How to Get Rid of Dandelions

Are you wondering how to get rid of dandelions in your lawn? There are countless websites and articles on the Internet that tell you how to kill dandelions. The problem is, many of the techniques they suggest are not terribly effective, or can take quite a bit of time to actually kill dandelions.

On this website we will go over 5 ways to kill dandelions, and rate them for effectiveness. Let’s begin! (Spoiler: we rate Method #5 as the most effective dandelion method.)

Method 1: Using Boiling Water to Kill Dandelions

How it works: If you’re looking for a natural dandelion killer, boiling water scalds dandelions and can do the trick. Heat up water in a kettle or pot, then carefully and slowly pour it on to the dandelion plant. Be careful though because you could easily either A) kill other plants like your lawn or B) burn yourself either on the hot pot or with the water itself.

Effectiveness: In our experience, killing dandelions with boiling hot water isn’t the most effective, although it is a homemade dandelion killer. It may kill the weed within a few days but it takes a fair amount of water and can kill patches of your lawn too. And who wants patches of dead lawn where dandelions used to be? Is that really an improvement over the dandelions to begin with? Besides, unless you yank up the dandelion up and pour the water directly on the dandelion’s root system, there’s a very good chance the dandelion could grow back even after its current head dies. Keep reading for more effective methods of dandelion control.

Method 2: Using Horticultural Vinegar to Kill Dandelions

Horticultural Vinegar

How it works: Another way to get rid of dandelions naturally is pouring vinegar on the plants themselves. Vinegar is extremely acidic and can kill any plant or weed exposed to it. Normal household vinegar is generally not quite acidic enough to do a good job but special horticultural vinegar is more effective because it is two to four times more acidic than the normal stuff in your cupboard. Pour the vinegar on your dandelions and with a few repeated treatments, it can kill the green bits– again temporarily.

Effectiveness: Like the boiling water technique, using horticultural vinegar isn’t the most effective dandelion killer. The dandelion’s taproots, which can extend up to ten inches in length below the surface won’t be damaged by pouring vinegar on the green part above the surface so unless you manually pull the dandelion as best you can, it may grow back later. On the bright side, using horticultural vinegar as a natural dandelion killer won’t hurt you even if you spill some on yourself (which can’t be said for boiling water). Read on for ways to kill dandelions.

Want to try this method? Try getting some horticultural strength vinegar:

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Method 3: Using Herbicides or Dandelion Spray to Kill Dandelions

Broadleaf Weed Killer

How it works: Dandelions are broadleaf weeds, which means broadleaf herbicides can kill them without damaging your lawn (grass is not broadleaf). Simply spray dandelions with a broadleaf herbicide and you’ll probably see results the next day. It’s especially effective at killing dandelion weeds that creep up in cracks in cement or paths, but it can work for spot treatment in the middle of your lawn too (without killing your grass).

Effectiveness: Dandelion spray is a fairly effective way of getting rid of dandelions, and it also works on other broadleaf plants like crabgrass (read about crabgrass on Wikipedia). So, is spraying with herbicide the best way to kill dandelions? Well, it certainly works. But plenty of people have reservations about using chemicals on their lawn, whether it’s because they don’t want to harm their pets, children or themselves. If that’s a concern for you, read on for other more natural dandelion killers.

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Method 4: Using a Dandelion Remover Tool to Kill Dandelions

Dandelion picker tool

How it works: Using a dandelion tool is a great way to kill dandelions without killing grass. You simply dig out the roots with a dandelion picker tool.

Effectiveness: Pulling dandelions, taproot and all, is the number one most effective way to kill them and make sure they don’t come back in a few months or next year. Of course there are still downsides to manually pulling these weeds: it means you need to kneel down on the grass and pull them out yourself, which can be a pain in the butt. (Of course you can get outdoor kneepads, garden knee mats and gloves which make this less unpleasant.) Read on for one final really good way to kill dandelions.

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Method 5: Using a Stand-up Dandelion Extractor to Kill Dandelions

Stand-up Dandelion Removal Tool

How it works: Stand up weeders are a relatively new phenomenon and they allow you to yank dandelions up by the roots without having to bend down. They work by relying on claws that dig into the soil and grasp the plant by its taproot, letting you firmly grasp it to pull it out.

