Long time readers will know that I have been doing my best to lead a more natural lifestyle. This includes trying to eliminate the use of chemicals inside our home and out. I have found vinegar to be a very effective weed killer. But there are some downsides. Vinegar is a fast acting weed killer that leaves brown patches after doing it’s job. These have to be patched with new grass. This process can become expensive and time consuming. Honestly as much as I have tried to keep up with weed killing duties this year our lawn has been taken over by them in areas. There are several reasons for this. It’s not easy to try and do the right thing by growing a natural lawn. We also have a few neighbors who are making no effort with their lawns. This has the undesired effect of spreading weeds to others. Especially those of us who aren’t using poisonous chemicals to kill unwanted growth.
During house construction across the street a good portion of our lawn was dug up to install water service to the new home. This left an area needing patched. We also obtained some fill dirt from that construction site. The area previously was nothing but a field of weeds. So I’d imagine the donated dirt wasn’t exactly weed free when we got it. When you are trying to do things naturally it’s more work in most cases. With everything already mentioned add fighting a Japanese beetle infestation. These creatures don’t exactly help your yard or landscaping look it’s best.
Trying to do it naturally is a learning process. There is definitely a learning curve. I’m still very much trying to find the balance between my neighbors expectations of what lawns should like and wanting to take a more green approach to lawn care. I’ve mentioned many times that none of my neighbors share my enthusiasm for this approach. Like many other neighborhoods ours is a chemical waste land. With hardly anyone considering that their lawn maintenance practices could be harming the water, their children and pets.
No one wants to spend time doing things they don’t like. Most of us see lawn care as a chore not a fun hobby. I’m always looking for ways to be more efficient. Some of this may be do to laziness from time to time. But it’s mostly do to wanting to get the job done with the least amount of hassle and effort. This is why I have actively been looking for a more natural less time consuming way to weed and feed our lawn. After a quick search and some reading earlier this evening I think I may have finally found what I was looking for. Natural Corn Gluten is supposedly a great way to get a healthy lawn with no weeds.
Cheryl has been telling me she had seen a natural weed and feed product at our local Lowe’s. So even though Ace Hardware is just around the corner we headed into Springfield. This is where I came across the Concern Weed Prevention Plus 100% Natural Corn Gluten pictured above. My earlier search online didn’t really offer any brand names. So I was looking for a product that contained Corn Gluten. The article I read states you have to be careful about which product you choose. Some that claim to have Natural Corn Gluten aren’t giving you what you’re looking for.
“In recent years, we have seen an increased substitution of corn gluten feed and distillers grain for real corn gluten meal. This is often sold at feed stores or local garden stores.”
I have no way of truly knowing if the product above is the type of corn gluten I need to get the job done. I’m assuming that I will only be able to determine that after seeing results. Once again we have an industry that is preying on consumers desire to lead a healthier lifestyle. Marketing has made it close to impossible to tell who is being honest with their product labeling and offerings. The website URL on the package leads you to a website that has no information on the Concern Weed Prevention Plus product. But the company has another website that does contain product information. Unfortunately there is no link to the proper site on the listed website on the packaging. The Woodstream Corporation is listed as a corn gluten meal licensee on the Iowa State University page listing these companies. So I would assume I have purchased a brand I should be able to trust.
Applying the product was simple. Just cut open the bottom of the package and then shake the contents onto the lawn. The packaging is setup to make this process painless.
“Proper timing of the application is critical for good weed control. Apply it in late March to mid-April, at least three to five weeks before the crabgrass seeds germinate. Spread it evenly over the lawn at a rate of 20 pounds per 1,000 square feet and water it lightly into the soil. After watering, let the soil dry out somewhat so that the sprouted weed seedlings dry up and die. CGM can also be applied in mid-August to control late-season annual weeds.”
If this product works as advertised. I’ll once again be wondering why people continue to use poisonous products over more natural options. I still don’t understand why people refuse to accept vinegar as the effective weed and ant killing product that it is. No matter how many times I have shown people the results they still use the more harmful chemicals. Which seems even more silly to me when looking at cost. You get more for your money with vinegar.
“When used as directed, Weed Prevention Plus will not harm beneficial insects, soil organisms, pond, or stream life. There’s no waiting, warnings, or worries. Safe for Children and Pets Weed Prevention Plus is composed of 100% granulated corn gluten meal. Children and pets can play on the lawn immediately after application.”
CGM Licensees This list shows the companies licensed to sell corn gluten meal as of August 5, 2009