10 Best Brush Killers in 2023 – Reviews & Top Picks
Brush killer is essential for a wide variety of jobs, but it can be challenging to choose the correct one for your needs. Whether you need to take down a forest of Kudzu or just kill some poison ivy in the backyard, selecting the right brush killer is essential.
At the very best, the incorrect brush killer may not work appropriately on the plant you need to clear out. At the worst, it may damage plants you were not planning on killing.
Choosing the correct one can be difficult, which is why we wrote this complete review guide. We did all the legwork for you and will help you choose the correct brush killer for your needs.
A Quick Review of Our Favorites in 2023:
|Best Overall||BioAdvanced Brush Killer Plus||
|Best Value||Roundup Poison Ivy Plus Tough Brush Killer||
|Premium Choice||RM43 Weed Preventer Total Vegetation Control||
|Compare-N-Save Concentrate Grass and Weed Killer||
|VPG Fertilome Brush Stump Killer||
The 10 Best Brush Killers:
1. BioAdvanced 704655A Brush Killer Plus – Best Overall
The BioAdvanced 704655A Brush Killer Plus is designed to kill even the most robust, most established plants. It targets the plant down to the root to ensure that it is gone for good – instead of just regrowing months later. It is designed to kill Kudzu, poison ivy, poison oak, blackberry, and bramble. However, it will likely kill other plants as well, so you should be careful where you spray it.
Furthermore, this brush killer is not as expensive as some other brands on the market. It is an excellent value for your money and can be stretched quite far, which is one of the reasons we recommend it. We also found it quite easy to use, though that can be said for most brush killers. They’re all pretty straightforward.
We liked that this brush killer is waterproof for several hours after you apply it. This means you’ll be able to use it whenever you want instead of having to wait for a clear day. You could spray it before a light shower and rest assured that it would still do its job. Overall this is the best brush killer we have reviewed this year.
- Waterproof for several hours
- Targets plants to the roots
- Can kill 70+ different kinds of weeds
- Sprayer is not the highest quality
2. Roundup Poison Ivy Tough Brush Killer – Best Value
As you may guess from the name, the Roundup Poison Ivy Plus Tough Brush Killer is specifically designed to kill poison ivy. However, it can kill other brush as well. This product will kill everything from poison ivy to poison oak to other invasive vines and shrubs. It is designed to kill weeds to the root. The company is so sure that it’ll handle your weed problem that they offer a guarantee. If you aren’t satisfied with this product, you can get a full refund.
After 30 minutes, this brush killer becomes rainproof. This ensures it won’t just wash away when you apply it and will kill the weeds and prevent you from wasting your money. Visible results are expected within 24 hours. However, it may take a bit more time for the plant’s root system to die completely. So, we recommend you leave the plant alone for a few days before trying to remove it. Remember, poison ivy and similar plants are still poisonous after they’re dead. Use gloves to handle them and dispose of them somewhere safely (not in a fire)!
We loved how inexpensive this product was. We think that it’s the best brush killer for the money on the market.
- Kills a variety of vines and shrubs
- Money-back guarantee
- Rainproof after 30 minutes
- Works in 24 hours
- May need to be sprayed multiple times
3. RM43 Weed Preventer Control – Premium Choice
The RM43 Weed Preventer Total Vegetation Control brush killer works a bit differently than others. It is designed to kill weeds and brush and keep them gone for a while. It says that it prevents weeds for up to one year. One gallon-sized bottle can treat up to 17,297 square feet of brush and weeds – more than enough to cover most homeowners for a very long time.
This product is a bit more expensive, but it will last for an extremely long time. It’ll help you save money in the long run, as it’ll keep the weeds gone and treat a large area.
This weed preventer is designed to kill absolutely everything, however. It is not going to spare your grass. It is ideal for driveways, gravel paths, and parking areas – not to spot treat your yard. It is very good at what it does, but this constraint means that it won’t be suitable for all shoppers. Only purchase it if you’re looking to get rid of all the vegetation in an area.
