Skip to Content

How To Kill Weeds In Driveways & Sidewalks – Without Chemicals!

Looking for a few great all-natural methods to kill stubborn weeds in your driveway, sidewalks and patio areas?

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to use harsh chemical concoctions to control weeds in the non-grassy areas around your home. Not only can herbicides be dangerous to you, your pets and the environment, they can also be quite expensive.

Luckily, there are a whole slew of natural methods to stop those pesky and persistent weeds quite well. In fact, many help control them far better than store bought herbicides. And even better, at far less cost to you!

how to kill weeds in driveways and sidewalks
With a consistent approach, you can eliminate the pesky weeds that pop up in your driveway and the other non-lawn areas of your yard – all without having to resort to harsh chemicals that can be dangerous for your pets and other wildlife.

The first key to success when taking on stubborn weeds in taking a consistent approach. Quite often, weeds develop an extensive root system. And to completely kill off the weed and keep it from coming back, it can take several applications before the roots are entirely dead – no matter what method you use!

It’s important to note, all of the methods below are non-discriminatory. In a nutshell, they will kill anything and everything they come in contact with. A few can even change the PH of the soil when used, making it hard for anything to grow in the future.

Because of this, these methods should only be used for weed control in hardscape areas. These are areas where you will not be trying to grow grass, vegetables, flowers, trees and bushes.

With that in mind, here are some of the best solutions that work wonders for all-natural weed control on driveways, patios and sidewalks.

How To Kill Weeds In Driveways & Sidewalks – Naturally!

Control Weeds With A Weed Torch

Weed torches are great for keeping brick, gravel and paver patios free and clear of weeds. Even better, they work fast, eliminating the weeds instantly by burning them up in a flash.

Weed torches work by using a fuel source (usually propane) to ignite a burner on the end of a wand. To use, simply light the torch and apply the flame to the weeds. There are a wide variety of models available to control weeds for both small and large areas.

flame torch to kill weeds
A weed torch is a great way to kill weeds on hardscapes. It is fast, effective, and burns the weeds away immediately.

Small torches use a propane or butane canister that can be easily carried around for quick use. Larger weed torches can attach quickly to a 20 pound (gas grill tank,etc.) propane tank for easy use as well. Product Link : Propane Weed Burner Torch

The larger torches are great for bigger driveways and patios. With a longer hose and bigger surface flame, they make quick work of stubborn weeds. They are also great to have on hand for lighting everything from charcoal grills to fire pits and more. Especially when you consider they eliminate the need for ever having to use lighter fluid again.

One note of caution, weed torches should only be used where there is no danger of setting fire to mulch or nearby structures. They should also never be used when conditions are extremely dry and vegetation could catch fire and spread.

For more on weed torches, check out our article: How To Use A Weed Torch To Control Weeds – Simple, Effective & Fun!

Boiling Water – How To Kill Weeds In Driveways & Sidewalks

Looking for an inexpensive yet totally effective way to control weeds on your hardscape areas? Try boiling water!

Boiling water is a great choice when trying to eliminate stubborn weeds growing through the cracks and crevices of sidewalks and driveways. The hot water easily finds its way to the plants, and burns the foliage and the roots in the process.

boiling water to control weeds
Boiling water is one of the simplest and most economical weed killers of all! Just boil a bit of water and douse your weeds.

It can be a much better option for small areas. Even better, there is no need a sprayer. To use, simply heat up a boiling pot of water and pour it over the foliage of the weeds. It is both fast and effective – and extremely inexpensive!

Salt Water – How To Kill Weeds In Driveways & Sidewalks

Another highly effective and inexpensive homemade solution can be made by mixing water with a little salt. This method works by drying out and dehydrating the weeds, leaving them unable to absorb water. It also leaves the soil unable to sprout new weed seeds in the future.

Ordinary table salt works well, and the recipe is simple and economical:

  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 cup of salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of olive oil

For best results to control weeds, heat the water to a low boil in a pan. Add in the salt and olive oil, and stir until dissolved. Let the mixture cool and then transfer to a spray bottle to apply. Apply on hot and sunny days for maximum effectiveness.

The mixture will be most effective when weeds are under the most stress. On hot and sunny days, the sun’s rays and heat already raise the stress level of plants, and the salt mixture becomes more effective than ever as the weeds try to soak it up.

Although great for driveways and patios, do not use the salt mixture on existing flowerbeds. The salt will settle in the soil over time, making it hard for anything to grow. Be careful when using on the edges of concrete paths as well as it can kill the grass nearby.

Vinegar – How To Kill Weeds In Driveways & Sidewalks

Vinegar has long been used for creating an effective all-natural weed killer. Traditional store-bought vinegar will work, but it’s lower acidity of 5% is not as effective as horticultural vinegar.

To use store bought vinegar, use at full strength and only for small areas with few weeds. For more effective control, horticultural vinegar is the way to go. Horticultural vinegar can range from 20 to 35+% acidity, and is highly effective at weed control.

You can use it at full strength to kill large or stubborn weeds. However, mixing a 30% solution of horticultural vinegar at a 1:1 ratio with water will effectively kill most weeds in driveways and on patios.

Horticultural vinegar can be hard to find in local stores, but start by asking your local farm stores. If not, you can also find it quite easily on-line. Product Link: Horticultural Vinegar

horticulutral vinegar
Horticultural vinegar is amazingly effective at controlling weeds. Not only will it kill weeds fast, it will render the soil useless to sprout new weeds.

Remember that vinegar is acidic and will burn the skin. Always be sure to wear protective clothing and goggles when applying. A pump sprayer is best for applying a thin mist to the weeds. Much as with the salt mixture, do not use vinegar around flowerbeds, gardens, or along the edges of walkways and driveways where grass is growing.

Here is to killing off the weeds in your driveway, sidewalks and patios – naturally!

Follow Our Facebook Page For Great Gardening Tips And Advice! This Is My Garden Facebook Page

This Is My Garden is a garden website created by gardeners, for gardeners. Jim and Mary Competti have been writing gardening, DIY and recipe articles and books and speaking for over 15 years from their 46 acre Ohio farm. They publish three articles every week, 52 weeks a year. Sign up today to follow via email, or follow along!