Weeds are an inevitable part of gardening.
And while it might do you some good to spend time outdoors plucking them away, no one has endless hours to spend fending off all those pesky plants.
Thankfully, you no longer have to. Franklin Robotics, the creators of the Roomba, has created a solar-powered weeding robot called Tertill that can protect your plants for you.
The weatherproof robot (pronounced Turtle) lives in your garden and turns on automatically when fully charged. Which means you don’t have to worry about bringing it in and out of the house, nor do you have to keep track of whether or not you remembered to use it at all.
Also, you can leave it outside when it rains. So that’s yet another thing you no longer have to worry about.
On top of all this, organic gardeners can also rest easy. Tertill doesn’t use any chemicals, so you can still have a pesticide-free garden.
How does it work? The Tertill is able to sense plants based on height. A plant tall enough to touch the front of Tertill’s shell activates a sensor that makes the robot turn away.
If you have a small seedling, simply place a set of guards around the plant to keep the Tertill away until it grows a safe height to not be clipped by your Tertill.
On the flip side, a plant that’s short enough to pass under Tertill’s shell activates a different sensor that tells the robot to cut the weed.
Since your Tertill lives in your garden, it attacks any new weeds that pop up at any time. Tertill also syncs to your smartphone using bluetooth, so you can keep up on the conditions of your garden and make sure your little robot is actually doing its job.
One of the best parts of this little gadget? Robotic awesomeness, apparently.
“People have been trying to get weeds out of their garden for a long time: they have tried plastic groundcloth, homemade herbicides, boiling water, and countless other approaches,” according to the makers of Tertill. “But all of these remedies lack a certain robotic awesomeness that Tertill brings to the situation.”
The Tertill is $249 but, sadly, it won’t be available until next spring. You can pre-order it now from IndieGogo, but until then, you’ll have to stick to tending to your garden by hand.
While you’re waiting for your new Tertill to ship, you’ve still got to deal with those pesky weeds (or risk getting dirty looks from your neighbors!)
Don’t let weeds ruin your lawn or your flower beds. Take back control of your garden with these helpful tips for getting rid of these seven common weeds.
Nutgrass, also known as nutsedge, is particularly tricky to manage because it looks like grass. This weed’s leaves are typically thicker and stiffer than most grasses and this plant can produce small yellow or purplish brown flowers.
Yvonne Savio, a manager at the University of California’s Common Ground Garden Program, says the key to getting rid of nutgrass is to remove the “nuts” that grow underground.
“The only way I’ve found to remove any remnants is to dig 6 inches around and under each weed and discard it,” she told the LA Times. “Don’t even think of composting the weed or filtering the soil through a screen. You’ll waste soil but gain peace of mind that you’ll have no more nutgrass within your garden realm.”
Though it can look pretty, bindweed will quickly take over your garden, your flower beds and your lawn if you let it. This creepy crawly vine does just what the name says—it snakes its way around your plants, binding them up and stealing their nutrients.
These plants thrive in moist dirt, so make sure you’re not overwatering. You have to be truly vigilant if you want to get rid of bindweed—pull new plants as soon as you see them, according to Gardens Alive.
These broadleaf plants can grow pretty much anywhere—they like both sun and shade. One dandelion plant can produce up to 15,000 seeds!
If you’ve already got dandelions in your yard, you’ll want to pull them by hand. But you can also prevent these guys from coming back by growing a thick, dense canopy of grass. That’s because dense grass means there isn’t enough room for dandelions to poke through—it’s truly your best defense against weeds.
Each crabgrass plant can produce up to 150,000 seeds. Oof.
The best way to control crabgrass is to strike a balance with the maintenance of your lawn. Too much fertilizer on your lawn will help encourage this little guy to grow, so make sure you follow the application rates on the fertilizer bag.
You can also prevent crabgrass by watering your lawn infrequently and deeply. If you water every day for just a few minutes, you’re creating a nurturing environment for crabgrass. Give your lawn a good soak once a week and crabgrass won’t thrive.