- Kills everything
- Prevents weeds from returning
- Can treat a large area with one gallon
- Will save you money in the long run
- Not great for spot-treating
4. Compare-N-Save Concentrate Grass/Weed Killer
We liked the Compare-N-Save 016869 Concentrate Grass and Weed Killer. It is a decent product. However, it just wasn’t as great as our top three choices. Nothing is phenomenal about it, and there are three better options you could choose from instead.
It is rainproof, but only after 2 hours. This feature is essential for all weed killers, as otherwise, the rain would just wash it all away. But, our top three picks became rainproof faster. You’d likely have to apply this one on a day when you knew it wasn’t going to rain, which can be an issue for some areas. If it rains a lot in your area, then you should likely look elsewhere.
This grass and weed killer contains 41% glyphosate, which is a great weed killer. It does kill weeds quite well and can cover over a 25,000 square foot area. It makes up to 85 gallons of ready-to-use spray, but you do have to do some work to mix it properly. This may be good for particular situations, like when you need to make a tougher weed control for brush, but it generally is just an extra step you have to do.
- Kills weeds effectively
- Treats a large area
- It takes 2 hours to become rainproof
- Requires pre-mixing with water
5. VPG Fertilome 32295 Brush Stump Killer
The VPG Fertilome 32295 Brush Stump Killer is another solid choice. It works decently well and can kill brush as well as stumps. It is suitable around homes, buildings, trails, and fences, though it shouldn’t be used around food you plan on eating. This is not a suitable choice for gardens.
This chemical is used differently than others. You don’t spray it. Instead, you use a paintbrush to cover the plant or stump you’re trying to kill. This is way easier than you might imagine, though it does increase the chance that you’ll accidentally drip some of the product onto yourself. We recommend being extra careful and wearing the proper protective equipment. It should go without saying that you won’t be able to use the paintbrush again as well.
This is one of the very few products we reviewed that can kill stumps, making it a great choice if you have stumps you need to be gone. However, this will kill grass, and it takes a bit more work to use on brush than other choices. In other cases, you’d likely be better off with one of our top three picks.
- Can kill stumps
- Unusual application method
- Works well and effectively
- Difficult to use on weeds and brush
- Will kill grass and other plants
6. Ortho MAX Poison Ivy Brush Killer
The Ortho MAX Poison Ivy & Tough Brush Killer can kill over 60 types of weeds, including poison ivy, poison oak, Kudzu, and wild blackberries. It is also able to kill woody plants like stumps and vines, making it an excellent choice for all-around brush control. It is designed to kill the toughest weeds and accomplishes this quite well. The results are guaranteed, so you can get your money back if you are not satisfied with the product.
It is ready to use and comes with a spray nozzle. This makes the application very straightforward and easy. There is no mixing necessary. You can just grab the bottle and go.
This mixture is also designed to kill plants to the roots, as you would expect from a premium brush killer. It is also rainproof after 2 hours. We recommend spraying it on the brush you intend to kill on a clear day because of this.
This spray kills everything it touches, including grass. A careful application can allow you to spot-treat parts of your yard. However, you should not expect anything to grow in the area for a while after it is treated, making this product a no-no for areas you’re planning on planting grass or a garden.
- Kills over 60 types of plants
- Effective against weeds and stumps
- Waterproof after 2 hours
- Kills everything it touches
- Low-quality applicator
7. Brushtox Brush Killer
The Brushtox Brush Killer does work. However, it landed low on our list because it is expensive and doesn’t provide a significant benefit. You can purchase other products that are just as good for cheaper, so we don’t think most people should waste their money here.
With that said, this product does work quite well. It can treat up to 1 acre, which is a significant amount of ground. However, we have reviewed brush killers that can treat even larger areas. It should be used mostly for controlling woody plants and broadleaf weeds, though it can likely kill other plants as well. It can also control the resprouting of newly cut stumps, though it isn’t necessarily going to help kill an older stump that’s still holding on.
In total, this weed killer can control over 60 types of woody plants and 30 types of broadleaf weeds, like Canada thistle. The label contains a complete list of plants that it can kill.
It does need to be mixed ahead of time, which adds to the amount of work you’ll have to do. That, combined with the cost, is a significant reason why it is so low on our list.
