A weed is any plant growing where you do not want it to. Some weeds are less desirable than others; some may even become an accepted as part of your garden or lawn in time. The main trouble with weeds is that they compete with your desired plants for nutrients, water, air and light. If you have too many weeds you will end up with weaker plants. In a vegetable garden this will result in less produce of a lesser quality than you would have without the weeds. Besides, in a garden setting, weeds tend to just look bad. After you plant your garden there are several options for reducing the amount of weeds in your garden.
Apply a thick layer of mulch. Use organic mulch and spread it in a good, thick layer over your garden. Even if the weeds and their seeds are not completely smothered any weeds that do make an appearance will be easier to pull.
Keep your garden paths clean. By keeping your walkways between rows and planting beds clear of weeds you will reduce the risk of weed seeds making their way from one location to another.
Cultivate the soil around your vegetable plants. Hoeing or lightly tilling the soil between vegetables will expose the roots of weeds and kill many of them. Cultivate a few times a week in the first month or so of gardening to get any weeds while they are small and young for the best effect. There are tools available for this purpose in your local home and garden center.
Pull the weeds by hand. Weeds are fairly easy to pull if you get them while young. Be certain that you pull them up roots and all as soon as you notice them.
Regular care will keep your garden healthy and plants producing well. By keeping up with the needs of your garden and weeding regularly the work load will stay small, however if you put it off too long you might end up with a much larger workload.