Why are weeds growing on my block paving or patio?
Regardless of what your builders told you, there is no such thing as a weed free surface.
Forget what you've been told about weed control fabric. It can help but if your paving is built, maintained and cleaned properly it's very rare to see weeds grow, except maybe the notorious Japanese knotweed and some forms of Mares tail.
If you allow muck and dirt to accumulate on your block paving it won't be long before the weeds begin to colonise it.
In the end weeds grow in or on block paving because of the laziness of householders.
Just like a car, paving requires cleaning and maintenance, do both and you should be able to prevent weeds from growing in the first place. Do only one or none of these things and you're going to have a problem.
If there are gaps in your paving stones or you have allowed dirt to accumulate on the surface, weeds will grow & thrive.
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What types of weeds grow there?
Pretty much anything from Daffodils to Daisies, you'll probably notice the same weeds come back, over and over again.
Barring the infamous Japanese Knotweed almost all other kinds of weed can be dealt with easily & quickly.
What to try first:
By far the most popular method of removing weeds from block paving is manually.
On a small area this can be completed in no time and is highly effective, all you need is a hoe or gardening knife.
Simply pull or scrape the weeds using a hoe or similar.
Make sure you get the roots, Perennials like daffodils will regrow from anything you missed!.
When removing weeds with large roots some of the sand or sealant may come away. You should replace this once you've cleaned the surface.
Partially filled or empty joints will be quickly colonised by a new set of weeds. Fill those cracks!
Homemade weed killer recipe
If your block paving or patio is quite large or overgrown and you don't have time to dig/scrape them all out there are a number of homemade treatments that may help.
They may only work temporarily but are often a cheaper alternative to weed killer.
- Undiluted vinegar in a spray bottle will kill most small weeds (read more)
- Salt is an excellent, natural herbicide that will work on most small weeds (read more)
- Once weeds are dead ensure you fill any cracks with sealant, do it right after you've killed the weeds.
- Clean any muck & debris from your block paving regularly using soapy water & a brush.
As long as you keep your paving clean and fill any cracks then it should be easy to keep the weeds away.
Try one of these 6 deadly homemade weedkiller recipes.
Preventing weeds on block paving:
Once your paving is clear and free from weeds it makes sense to keep it that way.
- Regular brushing: This disturbs the weeds before they can become established and will prevent any dirt buildup that could help them become established. A brush a day keeps the weeds at bay.
- Sealants: A good sealant will prevent weeds from settling into the cracks & joints on your block paving. Even the best sealants cannot prevent them if mud, grit and dirt are allowed to accumulate on your paving. Remember to clean!
- Weed killer: It may not be everyones favourite method but there are numerous safe formulations that are highly effective against block paving weeds.
- Cleaning: Regularly cleaning with hot or cold soapy water will prevent the build up of dirt and kill and small weeds. This simple step will save you countless hours of killing weeds each year. Clean your block paving! Avoid acid based cleaners.
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