Anyone ever use heated ceramic briquettes/lava rocks to kill weeds?

RickF

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Here's the thought.. Go to the local home center and buy either lava rocks (the larger the better) or those ceramic ones that were moulded to look like charcoal briquettes.. Fire up the BBQ and heat those up for 30 minutes or so (to ensure heat saturation) to the hottest heat you can get.. Meanwhile dig a small trench or pit where the weeds have been nasty and running out of control.. Take the heated lava rocks/briquettes and toss them into the trench/hole and cover with dirt.

Assuming you do not have a dirt that has much of anything organic in it and it has been watered recently (at least 24 hours earlier), it should conduct the heat from the lava rocks/briquettes and send it into the surrounding soil killing everything within some amount of space..

Obviously I've not tried this but it seems like it would certainly work assuming the soil is not too wet which could cause the rocks to explode I suppose -- similar to a glass measuring cup that changes temps too fast..

I would think the heat permeation would be 8-10" or more in each direction including down which should completely cook the weeds since the immediate heat will be considerable (>300F)... I think that if someone has too much organic material in the soil they might want to avoid this since it might catch the organic material on fire -- OR perhaps use a lower temperature to heat the rocks to -- perhaps <300F..

Yes, I realize this might be a tedious process but if it can kill my bermuda grass once and for all, then it's worth it to me! I was at the local OSH store the other day and they had one product to eradicate bermuda grass and it said it could take 7 months to be gone with monthly spraying.. Of course I'm also concerned with what sort of chemical residues might remain in the soil for an extended period of time too, hence my interest in some other means..

Comments?
 

vfem

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At this point, I would just use a flame thrower...

Honestly, I saw a guy over off why 210... he burnt his whole front yard. We watched it burn and the guy just sat their with a cigarette and the garden hose to keep it contained. He was just reseeding his lawn! :/

His lawn looks lush and green to me now, I guess it worked!
 

RickF

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I've got one of those but I'm sure I'd get turned in to the AQMD (Air Quality Mgmt District) for polluting! Although it probably wouldn't be that much different than burning those green tree trunks we did last week in Northern CA for our firepit -- much to the dismay of our neighbors in the campground.. :(

In our case I don't think the bermuda would burn anyway as it's way too happy and green.. Ugg!
 

RickF

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I've got one -- got it from the local Harbor Freight tool store.. (cheapie chinese knock-off).. Keep in mind that you're playing with fire and it can get out of control if you're not paying attention!! Have a hose or sprayer handy just in case! If I used one of these in our backyard (where the grass is completely DEAD and dried/brown) it would go up in a matter of minutes!

Hopefully I've got some time this weekend to try out my thoughts for weed removal.. I'll take some pics to post here for your amusement!!
 

RickF

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Ok.. Another thought process on this.. I stumbled across this site:

http://www.thermalweedcontrol.com/Sunburst_Equipment_Line.html

This device uses a combination of low-pressure water with an infrared-heat source to kill the weeds. If that would work, what would keep someone like your or I from welding together a frame of sorts and use a low pressure water sprayer (hand or pump driven?) in combination with an infrared propane heater such as one of these :

http://www.heatershop.com/propane_infrared_heaters.html

If you constructed a raised box to hold the heater off the ground by >6" and were able to spray water using a low-flow to control smoke or flames, that would sound like a DIY version of the above product.. Comments?
 

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