Best Weed Killers for Lawns in 2022

Joseph Gilpin
By Joseph Gilpin • Last Updated: June 15, 2022
Best Weed Killers for Lawns in 2022

As much as we want to eliminate weeds by mechanical hand-pulling and without resorting to chemicals, some cases demand the intervention of weed killers.

DON’T WORRY!

The right weed killer won’t damage your other crops and flower beds in your vegetable garden. There are also organic, selective, and pet-friendly options out in the market now.

Here’s a quick list of the best weed killers for your lawn:

  1. Best Overall: Syngenta Tenacity Turf Herbicide
  2. Best Value: Roundup Weed Concentrate Max Control
  3. Best Budget: Southern Ag Amine Weed Killer
  4. Green Gobbler Vinegar Weed Killer
  5. Scotts Turf Builder Weed
  6. Spectracide Weed and Grass Killer
  7. Scotts Halts Crabgrass and Weed Preventer
  8. Compare-N-Save Herbicide

8 Best Weed Killer for your Lawn

1.) Best Overall: Syngenta Tenacity Turf Herbicide

The Tenacity herbicide is one of the well-liked systemic weed killers in the market. It’s a selective weed killer that doesn’t harm other plants.

Features and Specifications

It has these impressive features:

  • Target Weeds: Barnyardgrass, Carpetweed, Chickweed, Crabgrass, Dandelion, Foxtail, Goosegrass, Henbit, Wild Carrot, and other broadleaf weeds
  • Active Ingredient: 40% Mesotrione
  • Shelf Life: 5-8 years from manufactured date
  • Item Weight: 8 ounces

Overall Thoughts

The Tenacity herbicide works wonders on certain annual weeds like crabgrass. We suggest following the list of target pests the manufacturers provided for the best results.

Remember that it’s not a magical herbicide. In some cases and climates, pesky weeds are more stubborn and difficult to control.

And as a selective herbicide, the process may be slower than a kill-all chemical. Most users get frustrated waiting for the effects, especially since weeds proliferate. That’s understandable.

But as long as you follow proper instructions and ratios and throw in a little bit of patience, you’ll appreciate it in the long haul.

Benefits Worth Mentioning

This weed killer has the following pros:

  • It acts both as a pre-emergent and post-emergent weed killer.
  • It works even on seedlings, preventing further sprouting and spreading.
  • It’s a selective herbicide; it won’t harm your grass and other beneficial plants.
  • It can kill up to 46 kinds of broadleaf weeds.
  • Targets both crabgrass and broad leaf weeds.
  • Long-lasting weed control effect.
  • Applicable all year round.

Drawbacks to Consider

However, these are the cons to watch out for:

  • It doesn’t work on grassy weeds like Nimbeweed, Wild Violet, Loriape, etc.
  • You may see a little bleaching on treated or contact areas.
  • It’s a slow, selective weed killer.

2.) Best Value: Roundup Weed Concentrate Max Control 365

If slow and selective isn’t your forte, you may need a fast-acting weed killer. Though it’s a little expensive, the Roundup weed killer is strong and swift!

Features and Specifications

  • Active Ingredients: 18% Glyphosate, 1.6% Imazapic, 0.73% Diquat
  • Rainproof: 30 minutes
  • Item Weight: 32 ounces

Overall Thoughts

Think of Roundup 365 as a kill-all solution for the most stubborn weeds. It’s for the situations where you want to get it over with. They also have variants that are good for flower beds and vegetative gardens.

Since it’s concentrated, it can kill grass and other healthy plants. It’s also not the safest to apply with the presence of humans. Avoid inhalation and close contact.

We suggest using it more as a spot treatment to avoid harming other crops. Trust us; it works fast, and if done right, you’ll be eradicating most of your weed control problems.

Benefits Worth Mentioning

  • It’s a concentrated weed killer, so it kills weeds fast with no problem! It kills to the roots.
  • You can already see the effect in 6-12 hours.
  • It’s rainproof.
  • You can use it on lawns, driveways, patios, sidewalks, and gravel areas.

