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Revitalizing Our Lawn Part 2: Ortho Weed-B-Gon
May 19, 2004 (Updated May 20, 2004)
a Very Helpful Review
by the Epinions community
Pros:Kills weeds without damaging the grass, quick e-mail response
Cons:Chemicals may be hazardous, not all information included on label
The Bottom Line: If you need to use a targeted chemical to kill weeds in your lawn, you won't be disappointed with the performance of Weed-B-Gon.
As part of trying to make our OK lawn look great, my husband and I knew we had to get rid of the weeds. Since we had not had good results in the past with whole yard weed control we decided to attack the individual weeds. For the most part we used our Hound Dog Weed Hound, but there were some weeds that it just didnt work on, namely clover. So I purchased a bottle of Ortho Weed-B-Gon to take care of the rest of our weeds.
Recommend this product?
What You Get
Ortho Weed-B-Gon Weed Killer for Lawns Ready to Use comes in several different sizes. I bought the small 24oz bottle to give it a try, and then later purchased the 1-gallon bottle. Ortho also manufactures it in a ½ gallon size. The 24oz bottle comes with a trigger type spray similar to most household cleaners. The 1 gallon bottle comes with a spray head attached by a hose that you need to pump in order to spray.
Regardless of the size the active ingredients are the same, from the bottle:
Mecoprop-p, dimethylamine salt: 0.22%
2, 4-D, dimethylamine salt: 0.12%
Dicamba, dimethylamine salt: 0.05%
Other Ingredients: 99.61%
Ortho Weed-B-Gon kills most broadleaf weeds including dandelion, clover, chickweed, wild carrots and wild onions. It can be used on most grasses without harming the lawn, but should not be used on floratam, a variety of St. Augustinegrass.
You need to apply Ortho Weed-B-Gon when the weeds are actively growing and temperatures are below 90° F. According to the label on both bottles, 2 hours after application rain or watering will not effect its weed killing ability. But, the Ortho website says 6 hours. To be safe, I make sure that I have at least a 6 hour window of time without rain.
To apply twist the nozzle to the desired setting, either stream (concentrated spray) or spray (wider spray pattern). Aim the nozzle at the center of the weed and lightly coat the weed. It is important to keep others away while applying the spray and too keep the lawn clear until the spray has dried. Again, I try and err on the side of caution and go with a 6 hour window, although I tend to keep my daughters off the lawn until the next day.
Ortho Weed-B-Gon is intended for use on weeds in lawns only. It should not be used in vegetable gardens, flowerbeds or around shrubs. It also should not be applied directly to water. I emailed Ortho and they recommend that you wait "a day or so" before mowing the lawn after application.
It is suggested that you wear long sleeve shirts, long pants, socks, shoes and rubber gloves while applying the spray. Clothes worn during application should be laundered separately and you should wash and exposed skin with soap and water immediately.
My husband was not happy when I came home with spray weed killer. A few years ago we had tried Roundup weed killer, and while it killed the weeds, it also killed our lawn. When I explained that we could either try Weed-B-Gon or he could get down on his hands and knees to pull out the clover, he quickly changed his tune.
We were both pleasantly surprised with the results. About 24 hours after applying we started to notice some of the clover wilting. In another 2 days all of it had wilted and was yellowing. One week after applying Weed-B-Gon all of the treated clover was dead. And was easy to rake up. We did use it on a few other weeds to test it, and we had similar results. It took about a week for the treated weeds to die. We did not see any damage to the lawn, no yellowing of the grass and it is growing even in the most heavily treated areas. Ortho says that "hard-to-kill" weeds may need a repeat application in 2-3 weeks if the first application did not kill the weeds, but we did not need to do this.
I prefer the small trigger spray bottle to the pump spray on the larger bottle. I ended up filling the smaller bottle from the larger bottle to avoid having to pump. My 1 gallon bottle actually comes with 33% making it a 1.33 gallon bottle, which kills over 1300 individual weeds while the 24 oz bottle claims to have enough to kill about 200 weeds. As you might imagine, I have to stop fairly often to refill my smaller bottle. I am surprised that Ortho would try and put a number on the amount of weeds that can be killed, because obviously it depends on the size of the weeds. I have no idea how many weeds I can spray, but my first time through the 24 oz bottle I felt it was empty much too quickly, but Ive gotten over that.
I have had to go over our lawn again since the first time I used it. I missed some weeds the first time around. You do get a little bug-eyed staring at your lawn after awhile and it is easy to miss some areas.
Obviously, the most important thing is that Weed-B-Gon works without harming the grass. But one of the important features to me is that you can plant grass as soon as the weeds die. With some of the other targeted weed killing products I looked at you have to wait up to 4 weeks to replant grass. During that time, if you existing lawn has not grown to fill in the empty spaces, most likely new weeds will.
Once the weeds were dead, in about a week, I simply raked up what was left on the ground and spot planted new seeds. Right on schedule, in about a week, new grass seedlings started to emerge. The Weed-B-Gon did not have any effect on getting new grass to grow as soon as I was ready to plant. Replanting information is not included on the bottle, I had to e-mail Ortho for the information.
Something that I like is that the design of the sprayer and tube on the 24 oz bottle allows you to completely empty the bottle. It is a pet peeve of mine to shake a bottle of household cleaner, hear and feel liquid in the bottle but the sprayer refuses to pull up anymore liquid. I hate the idea that I am wasting something simple because of the poor design of the spray mechanism. I am glad that I do not have to go through that with the Weed-B-Gon trigger spray bottle.
As far as I am concerned, the only drawback to Ortho Weed-B-Gon is that it is a chemical means of getting rid of weeds. As with most chemicals they are considered hazardous. In general I tend to take these warning with a grain of salt since nearly everything you buy in our litigious society has a slew of warnings. I did a little reading on the individual chemicals and in this case, I suggest you read and heed the warnings on the back.
If your goal is a weed free lawn, sometimes, despite their potential hazards, you need to employ chemical means. If you are going the chemical route you may as well use something that works the first time and doesnt damage the lawn. Ortho Weed-B-Gon fits the bill.
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