It’s a house-proud homeowner’s worst nightmare – weeds taking over the spaces between your beautifully laid pavers. Your new pavers look stunning, your outdoor area is now beautiful and functional – but over time it starts to look less attractive and more messy and unkempt as the weeds move in. It’s enough to make anyone want to tear their hair out – or at least tear the weeds out … if only it was that easy to remove them. The best strategy is to prevent the weeds from getting a foothold in the first place. Here’s how you can counter those weedy pests.
How do weeds get in between pavers
Your paved area may be a long way away from any plant material, but weeds still seem to appear, and you’re probably wondering how this is happening.
A paved area naturally has lines between each paver tile, creating a weak spot for weeds to penetrate. Those crevices can harbour some stubborn weed infestations when weed seeds are carried in on the wind or dropped by birds. If you have weeds in your garden or neighbourhood, chances are they’ll end up in your paved area – unfortunately. But while you can’t stop weed seeds from spreading around, you can still protect your paved area from their effects.
Preventing weed growth before you install pavers
The best way to prevent weed growth is before you install your pavers. If you’re laying a new paved area, get it correct right from the start any you’ll have far fewer problems with weeds in the future.
When laying the pavers, correct installation will go a long way towards preventing the establishment of weeds. You need to ensure the bedding sand is tightly packed to create a level foundation that won’t move apart, and properly install paver edging. Once the pavers have been settled into position, make sure you pack the crevices with additional sand to help prevent weeds taking hold.
Before you even get to the pavers though, you need to ensure proper drainage for your paved area, so that water doesn’t pool and stagnate between paving stones. Still water creates an ideal environment for weeds to germinate and grow. Ideally your paved area should be slightly sloped away from the house to allow water to escape.
Preventing weed growth if your pavers are already installed
While weeds can be stubborn, persistent and opportunistic, luckily there are a few strategies you can try to prevent them invading your pavers.
Of course, if weeds are already present, you need to remove them first and ensure your paved area is clean and clear. Either remove them by hand, or use an appropriate chemical treatment to get rid of stubborn or difficult to remove weeds.
Then use a little bit of prevention to stop those pesky weeds from coming back. A few simple preventative methods will leave your paved area looking clean, clear and attractive.
The journey of weed growth starts when seeds blow in or are dropped into the cracks between your pavers. However, you can make sure they don’t stay there by regularly sweeping your pavers to disrupt the establishment of the weed seeds. Sweep them out before they take root – plus, your paved area will always look fresh and clean. Win-win!
Similar to sweeping, pressure washing will quickly remove weeds that are starting to take hold in your paved area, and will prevent weed seeds from getting established. You may have to remove any stubborn weeds by hand first, then use the pressure washer to get out the roots. Just be careful not to use a jet nozzle on your paved area, as the high water pressure can sweep away the sand between the pavers as well.
Use pre-emergent weed products
You can prevent seeds that land in your pavers from germinating by applying a pre-emergent weedicide between the paver cracks. Available from any garden centre or nursery, this type of product will kill the enzymes that cause seeds to sprout.
Use natural remedies to stay on top of weeds
If you still notice weeds are establishing in your paved area, try some natural remedies to quickly remove them. White vinegar is a useful and environmentally friendly remedy for weeds between pavers, and can be sprayed between the cracks to kill the weeds. What’s more, it won’t damage or discolour the pavers either. You can also try applying baking soda, salt or boiling water to the weedy area until the weed growth stops. Many of these methods will not only remove existing weeds, but will prevent new weeds from growing back.
With a little bit of time, effort and planning, you can stay on top of weeds in your pavers and reclaim your beautiful and neat paved area from those pesky weeds. Good luck!