Drawbacks to Consider

  • It’s one of the most potent contact weed killers; some may find that it’s too strong.
  • It kills any plant that comes in contact with it.
  • It may not be safe for humans to inhale.

3.) Best Budget: Southern Ag Amine Weed Killer

Here’s an inexpensive but effective weed killer for those needing selective broadleaf weed control.

Features and Specifications

  • Active Ingredients: 2,4-D (highly effective chemical)
  • Item Weight: 32 ounces
  • Post-emergent herbicide

Overall Thoughts

Not all of us are willing to splurge money on commercial weed killers, primarily if used in vast areas.

This 2,4-D Amine weed killer is effective in tackling weeds without damaging your flower beds or your wallet.

We suggest applying it to young and sprouting grassy weeds to see the best results as a post-emergent herbicide. Using a little more usually does the trick if you notice a slower process.

Benefits Worth Mentioning

  • It’s inexpensive and economical.
  • It’s most effective in turfs, pastures, rangeland, golf courses, parks, etc.
  • It doesn’t kill grass, mainly St. Augustine grass.
  • It works best on broadleaf weeds and woody plants.

Drawbacks to Consider

  • It’s not a good pre-emergent (which is a con if compared against more versatile weed killers)
  • It’s not as strong on hardy weeds like crabgrass, oxalis, and bermuda grass.

4.) Green Gobbler Vinegar Weed Killer

Some of you here are probably looking for a natural weed killer for lawns that’s organic and pet-friendly. Here’s your answer!

Features and Specifications

  • Active Ingredients: 20% vinegar, ethanol distilled from corn grain; 20% acetic acid
  • Item Weight: 8.91 pounds
  • Target Pests: broadleaf and grassy weeds, crabgrass, dandelions, cover weeds, white clover, nutsedge, moss, etc.
  • Post-emergent weed control.

Overall Thoughts

Because of the vinegar’s organic nature, don’t expect it to be as strong as most weed killers made of concentrated chemicals.

The Green Gobbler can control existing weeds, but it’s not a grassy weed preventer. It’s best for mild cases and not so much as a commercial weed killer.

But if you have pets and kids running around your lawn or other plants you want to protect, the slower weed control process is a small price to pay for their safety!

Benefits Worth Mentioning

  • Desiccation in less than 24 hours.
  • It’s safe for residential, commercial, agricultural, and industrial use. Use it on flower beds, driveway, sidewalks, etc.
  • No toxic and cancerous chemicals like Glyphosate, bleach, or fluorine.
  • OMRI certified for organic use.
  • Safe for pets and children.

Drawbacks to Consider

  • Not suitable for severe cases. It won’t kill weeds completely if your lawn is badly infected.
  • Not the best for perennial weeds.
  • It doesn’t kill the roots.

5.) Scotts Turf Builder Weed Killer

This turf builder from Scotts also acts as fertilizer more than a weed killer. This product is a win-win since a healthy lawn is still the best grassy weeds preventer.

Features and Specifications

  • Item Weight: 32 oz.
  • Target Pests: dandelion, clover, red sorrel, ground ivy, chickweed, etc.
  • Weedgrip technology; claims to kill weeds not seen with the naked eye

Overall Thoughts

If you’re looking for a weed killer that can also feed your lawn, this one from Scotts is like “hitting two birds with one stone.”

Of course, the effectivity also means that it contains more potent chemicals. Apply weed killer in moderation to not kill other plants.

If you have pets or children, keep them away from contact areas or opt for organic ones instead.

Benefits Worth Mentioning

  • Weed killer and fertilizer in one.
  • Thickens lawns and crowds out weeds.
  • Cover a large lawn area.
  • It’s one of Scotts’ top weed killers.
  • Most effective for dandelion and clover control.
  • It can be used on tall fescue, zoysia, ryegrass, etc.
  • Effects show up within a week.

Drawbacks to Consider

  • Excessive application may turn leaves and other beneficial plants brown.
  • Not the best for crabgrass.
  • Tedious preparations as opposed to other lawn weed killers.
  • Not organic; it’s not pet or children-friendly.