Effectiveness: Overall we would rate the dandelion extractor as the best way to get rid of dandelion weeds. Why? The dandelion tool rips out the entire dandelion weed from its roots, which can be up to 10 inches in length, to prevent them from growing back. It also doesn’t hurt your back or knees because you won’t have to bend down until it’s time to collect up dead dandelions afterward. And finally, dandelion extractors don’t rely on potentially harmful or dangerous chemicals that can be bad for you, your kids, pets, or your lawn. We would rank using a stand-up dandelion picker tool the overall best way to kill dandelions.

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Frequently asked questions about getting rid of dandelions

Is the dandelion a weed or a flower?

You saw tomato, I say to-mah-to. It depends on your point of view but most people view dandelions as a weed that can be an eyesore in the middle of your otherwise pristine lawn. Although dandelions do sport yellow flowers when they’re growing, at the end of their lifecycle they transition to round seed heads called blowballs which will help them spread to the rest of your lawn. So, are dandelions weeds? We’d say that they are. This website is meant to teach you how to get rid of dandelions.

How to get rid of dandelions?

This website is devoted to the question of how to kill dandelions. We list several natural ways to kill dandelion weeds in your lawn.

What kills dandelions but not grass?

Using a broadleaf herbicide can kill dandelions without killing your grass. The same is true for dandelion picker tools which help you uproot dandelions manually.

When do dandelions bloom?

Dandelions flourish in the spring and fall when the weather is warm enough and the days offer less than 12 hours of sunlight. In some colder regions, they may grow throughout summer as well. In warmer climates, dandelions may grow best in winter time.

How long do dandelions last?

The video above was filmed over the course of one month. By the time you notice a dandelion growing with its yellow flower, it may have a week or two until it goes to seed, replacing its flower with a round sphere of seedlings which will then blow away in the wind and create more dandelions in your lawn.

How do dandelions spread?

At the end of their lifecycles dandelion flowers turn into seed spheres called blowballs which blow away in the wind. A single dandelion can sprout almost two hundred seedlings which can create more dandelions nearby once they scatter. Dandelion seeds are more lightweight than most seedlings so they can travel quite far distances if it’s windy. Some sources even say dandelions can spread a mile or more on a particularly windy day.

What are dandelions good for? Are dandelions edible?

Raw dandelions are edible for humans: dandelions are safe to eat. In fact, their leaves contain quite a bit of vitamin A, vitamin C, and calcium. You can eat them in salads or sauté them in oil to eat them cooked (they maintain their vitamins either way). If you’re interested in trying to eat dandelions, make sure you wash the leaves and flowers thoroughly before you consume them. Read more about the edibility of dandelions on SFGate.com.

Are dandelions bad for dogs?

Dandelions are not bad for dogs. In fact they’re not even bad for humans! The dandelion plant is entirely edible, even though it might not look like it if you’re used to thinking of dandelions as weeds. They may actually function as a digestive aid for some dogs.

How to prevent dandelions?

The best way to prevent dandelions is by pulling them up by the roots, making sure the entire taproot is yanked up from the ground so it doesn’t grow back. It’s also important to pull dandelions up before they go to seed and spread more. It is especially important to make sure all of the dandelions in your lawn have been killed in fall because if you don’t get rid of them, they’ll grow back next spring (unfortunately dandelions are perennial).

Where do dandelions come from?

Dandelions come from seeds blown in the wind. A single dandelion seed can travel quite a distance in the wind, with some sources even suggesting they can travel a mile or more. If your neighbor has a ton of dandelions in their yard that are going to seed it’s quite possible they may blow into your yard and start growing in your lawn. It’s best to get rid of dandelions as soon as they sprout up. The best time to get rid of dandelions is when they have yellow flowers, before their flowers have a chance to turn into seed heads which can easily blow away in the wind, or fall apart and disperse you’re trying to pull them.

Where do dandelions grow?

Dandelions, known by the scientific name Taraxacum, are native to Eurasia and North America. There are several different types of dandelions, and some plants that look like dandelions are actually false dandelions. Most often these turn out to be Hypochaeris radicata or catsear (also known as flatweed). These are dandelion looking plants that get quite a bit taller than a normal dandelion does, growing almost 8 inches or 20cm tall. Read more about false dandelions on Wikipedia.

How do you spell dandelion?

The official correct spelling is dandelion although it’s commonly misspelled as dandellion and dandylion.

Indoor Hydroponic Herb Garden Systems & Kits

Indoor Hydroponic Herb Garden Systems & Kits

Hydroponic gardening systems provide an easy and efficient way to grow herbs and other plants indoors with minimal fuss and mess. Since these hydroponic systems use nutrient infused water to grow your herbs there’s no dirt and no mess. These kits can be set up anywhere in your home and allow you to grow fresh herbs year round. If you’re looking for an indoor hydroponic herb garden it’s hard to go wrong with any of these kits.

