There’s nothing quite like a pristine expanse of green grass to walk across, relax on and to make the rest of your flower beds and borders shine brightly all year round.
However, the perfect lawn can easily be blighted by the appearance of nuisance weeds popping their heads up and creating unsightly patches of raggedy-looking flowers and foliage where there ought to be healthy green grass.
Not only are weeds particularly unattractive, but they can also have a detrimental effect on your lawn itself, stealing minerals and nutrients from the soil and preventing your grass from growing strongly.
So, to get the perfect lawn and to keep it in a healthy condition it’s absolutely essential to remove these weeds as soon as they occur, and to prevent them from growing back next year too.
But when it comes to finding a weed killer that will only target the weeds in your lawn and not cause any damage to your grass, things can become a little bit confusing. But fear not, there are some super effective herbicides that will leave your grass looking green and lush, and remove those troublesome weeds.
Below, we’ve compiled a list of five of the best weed killers for lawns that are guaranteed to leave you with nothing but a radiant patch of green, along with a useful buying guide that’s packed full of hints and tips on what to look out for when you're purchasing a lawn weed killer.
Grab yourself a seat, relax and pretty soon you’ll be equipped with everything you need to know about getting rid of those pesky weeds without causing any damage to your lawn in the process.
Looking to get rid of your lawn weeds as fast as possible?
OUR TOP PICK
Capable of killing dandelions, clover and other broadleaf weeds right to the root, Ortho ‘Weed B Gon’ is guaranteed to clear any unwanted growth from your lawn and leave it looking lush and green.
Ideal for use on large and small areas alike, this lawn weed killer arrives at your door as a ready-mixed concentrate, which takes all of the guesswork and confusion out of finding the correct water-to-solution formula, and means that you can get on with obliterating those annoying weeds even faster.
It’s ready-to-spray design also gives you the convenience of simply attaching the bottle to a watering hose, turning on the faucet and lightly spraying across your lawn. Once applied, it’ll get straight to work and will give you visible results in just a few hours.
This weed killer is best used when the weeds are actively growing, so makes the perfect choice for lawn maintenance during the spring and summer months, and one 32oz bottle will give you coverage for up to 16,000 square feet of lawn.
If you’re dreaming of a perfect, healthy green lawn that is totally free of weeds then the Triple Action Turf Builder from Scotts could be exactly what you need. Not only does it ensure that any weeds are stopped in their tracks, but it also feeds the lawn and prevents any weeds from regrowing.
This innovative 3-in-1 formula kills a huge variety of weeds including dandelions and clover, and also prevents crabgrass and weed regrowth for up to four months after application, making it perfect if you’re looking for a low-maintenance way of keeping your lawn weed free.
Feeding the lawn at the same time as killing the weeds helps to encourage any bare patches left behind to be quickly replaced by thick, luscious grass and also helps the regrowing grass develop a strong root system that weeds will find it difficult to survive in next year.
This lawn weed killer and feed is also really easy to prepare and apply, and even gives you details of an app you can use to calculate the amount you need to use for your lawn size. Once you’ve got the correct amount figured out, simply pour it into a lawn spreader, adjust accordingly and walk it across your lawn.
Perfect for larger lawns, the Speed Zone Lawn Weed Killer from Gordon’s gives you weed control coverage up to 14,000-18,000 square feet from a single bottle, and will clear your lawn of dandelions, clover and other weeds without causing any harm to the existing grass.
Giving you visible results in just a few hours, and is effective enough to allow you to continue reseeding your lawn in just two weeks without it affecting germination.
This means that you won’t have to worry about sacrificing the quality of your lawn in favor of eradicating weeds, and can still achieve that picture-perfect lawn this summer.
It also has superior cool-weather performance and can be used on established cool and warm-season grasses alike with equal effectiveness on both. This also gives you the opportunity to apply it in both spring and fall in preparation for the growing season and prevents seed stratification during winter.