6.) Spectracide Weed and Grass Killer

Another one of the top weed killers, Spectracide, works as fast as 3 hours! You can immediately see the results.

Features and Specifications

  • Item Weight: 64 oz.
  • Item Form: Spray
  • Non-selective weed killer; grass killer concentrate.
  • Most effective during warm and sunny weather (when the temperature is over 60 degrees)
  • Rainproof for 15 minutes

Overall Thoughts

If you need something that’s strong and works fast, go with Spectracide. If you need the powers of non-selective weed killers, you probably have a moderate to severe case of lawn weeds.

A weed grass killer that kills weeds within 24 hours is no joke. It would help if you had an excellent formulation to achieve that, and Spectracide is the answer!

Be careful not to harm other plants. In addition, it’s not the safest option for pets and people.

Benefits Worth Mentioning

  • It kills weeds fast and effectively
  • It’s best for shrubs and unwanted grasses
  • It’s great for large areas
  • It can be used for re-seeding lawns
  • It can kill broadleaf weeds without harming non-weed grass.

Drawbacks to Consider

  • The sprayer applicator is not the best (a minor issue).
  • While it can kill broadleaf and grassy weeds, it’s not as effective for poison ivy.
  • It’s a more potent weed killer.

7.) Scotts Halts Crabgrass and Weed Preventer

After discussing different post-emergent weed killers, here’s a good entry for those looking for pre-emergent herbicides.

Features and Specifications

  • Item Weight: 20 pounds
  • Prevents: winter weeds, poa annua, henbit, chickweed, goosegrass, barnyard grass
  • Grassy weed preventer.
  • Apply in spring for crabgrass and season-long weed prevention
  • Apply in fall to prevent moss

Overall Thoughts

Most herbicides in the market are post-emergent weed killers because it’s easier to attack an existing weed plant.

Finding pre-emergent weed killers as effective as Scotts Halts crabgrass is already a blessing. The weed control starts from seed germination, so you don’t have to deal with crabgrass all season long.

But keep in mind that in controlling weeds, you must take note of the timing. Make sure you use the weed killer before germination, or else it’s ineffective.

Benefits Worth Mentioning

  • This weed killer gets rid of crabgrass all season long with just one application.
  • Apply weed killer regardless of season (spring, fall, winter) to be ready for the summer spread of crabgrass
  • Rain, snow, or freezing weather won’t affect its quality
  • Effective weed preventers are rare, so this is a good product

Drawbacks to Consider

  • As the name suggests, it’s best for crabgrass. It may not be as effective on other grassy weeds popping up.
  • Wrong timing may make it ineffective.

8.) Compare-N-Save Herbicide

Last but not least, here’s another best weed killer for lawns guaranteed to be strong and effective.

Features and Specifications

  • Item Weight: 128 fluid ounces
  • Active Ingredients: 8.6% Dimethylamine Salt of 2,4-D acid
  • Targets: clover, chickweed, thistle, plantain, primrose, ground ivy, radish, etc.
  • Covers over 16,000-25,000 square feet.
  • Visible results in 2-4 days
  • Rainproof
  • Effective for broadleaf weeds and other grassy weeds.

Overall Thoughts

Compare-N-Save is another stronger weed killer that takes care of most problem areas on the lawn. The downside is that it may also affect good plants other than killing weeds.

As we said, whether or not it’s worth it depends on the severity of your situation. But one thing we’re sure about is that if you need a potent lawn weed killer, then you also have to be careful with the application.

Benefits Worth Mentioning

  • Rapid-acting weed killer.
  • Can kill weeds up to 200 different types.
  • It’s rainproof for an hour after application.
  • This weed killer can work on large lawns and spaces.
  • It won’t kill good grass.
  • It can act as a non-selective weed killer for warm and cool-season grasses.
  • It can also be a spot-treatment lawn weed killer.

Drawbacks to Consider

  • As selective weed killers, they can harm vegetable and flower beds.
  • It does not kill weeds like crabgrass or quackgrass.

What to Consider When Choosing the Best Weed Killers

Weed Killer Buyers Guide

Besides our list, there are so many variations of weed killers out in the market. We know it can be overwhelming, but let us guide you!

Your Area Situation

The specific type of weed grass killer depends on your location as well. For instance, if the landscapes are dominantly rocky or made of concrete, then a non-selective herbicide will do the trick.

If you live near bodies of water, or if animals and humans surround you, then organic weed killers would be the better option.

The climate also plays an important role. Some grass killer herbicides work best at warmer temperatures, while some are more effective in colder places.

Your Specific Weed Problem

You need to know what you’re dealing with to control weeds effectively. For example, are you dealing with cool-season grasses, crabgrass, or some broadleaf weeds?

Getting a weed grass killer that attacks a specific problem will significantly speed up the process.

Another scenario would be the growth situation of your weeds. Is it still a seed waiting to germinate? Then get pre-emergent weed killers.

Has it already sprouted? Then get post-emergent herbicides.

Understanding how to deal with different kinds of weeds also help with choosing the best weed killer for lawns.

  • Annual Weeds: They grow yearly. Use pre-emergents and post-emergents in a cycle.
  • Perennial Weeds: They can get out of control. Use a potent herbicide for killing weeds like this.
  • Biennial Weeds: Post-emergent is sufficient.

Safety

Chemicals kill weeds, but they can also harm living things. Organic options will be the best if you live with animals or vulnerable people.

It’s great to now have weed killer for lawns made with more natural ingredients. If this can benefit you, then we suggest jumping on the opportunity.

Again, expect it kills weeds slower, but it’s a worthy sacrifice to make for everyone’s health and safety.

Area Coverage

Some weed killer options for lawns are highly effective, but they don’t work for a large area. It may be a matter of price, concentration level, or potency of the solution.

It helps to know where you’ll use it in choosing a great weed grass killer for your situation.

Clover Killer for Lawns

Explaining Pre-Emergent vs. Post-Emergent Weed Killers

Both are weed killers, but they serve varying purposes. We have repeatedly mentioned these two above, so let’s explain the critical difference and the best ways to use them.

Pre-Emergent Weed Killers

A pre-emergent is also known as a weed preventer. As the term suggests, we apply it before the weed fully emerges.

It can either be on a bare spot or seeds that haven’t germinated. The goal is to kill them off before they even get the chance to grow and spread.

With this type of herbicide, timing is essential. It would be best to hit the window before its season for total effectiveness. The most familiar example would be crabgrass.

These weeds grow during the hot summer. The perfect timing to apply pre-emergents would be early spring sothat the crabgrass won’t grow all year long.

Checking the weather will also help. Usually, rain after the application is a total waste. But now, there are already weed killers that remain rainproof a few hours after applying.

Understand that pre-emergents do not kill existing weeds.

Post-Emergent Weed Killers

On the other hand, post-emergents do not prevent weeds; they kill them. Don’t be surprised if you see new sprouts even after applying the herbicide.

Again, as the name suggests, you use this after the plant has already emerged or grown. Timing isn’t as vital in this case since you’re technically killing the weed right now.

For post-emergents, there are two common types. One is selective, and the other is non-selective.

Selective

These are focused on targeting specific weed types. They won’t harm other lawn grass and plants as long as they don’t come in excessively close contact with the chemicals.

While this is good, the only con is that the process will be slower since the potency is slightly different.

It’s best to use selective herbicides if:

  • You have plants around to worry about.
  • You don’t want chemicals to touch your food crops.
  • The weed situation is mild.

Non-Selective

These are more potent chemicals that will kill any plant it comes in contact with. Whether it’s your intended target or a healthy plant, a non-selective weed killer will harm them.

People use non-selective herbicides as spot-treatments instead of spraying them everywhere to avoid harming flower beds or food crops.

It’s best to use non-selective herbicides if:

  • Your weed problem is severe.
  • You want to start anew with your lawn, which is a kill-all solution.
  • You don’t mind killing a little lawn grass.

Non-Chemical Solutions for Lawn Weeds

If you genuinely dislike the idea of applying herbicides on your lawn, you can also opt for mechanical solutions.

However, keep in mind that these will only work if your weed infection is not yet invasive.

Manual Uprooting

One of the most effective ways is to uproot them. This might be even more effective since you’re removing them from the roots, which is what most herbicides tend to miss.

It works if you’re working with a small garden or backyard lawn at home. But imagine if you have to work with industrial space, this solution is immediately out of the question.

Weed Eaters

No, weed eaters are not animals that will eat weeds in your lawn. It’s a machine, similar to a lawnmower, and it trims off weeds.

To understand how it works, you can watch this elaborate video by Youtube creator SmarterEveryDay.

But since it’s only trimming part of the weed grass, it may not entirely solve the problem. As long as they’re still rooted to the ground, expect more growth and spread.

Best Weed Killer Recap [TL;DR]

Let’s summarize our top weed killer picks from this review.

To be fair, we believe in all the products we’ve mentioned. But we’ve ranked our top 3 winners based on the best overall, the best value, and the best budget.

Best Budget: Southern Ag Amine Weed Killer

The Southern Ag Amine weed killer proved to us that even inexpensive products could do the job and do it well at that.

It’s best for large coverage areas, and it doesn’t harm other lawn grass like St. Augustine.

Best Value: Roundup Weed Concentrate Max Control

The price is a little higher than the others, but the potency of the Roundup Max Control 365 is one of the best out there. It gives you the value you expect.

It’s a non-selective concentration that can potentially harm other crops, so be wary of that.

Best Overall: Syngenta Tenacity Turf Herbicide

Most herbicides in the market are either too strong or too weak. We find the Tenacity one of the safest options, and the price tag is also reasonable.

It effectively kills weeds without hurting ornamental plants or your desired grass. People also use Tenacity for spot treatment.

While Tenacity is excellent, it’s still not the magic treatment for all turf types.

Runner-Ups

  • Green Gobbler Vinegar Weed Killer
  • Scotts Turf Builder Weed
  • Spectracide Weed and Grass Killer
  • Scotts Halts Crabgrass and Weed Preventer
  • Compare-N-Save Herbicide

Conclusion

Out of all the weed killers in the market, the best one must fit your situations and circumstances.

Although we believe the Syngenta Tenacity Turf Herbicide is the best product on this list, it should NOT stop you from choosing the other options!

Our top suggestion is for you to assess your weed situation first, then use this article as your buying guide in choosing the best herbicide for you!

Thank you for reading, and we hope your weed-killing activities will be much easier and better with these products!

Frequently Asked Questions [FAQs]

We want to share some FAQs with you if you think the article did not provide enough information regarding the topic!

What’s the Strongest Chemical in Killing Weeds?

If you want to eradicate weeds once and for all, the chemical to look for is Glyphosate. It can kill any plant that comes in contact with it.

That’s why if you noticed, most non-selective herbicides contain Glyphosate. Some experts say that it is a carcinogen, while others debunk that claim.

Either way, it’s a strong chemical. Always keep a safe distance and don’t let pets or children near those areas upon application.

Weed killer applications should only be once or twice a year. But it varies on the conditions of the situation. For example, crabgrass pre-emergents are enough once a year.

How to Make a Homemade Weed Killer?

Most herbicides similarly contain acetic acid to dry out the plant. Home ingredients like white vinegar and salt can be a good substitute.

To make it stick, add liquid dish soap to the mixture. A little fun fact, some people also add soap to Tenacity for the same purpose.

But then again, don’t expect fast and significant results with home remedies. Plants sprayed with vinegar and salt can quickly recover, so consistent application is needed.

Bleach is a great alternative killer that can kill weeds but generally kills. Once you apply bleach on a particular spot, you may not be able to grow anything else.

How Long Does It Take To Kill Weeds?

Assuming that you are not using highly intensive chemicals, it takes weeks for plants to die entirely.

If you use herbicides, some of them show withering results within a day, but that doesn’t mean that it’s dead.

If you’re using home remedies, expect the process to be longer. Everyday observation helps you identify if it’s working or not, if you need to apply more or not, and so on.

It takes a lot of patience to control weeds, especially on an expansive lawn entirely. It is also why some people opt for non-selective killers to get the work done quickly.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.