Many times weeds appear in places that we want to keep clean of plants, such as paths, curbs, stairs, roofs, etc. Obviously we can always resort to commercial herbicides. But did you know that there is a much cheaper way to eliminate these unwanted vegetables? There is a product that we all have at home and that can help us create a homemade herbicide: Bleach.
So that you can understand the magnitude of its power, we will explain what is this substance, what is its effect on plants and how should we use it. Without a doubt, it is a good alternative if we want to eliminate some herbs and save a little money.
What is bleach?
Before explaining how to make a homemade herbicide with bleach, we will first discuss what it is and how it affects plants. Also known as bleach, bleach, limpid or chlorine, bleach is a solution of sodium hypochlorite. It is a chemical compound whose molecular formula is NaClO, since it is made up of sodium, chlorine and oxygen. It should be noted that It has a wide variety of uses in different fields: Domestic, industrial, in the hotel industry, in food and in many other services.
It must be said that bleach is very oxidizing. Upon contact with any organic matter, it dissolves and destroys it. For this reason it is such a powerful disinfectant. In addition, it is broad spectrum and is really very cheap. Of course, we must bear in mind that some metals are susceptible to bleach, so we must prevent them from coming into contact so that they do not rust. Below we will list the most common uses of this compound:
- Water disinfectant: Both for water consumption and to sanitize public bathrooms and swimming pools.
- Bleach: Removes stains from white clothes and prevents the proliferation of microorganisms on fabrics.
- Surface disinfection: It is used to disinfect floors, rags, countertops, utensils, etc.
Despite the fact that bleach has such everyday uses, we must remember it is very toxic if inhaled or ingested in certain amounts. It is not uncommon for children and even adults to get poisoned by cleaning at home. Many people are unaware that if bleach is mixed with ammonia or acidic substances, this mixture ends up releasing toxic and dangerous gases for our health. In addition, the contact of bleach with the eyes, skin or mucous membrane can cause burns, irritations and also skin cancer, if the concentration is high enough.
For this reason it is of the utmost importance that we handle bleach or products that contain it with great care and using adequate protection. We must also try to keep these compounds out of the reach of children and use them responsibly to avoid damage to the environment. The latter is very important, since Bleach in large quantities can be very harmful to ecosystems.
What happens if I put bleach on the plants?
We already know what bleach is and what it is used for. But how does it affect plants? As we have already mentioned before, this chemical compound does not only affect microorganisms, if not to any organic tissue. This also includes all vegetables. For this reason, bleach is a fairly powerful herbicide that is very cheap.
At this point, it should be clarified that the herbicidal power of bleach is not as critical as that of phytosanitary. The latter penetrate inside the plants, poisoning them from within. On the other hand, bleach has an effect similar to salfumán when used as a herbicide. Both burn vegetables on contact with them.
When applying bleach as a homemade herbicide, we can do it in two ways: By direct contact or by altering the pH of the soil. As we have already mentioned before, applying bleach on organic tissue, such as plants, burns it. But this does not mean that it reduces the vegetables to ashes, but rather that it dries them out by killing the entire treated area. Therefore, the effect is not systemic, since only the part where this chemical compound has been applied dies. In the event that the damaged area is vital for the plant, it can kill it completely.
Another way to use bleach as a home herbicide is by altering the pH of the soil. If we apply this chemical compound near the root of a vegetable, we will eliminate it completely. We can also put some bleach in areas where we do not want anything to grow. By adding a sufficient amount of bleach, we can change the pH of the soil, since it is very alkaline. In this way, the vast majority of plants will not be able to grow there for quite some time. Of course, we should only apply this method in private spaces and not on land that has ecological or productive value.
Homemade herbicide with bleach: Application mode
Now that we know the effect of this chemical compound, it’s time to find out how to make homemade herbicide with bleach. It really is very simple, because we do not have to manufacture or elaborate anything. Just pouring the concentrated bleach over the vegetables or at the foot of them is enough. In fact, it doesn’t even have to be a large amount, just enough to completely wet the plant. If what we want is to prevent vegetables from growing in unwanted areas, such as on the sidewalk or in the gaps between cobblestones, it will be enough to water the soil with a jet of bleach.
It should be noted that it will be necessary to apply this compound several times consecutively if we want to eliminate certain plants, especially if they are resistant or large. In the event that it starts to rain shortly after applying the bleach, it is very likely that the water will end up cleaning the plant, so we will have to repeat the application. If we use the bleach at dusk, it will be more effective, since the vegetables will remain wet for longer.
How to dry a tree with bleach?
With this information we can now use bleach as a homemade and cheap herbicide. However, we must always keep in mind that It is a highly toxic product both for us and for the environment. Therefore, we must handle and use it with great caution.