How to kill creeping thistle using salt or vinegar

Written by kenneth coppens
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How to kill creeping thistle using salt or vinegar
The creeping thistle is not protected, so kill it. (Matthijs Wetterauw/iStock/Getty Images)

Creeping thistle, known as Canadian thistle in North America, is designated as an injurious weed in the United Kingdom. This perennial plant has a large root system that spreads out widely and digs down deep into the soil. The extensive root system makes it a difficult weed to control, but there are effective ways to kill it off. Vinegar is one of the most effective ways to control creeping thistle. If you add salt to the equation, the thistle can die off in a matter of a few hours.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Spray bottle
  • Vinegar
  • Knife
  • Salt

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  1. 1

    Fill an empty spray bottle with vinegar. Do not dilute the vinegar with water as this makes it less efficient at killing weeds.

  2. 2

    Cut the stem of each thistle plant with a knife. A small slice is all that is necessary, so do not cut the stem in half.

  3. 3

    Spray one to two sprays of vinegar directly on the cut of each thistle plant. The cut allows the vinegar to spread to the roots more quickly, which in turn kills the plant more quickly. Do not spray the soil with vinegar.

  4. 4

    Sprinkle a pinch of salt at the base of each plant. Salt dehydrates the plants which makes them die even faster. Too much salt will lower the quality of your soil, so use no more than a pinch of salt for each plant.

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