Eliminate pesky gravel weeds with this expert-approved boiling water technique

Pictured is a yellow wildflower daisy growing in gravel
-Credit: (Image: Getty)


Weeds have a remarkable knack for flourishing in areas with moisture and minimal sunlight. Over time, gravel can accumulate deposits from rain, dust, bird droppings, and other sources such as rubbish and fallen leaves, creating an ideal environment for weeds to grow.

Weeds that prosper in gravel or patios originate from seeds dispersed by the wind, carried by animals, or inadvertently transported on people's shoes. These seeds begin to grow and spread their roots when conditions are moist, warm, and humid.

In an exclusive interview with the Express, gardening expert and CEO of GreenPal shared his preferred methods for tackling weeds in gravel. With 22 years of experience in the landscaping business, Bryan has learned a variety of ways to combat weeds in gravelled areas, ranging from eco-friendly techniques to more aggressive approaches.

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For a natural home remedy, the expert suggests using boiling water. He said: "One method I've tested out is pouring boiling water on the weeds."

The hot water scalds the weeds, causing them to wilt and die almost instantly. Boiling water works by collapsing the plant's structure and ultimately killing it down to the root.

To use this method, start by boiling water in a kettle and carry it to the gravel area infested with weeds. Remember to wear gloves and exercise caution to avoid accidental burns.

Pour the boiling water directly over the weed from a low height to prevent splashing and ensure that as much of the water targets the weeds. Once the weeds have wilted and appear dead, use a screwdriver to loosen the roots before gently but firmly pulling the weed out.

If gardeners find that this method is not effective, Bryan suggests using a chemical weed killer - Roundup. Roundup, a glyphosate-based herbicide, is widely used because it is "effective", says Bryan.

However, he always advises caution when using it, as exposure to it increases the risk of a cancer called non-Hodgkin lymphoma by 41 per cent, according to a study from researchers in the UW Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences (DEOHS).