This Tool Is A Secret Weapon Against Weeds (And It's Sitting In Your Garage)

Ensuring your garden is lush and healthy may be at the top of your list, but achieving this task gets trickier when weeds run rampant. Perhaps in your drive to go chemical-free or abide by local laws, you have stuck to hand-weeding the invasive growth only to end up with grazed thumbs and a sore back. You might also be eyeing dedicated (sometimes expensive) gardening equipment such as forked weeders, rotary cultivators, trenching shovels, or propane torches to kill weeds in the least harmful way possible. But rather than spending your hard-earned money, consider rummaging through your garage tools and picking out a pair of sharp pliers.

Otherwise employed for pulling out nails and wires, pliers can be used to combat weeds thanks to their sturdy jaws and ergonomic handles. By way of their slender teeth, they eliminate weeds deeply nestled between plants or encroaching on cracks in driveways and pavers — basically, all areas where larger implements feel out of depth. Plus, you don't have to worry about creating extra storage space since they're conveniently already lying in your toolbox.

Using pliers to tame weeds

Indeed, pliers are commonly used in fields to pull out sturdy-stemmed plants, even if the soils are parched dry. As for anecdotal evidence, some gardeners reported using pliers to take out baby oaks and sticky, long-rooted plants like briars. So, even young, woody weeds with extremely soft or fibrous barks can't escape it. To get the best results, use the tool after a deep soaking session or when the rain has richly saturated the soil, because wet substrates make pulling out weeds easier.

Aim the pair of pliers at the base of the undesirable plant's stem and tug it straight out of the ground along with its taproots. Feel free to throw the unwanted vegetation into your compost pile. If you have different types of pliers on hand, favor the spring-loaded, long-nosed variety. Channel-lock pliers work, too, if you're targeting particularly slippery, small seedlings, although their easy adjustability lends them well to large saplings. Remember, pliers can get jammed with dirt and debris, especially when their jaws are wider than the targeted weed stalk, so keep an eye out for soil buildup.