When I first saw this type of weeder, I thought it was a joke. Why would someone buy what seemed to be a straight stick? It’s not that I’m impressed by complicated tools, but I didn’t see what this tool had to offer.
I have seen it advertised as a dandelion weeder, or simply as a hand weeder. My wise mother-in-law gave me mine. I left it with the other tools until she came out to my garden one day. As she casually and effortlessly pulled weed after weed from my garden, I saw I had misjudged.
Part of the problem was that it’s simplicity had me envisioning just sticking it in the ground. Like that was going to do a lot of good. Possibly, if I had just tried it, I might have accidentally wiggled it and learned something. Perhaps if I had remembered basic physics and how leverage works, I could have saved myself work all those past years.
The dandelion weeder has turned out to be perfect for many of the weeds that grow in between the pavers lining my garden paths. Even with there being a layer of weed barrier fabric and pea gravel over which the pavers are laid, the dandelion weeder creates minimal disturbance to the soil and still gets the weed out.
I know that some of the roots go past the depth of the weed barrier fabric, and sometimes I puncture it, but if the weed root is already putting a hole in the fabric, another small one to get it out doesn’t seem so bad. I have tried just pulling them by hand or waiting for weather conducive to spraying herbicide – only to either have break it at ground level or have them grow quite large before I could spray.
I have now noticed these dandelion weeders on sale in every garden center I have been in. They are always some of the least expensive items in the store. After all, it is just basically a stick with a handle. 😉