Weed Control with Boiling Water

At the risk of sounding totally naive, has anyone found a way to use boiling water effectively for weed control on fruits or veggies over an acre or more?

Not a bad question @pmoddle, but as much as boiling water works great on small areas like patios and landscaping spaces, there are a lot of issues in using it on a large scale. The first that come to mind are:

  • The weight of all that water compacting your field when you transport it out there;
  • The fact that not only will it kill your weeds, it’ll kill most other beneficial plants, insects, fungi, and bacteria as well;
  • The economics of using boiling water on a large scale don’t make any sense because of the energy costs involved;
  • The cost of the equipment and infrastructure needed to heat such a large volume of water also probably don’t make a lot of economical sense;
  • The risk potential for injury to the operator/farm workers.

Good points, thank you! My main crop is highbush blueberries, which have historically been sprayed regularly with herbicides, fungicides and pesticides, so the issues related to compaction and beneficial insects were already there. At least these impacts will be temporary. I will continue to research on the cost/energy issues, as well as safety.