How to keep your lawn care easy on the earth.

Dandelions growing on lawn
Credit: Charles Mann/Getty Images

Bulk up your grass.

Thick turf with deep roots is naturally resistant to weeds. To make yours more resilient, use a mulching lawn mower—the clippings return nutrients to the soil. It’s also important to water, fertilize, and mow according to your turfgrass species and region. The folks at your local U.S. Department of Agriculture office can help you determine this info. (To find yours, go to

Eliminate weeds more efficiently.

Use a stirrup (a.k.a. hula) hoe. It cuts weeds off just below the soil and won’t bring up new weed seeds, says Cheryl Wilen, Ph.D., an integrated-pest-management adviser at the University of California Cooperative Extension, in San Diego.

If you must, buy a kind weed killer.

Look for an herbicide that includes one of these ingredients: potassium salts of fatty acid, clove or citrus oil, chelated iron, or corn gluten meal. Always use the recommended amount, and wear the protective gear suggested in the label directions.