Weed control can be handled in many ways:
- A thick layer of mulch keeps light from reaching weeds, the few plants that do manage to stick their leaves into the light will be shallowly rooted and easy to pull. Organic mulches are straw, grass clippings, leaves, shredded bark and these will actually nourish the soil as they decompose. Several sheets of newspaper or cardboard can also be put down under these mulches.
- Hoeing with an oscillating headed tool or my favorite is something called a “Winged Weeder”. I prefer the Winged Weeder Jr., it has a smaller head and I can get closer to the base of the plant without worrying about chopping it off with the part of the blade that is under the soil surface. If you Google Winged Weeder you can check it out.
- Corn Gluten Meal works similar to Preen, it does not kill the weed once it has sprouted, but it will kill the weed seeds. It does not discriminate between weed seeds and seeds you may have just planted so be careful to use it only around established plants.
- Hand pulling is another method. Persistence is the key, mulch well, pull what you can, hoe where you have to and use a handy tool or two for a few minutes whenever you visit your garden.