Although not all plants in your garden or lawn are weeds, there are select few that can turn out to be very problematic and invasive. In such cases, most people choose to use herbicides to remove these weeds, but many weeds can become resistant to applications overtime and may respond better to other different control and prevention methods.
If you do choose to use a lawn service to remove weeds, consider looking into lawn treatment companies that specialize in both lawn care and pest removal for weeds or insects. Learn more in our How to Choose a Company for Lawn Care Treatment blog.
In this Sod University article, we’ll discuss different types of weeds and some preventative measures you can take to avoid having them invade your garden or lawn.
Perennial weeds produce very long taproots and they return each year. These weeds grow to a height of up to 10 inches and thrive in poor soils. Tap-rooted weeds take hold of any opening in your lawn, and they can regrow from any part of the root left beneath the ground. They persist through the winter with these deep underground root systems, so getting rid of them involves more than just cutting them to the ground. Besides, they need a larger space to grow because they sprout fast and need sunlight to build. Some perennial weeds include: plantain and dandelions.
Pictured above from left to right: Plantain and dandelion.
However, to prevent this type of weed from growing, you should keep your lawns healthy and thicker because they won’t be a favorable habitat for the plant. The Lawnifi® liquid fertilizer program is great for keeping your lawn thick and healthy so that it outcompetes weeds.
Lawnifi 9 Bottle Annual Fertilizer ProgramProduct on saleFrom: $134.99
To prevent the weeds from growing, you can grow your garden plants closer. This prevents the sun from penetrating down to the ground, which can also encourage weed growth. You can use block spacing rather than growing plants in rows to reduce any open spaces.
This type of weed poses a big problem for many crops. Annual weeds, in comparison to perennials, live for one growing season and then die, whereas a perennial regrows every year. Annual weeds grow fast and produce many small seeds that survive decades before they germinate. They can be hard to deal with, and unlike other weeds, the seeds cover the entire ground. These weeds remove moisture from the soil, so you should eradicate them quickly.
To get rid of annual weeds, you should often draw the collinear hoe in the soil in early summer and spring to disrupt any tiny germinating seeds. You can pull the annual weeds even before they get a chance to produce seeds. If you can damage other plants when removing them, you should cut their stems below the soil; it prevents them from regrowing.
Furthermore, you can prevent these weeds from growing by depriving them of water. You can use the soaker hose, which provides moisture for the plants when needed. If you water the whole garden, the open spaces become conducive for the weeds to breed.
These kinds of weeds feature horizontal stems known as rhizomes that can re-sprout when cut, hence they are hard to control. For weeds like quackgrass, witchgrass and stinging nettle, you can use a spading fork, claw and or trowel to weaken the compacted soil. These rhizomes are more easily pulled out and likely stay intact as opposed to breaking into pieces that will then be left under the soil to sprout. Consistent pulling out of these weeds can pay off. The right time to pull out is when the plants and weeds are still young because they haven’t produced any seeds yet. This further prevents seeds from germinating in the future.
Pictured above from left to right: Quackgrass, witchgrass and stinging nettle.
While creating a friendly environment for your garden and lawn, you are unknowingly crafting an ideal ground for the weeds to thrive. But when you already know how to prevent the weeds, it’s easy to grow your garden plants. Just be sure to keep an eye on your lawn to remove any weeds before they become a huge problem.
If none of these options seem to be working for you, you can always turn to herbicides as a solution. Pre-emergent herbicides serve as preventatives before weeds appear—especially if you have perennial weeds that show up year after year. Here are a few of our top-selling pre-emergents below. As always, read product labels thoroughly before application.
Crabgrass Control Plus 0-0-7 with 0.37% Prodiamine Herbicide$54.95
Prodiamine 65 WDG$109.95
Dimension 2EW$149.95 – $649.95
Pre-emergent herbicides should be applied twice a year during the spring to prevent spring and summer weeds and in the fall to prevent fall and winter weeds. While creating a friendly environment for your garden and lawn, you are unknowingly crafting an ideal ground for the weeds to thrive. But when you already know how to prevent the weeds, it’s easy to grow your garden plants. Just be sure to keep an eye on your lawn to remove any weeds before they become a huge problem.