Will Vinegar Kill Pampas Grass?

Do you have some Pampas Grass on your property that you would instead get rid of? Besides, the emergence of pampas grass is nothing short of an inconvenience. It grows so quickly and takes up so much space. If it’s not something you particularly want, it’s fair to say it’s nothing but a nuisance! If you’re like me, you would prefer to get rid of it. But will vinegar do the trick? Well, I’m here to clear all of that up! 

So, will vinegar kill pampas grass? Vinegar will kill pampas grass. However, for utmost effectiveness, it’s essential to get both the concentration, as well as the method of application right. 

If you follow the below guidelines, you’ll surely be free of that pesky pampas grass in no time! 

How To Make A Vinegar-Based Solution To Kill Pampas Grass

With vinegar in hand, killing pampas grass has never been easier. 

By adhering to the solution and method, we have no doubt that you’ll achieve your desired results!

What You Will Need

  • Vinegar, of course. You can opt for white vinegar or apple cider vinegar. Both are effective, although white vinegar tends to be cheaper and, therefore, the general preference. 
  • Water.
  • Salt. Recommended, but optional. 
  • A spray bottle with an adjustable nozzle. 

How To Make Your Vinegar Pampas Grass Killer

Requiring just two or three ingredients and a spray bottle, putting together the vinegar solution is easy as pie! 

All you have to do is mix one part vinegar with one part water in a spray bottle and, ta-da, you’re ready to go! 

The volume of solution you ought to produce is dependent on the amount of pampas grass you’re working with. 

Fortunately, if you find you need a top-up, the solution is uber quick and easy to make; an all-around low-effort win! 

How To Safely Use Vinegar To Kill Pampas Grass 

We’ve outlined the general steps below, and we think you’ll find it’s a relatively easy feat, albeit one that requires concentration and precision. 

Prepare The Solution

First, prepare your vinegar solution in a spray bottle. 

I recommend adding salt into the mix too. 

I’ve listed it as optional because, alone, vinegar is a truly effective herbicide, namely due to its innately acidic nature. 

However, the addition of salt helps to dry out the pampas grass’s roots, too, an effect that the vinegar alone is incapable of. 

This, in turn, helps to prevent the regrowth of the pampas grass, and we’re all for future-proof solutions! 

For best results, use one cap of table salt per gallon of vinegar. 

Nevertheless, it’s important to remember that pampas grass is pretty stubborn when up against salt. 

So whilst it’s unlikely that your first attempt probably will wipe the area clear of pampas grass, every little helps! 

Spray With Precision 

Next, spray the vinegar solution generously over the pampas grass. 

Rather than misting the grass, use your bottle’s spray setting to ensure an accurate aim on the pampas grass and the pampas grass only. 

The reason is that vinegar is such an effective herbicide that it subsequently poses a risk to the health of all plants when it comes into contact with them. 

Hence, if you don’t aim well, you run the risk of damaging the surrounding species. 

With precision, you should be able to avoid any ill effects. The same concept applies to the soil. 

If soil finds itself infiltrated by your vinegar and salt solution, its overall pH level will lower, and resultantly, its nutrients, and thus, health will diminish. 

Perhaps the best thing about this solution is the fact that you need not prevent your pets and children from playing outside once you’ve applied it. 

The use of vinegar and salt is a nontoxic approach, which is a win within itself! 

How Long Does Vinegar Take To Kill Pampas Grass?

The vinegar solution is a fairly fast-acting one. Once it has been applied, pampas grass will typically die within 24 hours, although it may take up to one week.

After this point, the dead grass can be removed. 

Other Ways To Kill Pampas Grass

Of course, when it comes to eliminating pampas grass, there are more solutions than one in existence. 

Whilst I am in favor and advocate the vinegar route, namely due to the accessibility of its ingredients and overall non-toxicity, below, I’ve shared a couple of alternative avenues for you to mull over.


As can only be expected, bleach is widely deemed lethal as far as plants are concerned. 

When mixed with water, it exists as an extremely powerful solution. 

Simply apply it on the pampas grass every other day for a few hours at a time, over the span of two weeks. 

Unlike the vinegar solution, this method is toxic. 

Hence, accuracy is a must. 

If the surrounding environment finds itself contaminated with bleach, expect bleak repercussions to ensue. 

Similarly, you will want to ensure that any pets and children, if applicable, are kept completely clear of the bleach solution. 

It may be an effective makeshift herbicide, but it’s a fairly dangerous one and should be used with caution. 


Straight off the shelf! 

Another alternative to vinegar is glyphosate, the predominant ingredient found in most weed killers. 

Such weed killers are effective, but as with bleach, they are highly chemical.  

Nonetheless, despite their strength, it’s likely that more than one application will be required to entirely eliminate the pampas grass. 

For best results, I recommend first pruning the pampas grass and applying the weed killer directly to its freshly cut stalks.

You’ll need to repeat this process after around a week, and maybe again once another week passes until the pampas grass eventually dies. 

How effective is vinegar at protecting your garden? Find out in my following guides: