cornmeal as weed control ?

datura-07April 19, 2010

There was a man on Regis and Kelly this am discussing alternative weed control. First he said use boiling water, then a stronger one is vinegar,salt, water and dish soap. He said you can stop weed seeds from sprouting by spreading corn meal on the ground. I did a search and only found corn meal used as a fertilizer.

I assume it would work like Preen. Does it????


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dan_staley(5b/SS 2b AHS 6-7)

Many, many hits on the Search function on this site, as well as FAQ, many threads with...erm....interesting information, only you can decide whether these opinions are operational or not.


    Bookmark   April 19, 2010 at 2:40PM
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dchall_san_antonio(8 San Antonio)

He was talking about corn gluten meal, although our Gardenweb friend, Nandina, has some evidence that ordinary corn meal has similar preemergent properties.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2010 at 3:48PM
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organicdan(z5b Nova Scotia)

There are two types of cornmeal: the grocery type, and the horticultural type.

From what I just read, cornmeal has fungicidal properties. I might now be a little leary of using it in my garden if it will harm the beneficial fungi. Definitely need to look further. There are recipes for a cornmeal tea used as a foliar fungal spray; roses being one example.

I have used cornmeal off the grocery shelf as a bug killer. They eat it and it swells internally to block the digestive system.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2010 at 4:57PM
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"I have used cornmeal off the grocery shelf as a bug killer. They eat it and it swells internally to block the digestive system."

That does not happen to them any more then it does to you. If it did then the grain weevils would not be around to harass us today.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2010 at 6:36AM
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organicdan(z5b Nova Scotia)

Dah, grain weevils can digest the cornmeal. I know the cornmeal works on cutworms and other larvae.

The best control of weeds is still mulch and crop rotation.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2010 at 8:20AM
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cornmeal mixed with bacon grease and borax actually does a great job on roaches and ants! but its the borax that does the dirty work!

    Bookmark   April 20, 2010 at 10:19AM
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To organic dan: Yes, using the GW search engine will give you all the past posts on cornmeal uses. Lots of interesting chatter. However, as you study you will note that cornmeal basically controls three families of fungus none of which you want on your property. Let me assure you that cornmeal is a safe product to use on lawns and gardens and will not affect beneficial fungus. The one caution I always post, when applying cornmeal on veggie gardens is to use the grocery store bought type as this has been tested for aflatoxins which are injurious to humans. Repeat...use grocery store cornmeal on edible plants.

To datura-07: I have trialed cornmeal in many ways over the years. Cornmeal and corn gluten will somewhat inhibit weed growth if it is spread early before the weeds sprout. I would give both about a 35% success rate. Give it a try if you wish. But, the best weed control method is down on the knees working under and pulling weeds. I use a linoleum knife for this job as it makes quick work of weeding, a project we all love to hate.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2010 at 12:08PM
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I live in central Florida and have been using an organic corn gluten meal blend with great success ( my neighbors are resodding after this last Florida winter). When applied before weeds germinate it is a pre emergent but after that it fertilizes both weeds and turf. Check out the university of Iowa's website where the discovery of corn gluten meals weed killing effects were first studied. You only need to use it once in the early spring as a preemergent and then in the fall as a fertilizer. The weed suppression effects of the corn gluten meal are said to be cumulative over time but I can tell you after one season of use, my problem crabgrass area is non existent at this point. I am thrilled about my results thus far.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2010 at 10:47PM
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tsugajunkie z5 SE WI

Per Dr. Christians at Iowa State the effects of CGM are not cumulative. It breaks down in 5-6 weeks. Application on turf is 10-20 lbs per 1000 sq. ft. Best results come if it is watered in well and then allowed to dry.


    Bookmark   April 21, 2010 at 10:52PM
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