An alternative use for WD-40: Thistles

We are well into summer now, and I’ve got a great one for you! My backyard looks like Eeyore’s wonderland. And I’ve been asking myself the question:

How can I get rid of thistles naturally? The answer came to me; try WD-40! Ok, so I know the product is not “natural”, but it is made up of petrochemicals, which is a-ok with me. Interestingly enough, my boss mentioned to me that she gets rid of thistles by cutting them off at the root, and spraying them with WD-40. No joke. After using this method, her thistle count for this year was only 5. Oh how I dream for 5 thistles! So we gave it a try.

A field in Northern Utah full of thistles

We struggle with putting harsh chemicals down, since every other commercial on TV includes something like “do you or someone you know have non Hodgkin’s lymphoma and used RoundUp? Join our class action lawsuit today!”

We gave our test run two spray bottles of WD-40. One dreary overcast day, Sam and I got out in the yard and hit it pretty good. We didn’t get em all, but we sure cut down enough thistles to top off our trailer load meant for the dump.

WD-40 spray cans sitting on a cement wall in a yard in Northern Utah

What is WD-40 made of exactly? While their formula is proprietary, I did find out that it is 50% mineral spirits, and a mixture of strong lubricating oils (petroleum distillates)

WD-40 Myths: this product does not contain fish oil, and will not help you catch fish!

Additionally, this product is not meant for treating arthritis. Although some people may abide by this product’s usefulness in alleviating their own aches and pains- I would have to say they probably have a major mineral deficiency. Try some Epsom salts people!

Alternative uses for WD-40:

You won’t believe it, but there are over 2,000 listed uses for WD-40, as reported by consumers. There are a few basic categories that these alternative uses fall under:

  • Anti-rust
  • Lubrication
  • Cleaning metal, ceramic, fiberglass, vinyl,
  • Removal of crayons, tape, stains, nail polish, calcium deposits, gum, dirt, grime
  • Prevents freezing, molding, and my personal favorite: beaver chewing.

Thistle stems cut off near the root, still in the ground and green

As it turns out, our endeavors payed off. The roots on these thistles are dying off!

A thistle stem cut off near the root, still in the ground dead and brown

With Love, Erika Nora


  1. OMG, I love your view!!! We live in the burbs of San Diego where all of our neighbors houses are within 10 feet, all the way around… it gets old! But, we don’t have that much yard work, so that’s a bonus! If I ever find a thistle, now I will know what to do with it! I actually use WD-40 to do some of my paintings, I read somewhere that it helps separate the colors in a pour, and it does help, super fun, and handy stuff!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh that’s too cool! Who knew the stuff was so versatile? We visited a friend who lived in the burbs in San Diego 5 years ago, so I know the scene you are describing! Sam’s criteria for our house location was “I want to be able to pee in my yard.” Lol. Mission accomplished.

      Liked by 1 person

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