This weed killer is a liquid formula, and simply needs to be mixed with water and poured into a sprayer for quick and easy application.
This gives you the ability to target particularly troublesome weeds right at the source, as well as spraying broadly for wider coverage.
Not only does the Turflon Ester Specialty Herbicide from Monterey kill and clear nuisance weeds such as oxalis, wild violet and clover, but it has also been specially formulated to kill invasive grasses including bermudagrass and kikuyugrass without causing any damage to your existing lawn.
Designed for use on actively growing weeds, you’ll see visible results in only a few hours as it begins to work it’s way through the weed and kill it from the root.
This prevents the weed from growing back and, when applied at the correct time, takes away the weed’s ability to self-seed and cause further outbreaks.
You’ll also get an amazing amount of coverage from this lawn weed killer, and one bottle is capable of destroying any weeds or invasive grasses in an area of up to 20,000 square feet! This makes it ideal for larger gardens, or as a more economical choice for smaller lawns.
It’s also super easy to use, and only needs to be mixed with water and then applied with a garden sprayer - perfect for low-maintenance weed control.
Capable of killing up to 250 different weeds including crabgrass and yellow nutsedge, Weed Stop for Lawns from Spectracide will totally clear your lawn of nuisance weeds without causing any harm to your existing grass.
Giving you visible results in just 8 hours following application it works by killing the weed right down to the root which prevents it from regrowing and, when applied at the right time, stops the weed from spreading any seeds further across your lawn.
One bottle gives you coverage of up to 5,000 square feet which makes it ideal for larger lawns, and also makes it an economical choice for smaller gardens as you’ll be able to use it repeatedly over a long period of time.
Mixed with water in a garden sprayer it’s incredibly easy to apply to your lawn, and it has also been specially formulated to prevent rain water washing it away for up to three hours after use, so you won’t have to worry about it becoming ineffective during bad weather.
Weed killers that are designed for use with lawns aren’t only amazing at obliterating dandelions, clover and other annoying weeds, but also take all of the back-breaking work out of digging and removing weeds by hand.
However, when you’re purchasing a lawn weed killer there are some really important things you need to bear in mind when you’re shopping around.
We’ve listed some of these below, and not only will considering these points help you find the best product for your individual needs, but they will also make sure your lawn stays looking beautiful and healthy all year-round.
The first thing you need to think about is what species of weeds are infiltrating your lawn. By determining whether you’ve got dandelions, crabgrass, wild violet, clover or any of the 400+ identified species of lawn weed, you’ll be able to make sure the weed killer you’re buying will kill it off effectively.
Luckily, most weed killers have been formulated to destroy multiple weeds, and some are even designed to tackle up to 250 different species. This is a good thing to look out for if you’re not 100% certain of what it is that’s growing in your lawn, or if you have multiple species of weeds scattered throughout your grass.
Making sure that the weed killer you choose has no effect on your existing lawn is one of the most important things you need to be aware of. Some weed killers are so potent that they won’t only kill the weeds themselves, but they’ll totally destroy the grass surrounding it.
All of the weed killers we’ve chosen above have been specially designed for use on weeds that grow in lawns, but won’t have any effect on the lawn itself.
If you’re ever unsure about whether your weed killer is suitable for use on grass or not, do not hesitate to contact the company and find out. Repairing a damaged lawn can take years of hard work and maintenance, so it’s not worth running the risk and you could potentially cause irreparable damage to your existing lawn.
Now you’ve figured out which species of weed it is you’re dealing with, and you’re 100% sure that your chosen weed killer is safe to use on your lawn, it’s time to look at exactly how the weed killer works.
Almost all weed killers available today are designed to penetrate the leaves of the weed and work it’s way through the plant until it reaches the roots, whereupon it continues working until the weed is absolutely dead.
This is a favored method amongst many gardeners, as it prevents the weeds from growing back ever again, as a plant that has a dead root system is unable to produce any life at all.