- Can control 60+ types of woody plants
- Can control resprouting of newly cut stumps
- Can kill basal bark
- Must be pre-mixed
8. Image Brush & Vine Killer
The Image Brush & Vine Killer is designed to destroy brush and vine to the roots, ensuring that they won’t just regrow later. It can kill blackberries, Kudzu, poison oak, poison ivy, sumac, and a wide variety of other plants. Perhaps best of all, you can replant in the same area in just one month. This feature makes it an excellent choice for those who plan on planting grass or other plants after the weeds have been cleared. This is about the only application we would suggest it for, however.
This product does require that you mix it with water. This allows you to control the dosage, which may be useful if you’re trying to kill something particularly hardy. However, it also means you’ll have to do more work upfront to get the weeds under control. Most people prefer a ready-to-use sprayer for this reason. This weed killer also doesn’t come with a spray applicator, so you’ll have to buy your own.
On the one hand, this means you can buy a high-quality applicator. On the other hand, though, it does mean you’ll have to spend a bit more money on a suitable applicator.
- Can replant one month after use
- Can control dosage
- It takes multiple weeks to work
- Must be mixed
9. Bonide BND332 Poison Ivy and Brush Killer
The Bonide BND332 Poison Ivy and Brush Killer can kill 240 weeds and woody plants. It kills everything it touches. Because of this, you have to be careful where you spray it, though that could be said for almost everything we reviewed on this list. However, this spray is safe for most types of lawn grasses. When you use it as directed, it should not hurt the grass in your yard. There is a complete list of safe species on the label of the bottle, so be sure your grass’s species is on there before you go at it with this brush killer.
It can also kill stumps and be used for stump removal. This requires you to apply the product to the stump with a paintbrush – instead of using a sprayer of some sort. It prevents the stump from resprouting and kills it ultimately.
This product must be mixed to work correctly. Otherwise, it’ll be way too strong. You’ll also need your applicator since the bottle itself doesn’t come with one.
- Works on 240 weeds and woody plants
- Can kill stumps
- Must be mixed
- Does not come with an applicator
10. Southern Ag Brush Killer
The Southern Ag Brush Killer was not our favorite, by far. It works on many types of plants, including woody plants and stumps. However, that’s about where the good things stop.
It must be mixed with gallons of water beforehand, which means you’ll need an applicator and a decently large mixing bucket.
This stuff is powerful, so you have to be very careful where you use it. It shouldn’t be used around animals or children, as it may make them sick. It will kill your grass and practically anything else it touches. However, stuff likely will not regrow in that area for a while. Because of this, it should only be used in areas where you don’t plan on growing anything.
Its strength means that it can only be used in particular circumstances. For the average homeowner, they’re going to get more use out of one of our top picks. It is best to pass on this product unless you need to kill the plants in an area and keep them from growing back.
- Kills everything
- Will kill grass
- Should not be used around animals or children
- Very, very strong
Buyers Guide – Purchasing the Best Weed and Brush Killer
Most homeowners are going to need a brush killer at some point. However, these products are used for a wide range of products. You may just need to kill some poison ivy in your yard, but another person may need to clear a whole field. Someone else may just want to prevent weeds from poking through their gravel. You need to know what to look for to choose the best brush killer for your needs, hence this buyer’s guide.
How Do Brush Killers Work?
These products almost always contain a variety of chemicals. Different chemicals are effective on different plants. Most brush killers are specially engineered to kill woody plants. Some can even kill stumps and prevent them from regrowing.
In general, these chemicals are considered bad for the health of nearly all living things. Most brush killers will kill grass and other plants if they are applied to them. Powerful chemicals may also injure small animals and children, especially things like fish. They work very well at killing brush, but you have to be careful in ensuring that is all they kill.
When Should You Use Brush Killers?
Most brush killers can be used at all times. You don’t typically have to wait for the right moment to use them. With that said, though, you should use them on a clear day when you aren’t expecting rain. Otherwise, all of the chemicals will simply be washed away, and that is the last thing you want.
