Is It Better To Burn Weeds Than Use Chemicals?

  • By: TheWalledNursery
  • Time to read: 5 min.
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It is better to burn weeds than use chemicals. Chemical weed-killers can leak into groundwater, contaminating it. Plus, these toxins can even get on produce from your garden! However, you need to make sure you use flame weeding correctly and safely.

Overall, flame weeding is healthier than using chemicals. Burning weeds even kills the roots, so the plant can’t return. As long as you’re very careful, burning weeds is usually the better choice!

What is Flame Weeding?

Flame weeding involves burning weeds using a source of strong heat.

Most weed burners use fuel, such as propane to create a flame. If you want to use a weed burner, you need to use one properly.

The flame only needs to pass over the weeds for a moment to have an effect.

However, you’ll need to take great care not to burn the other plants in your garden! The fire will kill any plant, not just the weeds.

Is Flame Weeding Safe?

Flame weeding is a safe alternative to using weed-killer chemicals.

Although, it’s safest when you know how to use the equipment and take precautions. Before using a weed burner, make sure to review how to operate it.

Burning weeds is even safer than chemicals, so many people prefer this method.

Spraying your garden and lawn with toxins can cause chemicals to leak into the groundwater. From there, the toxins can enter the food you’re growing or other sources of water.

In short, flame weeding is safe! It’s a natural weed-killing method that doesn’t use toxic chemicals. 

When Should I Burn Weeds?

Flame weeding is most effective when the weeds are at least one and a half inches tall. The heat won’t impact them very much if they’re shorter than that.

Annual weeds can reach this height very quickly after sprouting.

Burning weeds is best when you do it early. If you let the weeds grow more than four inches, it’ll take multiple burning sessions to get rid of them.

However, burning them before they reach that point ensures they won’t return any time soon.

Overall, you’ll want to burn them when you notice they’re about an inch out of the ground.

Be careful not to burn your other plants- weeds only need a single second of heat for the burning to be successful!

How Do I Use a Flame Weeder?

Flame weeders are the tools that you use to burn weeds. They burn fuel to produce heat and flame, which you hit the weeds with.

A flame weeder should consist of a long arm connected to a fuel tank. Most people sit the tank on a cart or dolly so that they can move it around their garden easier. 

Before you use one for the first time, make sure that you read the included manual!

All flame weeders are slightly different, depending on the model and brand. You need to know how to handle the tool to avoid starting a fire.

Then, slowly pass the fire over the tops of the weeds.

The appearance of the weed should change significantly when the burning works. They won’t look glossy anymore and will appear fragile.

It’s also easy to tell if the weed is completely dead. Simply press the leaf between your fingers. You’d leave behind a thumbprint if the weed burner did its job.

If the leaf crumbles to ash, you left the fire on it for too long!

Why Should I Choose Burning Over Chemicals?

There are many reasons people choose to burn their weeds instead of using weed-killing chemicals.

Most of these reasons have to do with the ingredients in the weed killers.

Weed killers contain many harmful toxins. Some of these chemicals are even carcinogens, so you don’t want to ingest them! 

Since most weed killer products are liquid, it’s also very easy for them to seep into the earth.

There, the toxins mix with soil and groundwater, where they can make their way into your food and water.

Additionally, a weed killer isn’t necessary to kill weeds. It often only handles surface-level infestations, leaving the roots healthy to sprout again later.

Overall, it would help if you chose to burn your weeds instead of spraying them with chemicals to avoid using harsh toxins on your property.

Burning is more effective and isn’t nearly as bad for the environment.

Can Weed Burning Save You Money?

Additionally, you might even save some money by burning your weeds instead. A weed burner is a one-time purchase, but you’ll need a new bottle of weed spray every time you run out.

Propane isn’t costly, making it more cost-effective to buy and use a weed torch to deal with pesky plants.

It can also cost between $30 and $120 to use weed killers on ¼ acre of land.

A 20-pound propane tank will burn for two and a half hours, helping you get the most from it. It only costs $15 to refuel a 20-pound propane tank in most areas.

Plus, most people don’t need weed torches with that large of a tank! A 10-pound tank is suitable for most yards and small gardens.

Who Can Use a Weed Burner?

Anyone can learn to buy and use a weed burner! You don’t need to be a professional landscaper to use this tool effectively.

You will need to make sure you’re comfortable using a flame and are willing to learn how to handle it safely first.

If you’re nervous about doing it, it’s alright for you to call a professional to help.

Weed burners work well in a variety of situations. Large farms use them, but so do those with small gardens.

People even own them to remove weeds from cracks in their sidewalk, patios, and driveways.

In short, anyone who doesn’t want to use weed chemicals can use a weed burner. You can find these weed torches for sale online, although you’ll likely need to shop in-person for the propane tanks to run it.