One thing that many people overlook when it comes to weeds though, is that they tend to self-seed all over the place. This means that even if you’ve removed the weed from the root, you may have been too late in doing so and next year’s seeds are already in place.
With that in mind, it’s also a good idea to look for a lawn weed killer that helps to prevent further outbreaks as well as kills any existing weeds. This is achieved by creating a barrier between the soil and the grass that suffocates any seeds and stops them from germinating.
By using this preventative measure you’ll also be saving yourself time and energy next year as well, and you’ll notice that there are significantly less weeds dotted around and ruining the flawless appearance of your lawn.
You’ll also need to spend some time looking out how easy preparing the weed killer is going to be, and working out the correct calculations for your space can have a real impact on it’s effectiveness. Mix it too strong and you could cause damage to your lawn. Mix it too weakly and it’ll have almost no effect on your weeds at all.
Luckily, this uncertainty can be eased in a couple of ways. The first option is to purchase a lawn weed killer that is already prepared for you, so you don’t have to worry about mixing anything together and it can simply be applied straight to the lawn from the bottle.
If, however, you’re choosing a weed killer that does require mixing with water or scattering across a lawn, make sure that the calculation instructions are implicit. More often than not, these are found on the packaging itself, however some brands have gone the extra mile and give you details of an app you can use to make sure that you’re using the perfect amount.
Weed killers tend to either come as liquids or as seed-like granules, and each of these has it’s own method of application.
Arguably, the easiest weed killers to apply to your lawn are the liquid variety. This is because they can be mixed with water in a garden sprayer and simply sprayed across the lawn, which also gives you the ability to target weeds directly or to cast broadly for wider coverage.
Weed killers that come as granules can be scattered around a lawn by hand, however it’s often easier to pour the desired amount into a seed spreader and then walk it across your lawn. This gives you a better amount of coverage, and you can also make sure that it’s made contact with the ground as you tread it in.
Some weed killers also come readily-formulated in a bottle that simply attaches to a hose pipe. This is probably the easiest option by far, as not only does it take away the need to calculate amounts, but also means you don’t have to go digging in your shed for your garden sprayer or seed-spreader.
It’s also important that you get a weed killer that is going to provide you with enough coverage for the size of your lawn. The last thing you need is to run out of it when you’re partway through the job, leaving a portion of your lawn treated and the other half still covered with weeds!
The coverage size varies from product to product, however most weed killers for lawns will give you somewhere between 10,000-20,000 square feet from a single application. This makes them perfect for tackling weeds on larger lawns, but also makes an economical choice for smaller gardens since you’ll be able to use it time and time again.
So, before you make your purchase, head out into your garden with a tape measure and figure out exactly how much weed killer you’re going to need in order to get your lawn looking gorgeous and weed free.
Whilst weed killers aren’t particularly expensive, it’s always a good idea to see what other features you can get for your money and you might be surprised to learn that some weed killers for lawns have thought about things you might otherwise overlook.
One of these things is feed. Killing weeds is only half the battle, and in order for your grass to grow strong and healthy it needs to be fed regularly, especially during the summer months.
A weed killer that doesn’t only kill weeds but feeds the grass at the same time will encourage your existing grass to grow into any bare patches left behind by weed removal, and will also help your lawn grow a strong root system that any weed seeds will have difficulty germinating and growing in.
Another really useful feature to look out for is rain-proofing. This is a slightly more confusing one to get your head around, but it essentially means that if it does rain shortly after you’ve applied your weed killer it won’t wash away or become overly diluted, which gives it time to work effectively without being affected by adverse weather.
Dandelions are particularly tricky weeds to remove from a lawn as they have a really long tap root that buries itself deep into the ground, and even a little piece of this root left behind in the soil can grow another plant.
The best way to get rid of dandelion weeds is to use a weed killer that is designed to kill the plant from the root, as this will ensure it can never grow back.