Eliminate weeds on a chain link fence with herbicide, and leave your weed eater in the garage.

How to Get Rid of Grass Around a Chainlink Fence

by Mary Lougee

Annual and perennial grass grows next to chain link fences so close that removal with a weed eater is necessary to reach the blades that a lawn mower can’t. Glyphosate herbicides remove unsightly grass by entering the blades, traveling to the roots and killing it permanently. Glyphosate works best when grass is short and actively growing, and the temperature exceeds 60 degrees Fahrenheit.

Mow your lawn next to the chain link fence as close to it as possible with the deck and blades in the lowest position. Travel along the fence line with the side discharge chute pointing away from the fence so the deck and wheels on the opposite side are next to the fence. This practice cuts grass short for easier removal and leaves a visible path next to the fence that your mower can’t reach.

Put safety glasses on to protect your eyes from splashing chemicals. Dress in long pants and a long-sleeve shirt, and put on gloves to protect sensitive skin from herbicides.

Measure glyphosate herbicide according to the package instructions, and put it in a garden sprayer. About 30 herbicides contain glyphosate as the active ingredient, and each has different mixing rates. Generally, the mixture for grass control is 1 to 2 ounces per gallon of water.

Fill the garden sprayer with water from a garden hose. Swirl the tank with one hand while filling it to mix the contents thoroughly. Place the lid on the sprayer, and turn it clockwise to tighten it. Pump the handle on top up and down to add pressure to the herbicide.

Place a piece of scrap plywood about 6 inches wide at the base of a chin link fence with the 6-inch side vertical to the ground and touching the fence. Turn the nozzle on the garden sprayer to distribute a small pattern in a fine mist.

Depress the sprayer handle, and aim the flow of herbicide directly at the plywood in front of the fence. Cover the area that the lawn mower does not reach up to the plywood screen on the fence. Spray the grass to wet it thoroughly down the plywood length, releasing the handle when you are within a few inches of the end of the plywood.

Pick up the plywood, and move it down the fence line to cover the next length of grass by the fence. Position the board next to the fence, and spray that length of grass in the same manner. Reposition the board as you move down the fence to spray the entire fence line with herbicide.

Items you will need

  • Lawn mower
  • Safety glasses
  • Long pants
  • Long sleeve shirt
  • Gloves
  • Glyphosate herbicide
  • Garden sprayer
  • Garden hose
  • Scrap plywood (6 inches wide)


  • Choose a windless day to spray glyphosate to avoid herbicide drift to other plants or grass.
  • Annual grass browns within two to four days, and perennial grass show signs of dying in a week to 10 days.
  • The plywood acts as a shield so you do not kill grass on the opposite side of a shared chain link fence. However, if your neighbor who shares the fence agrees, you can treat grass on both sides of the fence without a shield.
  • Treat grass on a day with no rain in the forecast. If the herbicide does not dry before it rains, reapply it.
  • Glyphosate herbicides are available in ready-to-use containers with no mixing necessary for smaller areas.


  • Keep children and pets out of the yard until the herbicide dries.
  • Store herbicides and chemicals out of kids reach in a locked cabinet.

About the Author

Mary Lougee has been writing for over 10 years. She holds a Bachelor's Degree with a major in Management and a double minor in accounting and computer science. She loves writing about careers for busy families as well as family oriented planning, meals and activities for all ages.

Photo Credits

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