University of Florida

Horticultural Soaps as Herbicides

Many gardeners know that horticultural soaps can be used to manage insects in the garden, but not everyone knows that they can also act as herbicides. Horticultural soaps are made from specific salts that are found in fatty acids, a natural component found in plants and animals. In the right concentrations, these salts can be harmful to plants. Certain organic weed control products use these salts to act as a nonselective herbicide that can kill many weeds, grasses, mosses, and algae. Before using thses products, be sure to read and follow label instructions and safety guidelines.

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