Garden Care

Will Vinegar Kill Nutgrass? What You Need To Know?

Commonly referred to as a nutsedge plant, nutgrass poses a danger to your grassy areas.

Compared to other types of grass, these grow more quickly, stand taller, and are a paler shade of green, all contributing to an uneven lawn. So, will vinegar kill nutgrass like others?

I will give you an exact answer and provide useful solutions to kill nutsedge naturally. Let’s keep scrolling down.

What Is Nutgrass?

will vinegar kill nutgrass

As spring arrives and our entire lawns begin to recover from repairs, one invasive species known as nutgrass may always appear.


Growing to around 30 centimeters, nutgrass is a perennial that forms colonies and looks like grass. Their roots are the principal mechanism for its spread and inspiration.

Originally from the tropical regions of Eurasia, this invasive species has spread to over 90 nations and is considered one of the “world’s worst weeds” due to the damage it does to agricultural products.

This plant’s glossy, linear leaves grow to a length of 5-20cm and are grouped in groups of three from the plant’s central base.

Each blossoming triangular stem bears clusters of seven or more slender, flattening flower spikes that bloom a vibrant red or purple color.

The flower stem is held aloft by three to six grass-like leaflets. The occurrence of flowers after a period of growth of nutsedge is not guaranteed.

A large system of fibrous roots, bulbs at the plant’s base, creeping stems (rhizomes), and tubers are created by nutgrass below ground.

In the top twelve centimeters of soil, where the network spreads out prodigiously, 95% of the tubers are found.

The species seldom produces offspring through seed and expands via these tubers, which spread laterally.

Why Is It A Problem?

Nutgrass grows poorly in chilly or moist soils despite its adaptability and prefers drier conditions. Prefers wetter environments like marshes and swamps but may survive in dry ones like roadsides and cropland.

Likely to be found in undeveloped regions, meadows, woodland margins, and urban ruins. Irrigated fields are vulnerable to species that might cause damage to the irrigation system.

Nutgrass is both allelopathic and a competitor for nutrients from the soil since it releases chemicals from its roots that may be toxic to other plants.

It’s hard to get a handle on since any damage to the roots encourages new growth. Severe consequences on agriculture in the southern United States have been observed.

Even though the species sometimes produces little dry fruits with a single seed, the viability of those seeds is poor. Tubers and rhizomes are the principal means of propagation.

The roots and fresh rhizomes are produced by the bulb-shaped tuber that develops from the newborn plant’s white, succulent rhizomes as they spread horizontally in the soil.

Human transportation, soil movement, plowing, sharing soil and crops, and other activities related to agriculture and gardening are the primary transmission vectors.

Roots, seeds, and commercial feeds may all be used for distribution.

Will Vinegar Kill Nutgrass?

organic nutsedge killer

YES, IT WILL. Many tough weeds, especially nutgrass, will be eliminated well by vinegar and soap as a natural weed killer.


If you have nutgrass in your yard or garden, vinegar will be the easiest and most discreet way to eliminate it.

You need to stick to the appropriate guidelines and maintain an abnormally high vinegar acidity level. The acidity level must be between 10% and 20%.

Here are the materials you’ll need to make a safe vinegar-based treatment for humans and animals.

  • White Vinegar
  • Spray Bottle
  • Liquid Dish Soap
  • Salt


  • Put all of the components into a spray bottle first.
  • Maintain reasonable moderation, and don’t go overboard.
  • A gallon of vinegar just needs a cup of salt. A small amount of dish soap may be added to the mixture.
  • Make sure everything is well combined by shaking it.
  • Only spray on the desired plants. Don’t let the solution contact any other vegetation.

Vinegar is safe for people to consume, but it may be detrimental to plants that you prefer not to be disturbed.

If you see nutgrass growing in your garden, you may immediately stop its spread by spraying vinegar.

Horticultural molasses is another good nonchemical option for eliminating nutgrass. Combining 3–5 pounds of this horticultural molasses and gallon of water per 100 square feet should do the trick.


Vinegar may not be effective against nutgrass or other exotic lawn grasses. Howard Garrett suggests a two-pronged strategy.

Wait for the affected area to dry before digging up the plants and spraying them with vinegar.

Notice and Tips

Using vinegar to eradicate nutgrass is an effective method, but there are precautions to take to ensure the safety of other plants and the best possible outcomes.

  • The solution should be sprayed on the pesky weeds rather than poured.
  • Maintain the appropriate pressure and nozzle settings.
  • Ensure the spray from the nozzle’s output is steady and not set to mist.
  • Be sure to get every last bit of nutgrass and spray well.
  • The very acidic components of the vinegar mixture will cause the unwanted weeds to dry up.
  • Avoid getting the solution on neighboring vegetation, as it might be harmful.

What Are Alternative Ways To Kill Nutgrass?

kill nutsedge naturally

Vinegar’s acidity may dry out the leaves and underground stem but won’t harm the roots. Nutgrass seeds, surprisingly, have a long dormancy period—nearly ten years.

This implies that vinegar will help but not completely solve the problem.

Therefore, besides using vinegar as an organic nutsedge killer, there are some alternative solutions.

Digging They Out

Nutgrass may be effectively removed by digging up the plants’ complex roots. Because of this, you can efficiently remove nutgrass at any stage of its development.

If you get rid of it while it’s young, the roots won’t go much deeper than 50 centimeters, which you can easily reach with a shovel or spade.

Using Pre-Emergent Weed Killers

How to kill nutgrass in the garden? To remove unwanted weeds, just mow the entire lawn and spray them with pre-emergent.

This will keep the nutgrass underground and guarantee that the pesticides used around your other plants are safe.

Adding shade to a yard wherein nutgrass is planted is another simple method. This perennial weed thrives in full sunlight. Its population may be limited by placing it in the shade.

But don’t let that stop you from putting other, more important plants in full sunshine elsewhere in the garden.


Using a gardening tool, you may kill nutsedge naturally without resorting to pesticides. Mulch made from chopped-up tree bark, departed straw, and grass is one such method.

Mulch comes in several forms, and each of them works well.

It is advised that the layer be maintained at 3 inches; below this depth, nutgrass seeds will germinate. Yet, keep the mulch at arm’s length from the priceless plants.

Mulch has several positive effects on soil, including preventing it from drying out and maintaining an ideal temperature even in the summer heat.

Utilizing Sugar

Considering using sugar instead of vinegar is intriguing because it might destroy nearby vegetation. However, only the top layer of nutgrass will perish; the deep roots will continue to thrive.

The fact that this approach doesn’t hurt the soil or any other plants is a huge plus, however. In addition to its role as a fertilizer, sugar cane can improve soil quality.


Will vinegar kill nutgrass? The answer is YES. Nutgrass may be killed using vinegar, but it will first eat all your plants’ veggies, fruits, and flowers.

Killing nutgrass is a necessary action to protect the progress of your garden. The best time of day to spray weeds with vinegar is a sunny day, but notice that no wind is better.

Samuel Mark

Hello I am Samuel. Samuel's Garden is a garden blog where I share my experiences in garden caring and tree growth. Hope you enjoy it!

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button