

Selective weedkillers contain different active ingredients. They are capable of killing a wide range of broadleaf weeds, including; Plantains, Pearlwort, Daisies, Yarrow, Chickweed, Sorrel, Thistles and others, without harming turfgrass.

If used properly!

Even selective weedkillers can damage grass if used improperly so always read the instructions!

How to Know You’re Buying Lawn Weedkiller Instead of a Non-Selective Type

So now you know you need a selective weedkiller to kill weeds without damaging your lawn. But how do you know a particular weed killer is safe to use on your lawn?

Well, the answer is dead simple. It’ll say so on the packaging.

This might sound blatantly obvious but websites like Amazon are awash with negative product reviews complaining that the weedkiller they used killed their grass when in actual fact, they bought the wrong product.

So if you need a weedkiller for your lawn, make sure it says it’s made for lawns on the packaging.

Or, just choose one of the products on this page.

Which is the Best Lawn Weed Killer, Liquid or Granular?

types of weed killer

Selective weed killers come in both liquid and granular versions, so which is best?

Liquid Weedkillers

Liquid weed killers are the most common and they also offer more flexibility in terms of how you can apply them.

You can buy them in two ways;

Weedkiller Concentrate

These are made to be diluted in water and applied via a watering can or knapsack sprayer.

They’re best for treating the whole lawn, either in the spring or autumn. They’re ideal if your lawn has quite a few weeds inhabiting it.

Most weedkiller concentrates can only be applied once a year. However, different brands have different active ingredients which means you can spray your lawn twice a year, each time with a different brand.

Spot Spray Weed Killers

Spot spray weedkillers don’t need mixing.

They come ready to use in a spray bottle and are perfect for blasting individual weeds. Ideal if you only have one or two in your lawn.

Also, because you don’t typically apply these to your whole lawn, you can use them whenever you need to.

Granular Weed Killers

There are very few granular weed killers on the market.

They typically come as part of a ready to use lawn feed and weed type of product but rarely as a stand-alone weedkiller.

If you don’t have many weeds in your lawn and you prefer feed and weed products instead of applying a separate fertiliser and weedkiller, then, by all means, use one.

However, if your lawn is currently inhabited by lots of weeds, a feed and weed probably won’t help.

Use a concentrate instead.

How to Use Weedol and Resolva Together For Best Results

Ordinarily, you should only apply a concentrated weed killer to your lawn once a year, either in the spring or in the autumn.

However, because Weedol and Resolva have different active ingredients, it’s perfectly safe to give your lawn one application of each once a year. This means you can treat your lawn twice a year.

Using Weedol and Resolva Concentrates

best weed killer for grassIn the spring, when the weeds are actively growing I’ll treat a lawn with Weedol lawn weed killer concentrate.

Then, once autumn rolls around I’ll treat the lawn again but this time I’ll use Resolva concentrate.

This doubles the chances of killing all the weeds in my lawn.

Using Weedol and Resolva Spot Spray

best lawn weed killerConcentrated weed killer takes care of my bi-annual treatments.

But what about weeds that might pop up during the growing season?

This is where the ready-made, ready to use spot spray weed killers come in very useful for weed control. I always keep a 1 litre bottle of Weedol and Resolva in the shed next to the concentrated solutions.

If and when a weed pops up, I’ll give it a blast with Weedol which normally does the trick and kills the weed. However, some weeds like Speedwell are pretty resilient and may hang around, in which case I’ll give it another blast a few days later with the Resolva.

Why and When Weed Killers Don’t Work

If you’ve spent any time looking on Amazon, B&Q or other shopping sites you might see negative reviews complaining that a particular weed killer didn’t work.

You’ll see the reviewer blaming the quality or strength of the product and comparing them to professional weedkillers like Holster or Bastion.

In actual fact, the active ingredients in professional weed killers are exactly the same as the ones you’ll find in weed killers for home use.

Yes, an amateur weedkiller concentrate might not be as strong as a professional product and that is for reasons of safety. That said, all it means is that you need more concentrate to dilute into water than you would a professional product.

For example, an amateur weed killer concentrate might take 1 part concentrate to 3 parts water to make the desired strength.

A professional weed killer concentrate might only take 1/2 part concentrate to 3 part water but the strength of the two mixtures is exactly the same.

So the mixing instructions provided by the manufacturer will give you a perfectly good weedkiller every time. But only if you mix it as per the instructions.

The Biggest Reasons For Lack of Success With Weed Killers

People fail with concentrated weed killers for one of two reasons;

  1. They mix them too strong so they kill the grass
  2. They mix them too weak so they don’t kill anything

There are several reasons why you might not dilute a concentrated weed killer properly.

Firstly, many people make a stronger mix than necessary because they believe it will kill stubborn weeds quicker. It won’t, it’ll just kill the grass too.

Secondly, (and this is the reason many people mix it too weak) many users don’t get an accurate measurement of their lawn. They completely underestimate how big their lawn is and only use enough concentrate for 30 square meters when in fact their lawn is 50 square meters.

To ensure success, always measure your lawn so you know how much concentrate you need to mix in how much water. And always dilute the concentrate as per the manufacturer’s instructions.

That way, you can’t really go wrong.

For more information on how to accurately dilute weed killer concentrate, watch this video by The Lawnsmith.

 

In Conclusion

At the end of the day, the best weed killer is the one that gets results.

If I could only choose one, it’d be Weedol concentrate but I keep the concentrated and 1 litre spot spray versions of both Weedol and Resolva in my shed and I use them regularly.

I rarely use Evergreen 4-in-1 because as a qualified groundsman I’ve always fed my lawn, killed weeds and killed and removed moss as separate treatments. It’s just the way I prefer to do things.

But if you want to save time then as an all in one feed, weed and moss killer, it’s very good.

Just make sure you follow the instructions given by the manufacturer’s so you kill the lawn weeds without damaging the grass.

About Tim Stephens

I'm a professional gardener with degrees in Horticulture & Landscape Gardening. I want to help you create the garden of your dreams. I want your garden to look like it’s maintained by a professional. As if I was there doing it all for you!

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