The Corn Gluten Solution
The “new” way to stop weeds does not come from chemicals
Ontario has officially banned the use of chemical weed-killers on household lawns. But if you have been having scary visions of dandelions flooding across your grass, a solution to your worry has already been growing in farmers' fields: corn.
A little less than two decades ago, an Iowa State University horticulturist named Dr. Nick Christians discovered that corn gluten, already in use as a food additive for livestock and pets, had another powerful application: It could prevent the seeds of broadleaf weeds from germinating.
Corn gluten is about 60 per cent protein (which is why it is added to food), and its amino acids inhibit seeds from putting out feeder roots. Thus starved of nutrients and water, the seeds fail to develop. At the same time, corn gluten releases its nitrogen content (about 10%) into the soil, thus nourishing the grass and helping it further to crowd out invasive weeds.
The Iowa State researcher, realizing he had found a safe and environmentally friendly replacement for chemical weed-and-feed products, patented his discovery, and manufacturers across North America are offering homeowners this solution for their lawns. Amaizeingly Green 10-0-0 Corn Gluten is one such solution — and Maple Grove is proud to offer it to you.
As a germination preventative, corn gluten needs to be applied in very early spring, typically from mid to late April. Another application in late summer or early fall can help prevent late-season weed germination as well. Apply it at a rate of 9 kg per 100 square metres (20 lbs. per 1000 sq.ft.). Watering after application will help release its amino acids into the soil.
If you intend to overseed your lawn, do so only after allowing some time to pass from the date you applied the corn gluten, as otherwise it will prevent the grass seed from germinating.
Many homeowners will find that the best results for their lawn will come from combining Corn Gluten Weed Preventer with another fertilizer, such as our 21-7-7 Slow Release, our 18-2-14 Complete, or our 100% organic 4-4-0 Lawn Food, in addition to using good lawn care practices (see our "Helpful Lawn Care Tips" page) such as maintaining optimum soil depth. To save money on purchases of bulk soil or mulch, use our Green Horizons Big Yellow Bag unique promo code. See our "Big Yellow Bag" page for all the details.