Many of these kits are perfectly sized for a kitchen counter or windowsill, which makes them a great option for casual gardeners looking to save money buying herbs from the grocery store. Indoor hydroponic gardening is also a great option for urban gardeners since it can be done indoors without a yard or garden bed to plant in. Since they are self-contained systems, they can be grown anywhere in the home or even in an office to add a little greenery to your cubicle. The flexibility of these small indoor hydroponic systems and their ease of use makes them perfect for hobbyists and newbie gardeners.

For this article, we rounded up the best indoor hydroponic herb garden systems that are available for complete kits. We evaluated the ease of set up and use, along with the availability of supplies, and overall price to find the best indoor hydroponic grow system for all levels of gardeners. Check out our reviews below.

Best Indoor Hydroponic Herb Garden Systems

Miracle-Gro AeroGarden Classic Herb Kit

Miracle-Gro AeroGarden Classic Herb KitMiracle-Gro’s AeroGarden was the hot product that originally kick-started indoor hydroponic gardening among the masses. Now there are many different models available in multiple color options and with cool features like wifi controls, but we are going to focus on the Classic model. This is a great entry-level model for anyone new to hydroponic gardening interested in growing herbs in their kitchen, and it’s also the most affordable Aerogarden. The unit comes with a base with a control panel, a water reservoir, and space for 6 pods. The pods are cone-shaped holders with a sponge that the seeds sprout and grow inside of. These sponges absorb the water and the nutrients in the reservoir to germinate the seeds until they grow their own roots. The pods are one-time use only, so you will need replacements at the end of each growing season.

The two big selling points for the Aerogarden is that it makes hydroponic growing simple and it has a built-in 20 watt LED lighting system. Attached to the base by a height adjustable arm, these high-performance and full spectrum lights are almost better than relying on sunlight in your windowsill. You can grow year round, anywhere in your home or office, no matter what kind of natural light is available. The lighting system makes this almost fool proof. Once you have the Aerogarden setup, the control panel will remind you to add the nutrients and automatically turn the lights on and off. The Aerogarden is the best indoor hydroponic grow system on the market right now.

This set comes with the Gourmet Herb Seed Pod Kit which includes six seed pods and enough plant nutrients for 1 season of growth. All supplies and replacement parts are easily available for order online, including generic pods and food available at lower prices. We’ve successfully used the Aerogarden to grow herbs and lettuce greens and recommend it for anyone looking to grow those indoors. They also sell pods for red heirloom cherry tomatoes, which are well reviewed on Amazon. You can also grow flowers in your Aerogarden, but we feel like that’s a waste of space when flowers are so easy to grow elsewhere.

Included Seeds: Genovese basil, curly parsley, dill, thyme, Thai basil, mint

Dimensions: 16″ wide, 11″ deep, 15″-21″ adjustable height (5.5″-12″ high growing area)


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Hydrofarm Emily’s Garden Hydroponic System

Hydrofarm Emily's Garden Hydroponic SystemIf finding natural light for your herbs isn’t an issue or you’re looking for a hydroponic planter that’s flexible for indoor or outdoor use, this hydrofarm may be what you’re looking for. It does require a little bit more “know how” and hands on maintenance than the Aerogarden, so it depends on what your needs are. We would not recomend this indoor hydroponic garden for beginners.

Available for over 25 years, the manufacturer also makes commercial hydroponic systems, so they provide a quality at home solution. These Hydrofarm hydroponic systems come with 6 individual planters to grow your herbs (or flowers or strawberries or even veggies) that rest in a 2 gallon reservoir. The pump irrigation system keeps the water aerated and the water level indicator on the side lets you know when you need to refill it. Instead of soil, this hydroponic grow kit uses a geolite growing medium that absorbs moisture and nutrients from the water and delivers it to your plants for even watering with minimal maintenance. The compact size of this system is great for growing in a sunny windowsill or small patio, and this system is great for outdoor urban gardeners as well. The large size of the pots mean you can easily growb herbs and many types of vegetables as well.

This kit comes with the full Hydrofarm setup and pump irrigation system, plus the Geolite Growing Medium and an all-purpose nutrient solution. It’s just up to you to pick out the herbs you want to grow and buy the seeds. If you find that you need extra light, you can use this hydroponic kit with any indoor grow light setup. Since this kit is such a general setup, it’s easy to buy replacement growing medium and plant nutrients online or in local garden stores.