Some brush killers work better at certain times of the year than others. Preferably, you want to use the killer when the plant is most active. In these situations, the plant will soak up more of the brush killer, and there is a higher chance that it will die altogether. Most plants are going to be more protective in the winter, so you shouldn’t expect to see rapid results then. Instead, spray the plants in the spring or whenever you notice them starting to sprout.
Types of Brush Killer
There are two main types of brush killer. Which one you need will depend on the plants you’re planning on killing. Neither option is necessarily better than another – it just depends on what you’re doing.
Systemic Brush Killer
This type of brush killer kills everything it touches. It does not discriminate based on the type of plant, and it may prevent other plants from regrowing for an extended period. Because these brush killers destroy everything, they are very good at their job.
However, they will kill the grass in your yard and other plants nearby. Because of that, they’re most useful in areas where you don’t want anything else ever to regrow. It may work best on gravel driveways and fence lines, where you don’t plan on planting anything at all.
Selective Brush Killer
This type only targets specific plants. They do this in a variety of ways, but all you need to know is that it won’t kill your grass. You can safely use these in your yard without waking up to a whole bunch of dead grass the next morning.
Many of these are a bit weaker, which helps the grass and other plants survive. Sometimes, you can even replant new grass and other plants after the weeds have been controlled. This is probably the best choice for most homeowners since you’re probably going to be using the chemicals selectively only to kill individual plants.
Important Factors to Consider
There are a few factors you need to consider when deciding on which brush killer to purchase. Here are a few tips to help you choose the best one for your situation:
- Type: The type of brush killer is essential. We spoke about this factor in-depth above, so we aren’t going to go in much detail here again. Just remember that the type — systemic or selective —does make a difference in what you can use the product for.
- Strength: People typically think that the stronger the brush killer, the better. However, this isn’t always true. A brush killer can be too strong, preventing anything from growing in the area for a long time. In some cases, it might even injure small animals and children. You want a brush killer that is strong enough to do its job, but not so strong that it is going to harm the surrounding land.
- Preparation: Some brush killers must be mixed beforehand and moved into a separate bottle for application. This can take a lot longer than you may be expecting, especially if you don’t kill brush for a living. You’ll also have to purchase your own applicator, which is just more money you’ll have to spend. At the same time, some brush killers come ready-to-use. As you might imagine, this is the kind we prefer.
- Rainproof: It is going to rain in your area at some point. When it does, you don’t just want all the brush killer to wash away. Luckily, most are rainproof to some extent. However, many need to sit on the plant for sometime before they become rainproof. This can be a problem for some people in areas where it rains a lot. If you’re in an area that gets a lot of rain, you’ll want a product that becomes rainproof very quickly.
We hope this article helped you get a handle on the surprisingly complicated world of brush killer. No matter your project, hopefully, this article helped you figure out which brush killer you need to accomplish your task.
As our very top pick, we recommend the BioAdvanced 704655A Brush Killer Plus. This product can kill most tough plants down to their roots and becomes rainproof in only a few hours, ensuring that it won’t just wash away. It comes in a variety of container options as well.
If you’re trying to stick to a budget, the Roundup Poison Ivy Plus Tough Brush Killer is another decent option. It can get the job done but isn’t going to cost you an arm and a leg.
- See Also: Best Stump Killers
- 1 A Quick Review of Our Favorites in 2023:
- 2 The 10 Best Brush Killers:
- 2.1 1. BioAdvanced 704655A Brush Killer Plus – Best Overall
- 2.2 2. Roundup Poison Ivy Tough Brush Killer – Best Value
- 2.3 3. RM43 Weed Preventer Control – Premium Choice
- 2.4 4. Compare-N-Save Concentrate Grass/Weed Killer
- 2.5 5. VPG Fertilome 32295 Brush Stump Killer
- 2.6 6. Ortho MAX Poison Ivy Brush Killer
- 2.7 7. Brushtox Brush Killer
- 2.8 8. Image Brush & Vine Killer
- 2.9 9. Bonide BND332 Poison Ivy and Brush Killer
- 2.10 10. Southern Ag Brush Killer
- 3 Buyers Guide – Purchasing the Best Weed and Brush Killer
- 4 Conclusion