Dimensions: Overall unit: 16″ x 24″ x 6″. Individual planters: 6″ x 6″ x 7″


EcoPro LED Indoor Hydroponics Grower Kit

EcoPro Indoor Hydroponics Grower KitIf you like the idea of the Aerogarden but don’t like the price point and what the ability to grow more pods, check out the EcoPro. Utilizing a similar design, this indoor hydroponic grow system is a fraction of the price. Its goal is to give you an easy, fool-proof way to grow an indoor hydroponic herb garden in your home. It features a base to hold the water and nutrients and 8 slots for baskets grow your chosen plants. There’s also a built-in water pump to keep your water circulating. By placing the growing sponge in the baskets and adding your seeds, you just have to fill it with water, program it and watch it grow. The top LED panel is the programmable light, which allows you to grow your herbs and vegetables in any location, under any light, even in the winter! The height of the light is adjustable so you can increase it as your seedlings grow.

This is great for gardening newbies as it comes with detailed instructions to set up the system (no tools required), “plant” your seeds, and care for your plants by maintaining the water and nutrients. Again, I would recommend this kind of set-up for urban gardeners and apartment dwellers who have limited outdoor space and no yard to grow in. The unit gives you the flexibility to grow most herbs, lettuce greens, and some vegetables while guiding you through the process. This is also a great set-up for a classroom or to teach your own children about the life cycle of plants and the benefits of growing your own food. It’s also another way to give your kids some responsibility and practice on caring for something without giving in to their demands for a puppy or a kitty.

This hydroponics kit comes with EcoPro Grow medium and nutrients to get you started. You will have to buy your own seeds to start growing, but that gives you more flexibility in selecting what herbs (or greens or vegetables or fruit or flowers) you grow. This system is flexible enough to use any type of growing pellets or foam you want to buy as a replacement and plant nutrients are plentiful to buy online or in a local garden show. The baskets and grow domes (for seed germination) appear to be reusable as long as you wash them between uses.

Dimensions: Max height 22″


Click & Grow Indoor Smart Herb Garden

Click & Grow Indoor Smart Herb GardenThis is probably the second most well-known indoor hydroponic herb garden on our list. Though, I’ll tell you a secret: it’s not actually a hydroponic garden. It actually uses a form of sub-irrigated planting to water and grow the plants. Since the only thing that it required of the user is to add water, we figure most people considering an indoor hydroponic garden would be interested in hearing about this kit.

Click & Grow started as a Kickstarter project to make a smarter and easier way to grow herbs indoors. Over 10,000 people backed it and now it’s available to buy online. Inspired by NASA’s efforts to grow plants in space, they looked for a way to minimize the amount of electricity and water used to grow plants. They used technology and science to make the process as easy as possible for the grower, but at the same time, it takes away a little bit of the flexibility you can get from other hydroponic systems. This is a great option for people who are not good at growing things or for children learning to garden for the first time.

When you receive the kit, you just follow the instructions on the box to set it up and insert the plant cartridges. Then you fill up the reservoir in the base (there is a slot in the side where you pour in the water and a float indicator that shows when it’s full) and then plug it in at the time you want the light to start in the morning. The light stays on for 14 hours and then turns off automatically. The plant capsules include their Smart Soil, which has all the nutrients your plant needs, and the seeds. Once it is set up, you just have to check the water level and refill it as needed. That’s it, the Click & Grow does the rest of the work for you. They advertise that your plants should sprout in 1-2 weeks and then be full size in 1-2 months, with 2-3 months of harvest.

In comparison to the other competitors, this system is much smaller in size. It can easily fit on a kitchen counter even in the most cramped apartments. it’s great for focused growing on just a few different types of herbs. But their proprietary design and refill cartridges give you a little bit less flexibility than some of the other hydroponic grow kits. When you decide which kit to buy, your choice between the Click & Grow and another kit should be based on whether you want the ease of use or if you want more flexibility and the ability to grow more plants with another system.

This kit comes with everything your need to set up and grow your plants, you basically just add water. After it’s first use, you will have to buy their proprietary cartridges to use it again. The linked kit comes with 3 basil cartridges and is meant for growing herbs and smaller plants. Click & Grow also sells replacement cartridges for wild strawberries, lemon balm, parsley, catnip, chili peppers, chives, marjoram, oregano, peppermint, sage, thyme, and a variety of other flowers and plants. They also have what they call an “experimental refill” that you can put your own seeds in.

Dimensions: Length 11.8″, height 11.1″, width 4.7″

Color Options: White with either white, orange, or kiwi-green cover