“Even the best-tended lawns come under attack from common weeds.”

Weed seeds float in on the wind, creeping around and claiming their territory. Weeds  you thought you pulled out, quietly come back and continue to grow again and again. This can be frustrating, however how well your lawn copes with the onslaught of such weeds depends on the weeds involved, and your lawn’s overall health.

That is why at Top Turf we treat our lawns with Pre-emergent weed controls, sometime called preventers, that work to keep weed seeds from germinating and developing and Post-emergent weed controls that fight weeds that have already germinated and emerged from the soil. In conjunction with Free Service Calls to spot treat pesky weeds that just have a strong will not give up and die. Our spot weed control is not an on contact killer, because those types of weed killers also kill the grass surrounding the weed and that is not what we want to do. I mean we work so hard to get you a beautiful healthy green lawn why would we want to kill it? So what we use instead is a slow weed kill formula that will slowly kill the weed down to its root, leaving the grass surrounding the weed alive and thriving.

COMMON WINTER ANNUAL WEEDS

Annual winter weeds germinate in the fall and winter and grow actively in spring. Gardeners are often surprised how quickly these weeds can seemingly pop up overnight in their yards and gardens, being unaware that they may have been growing slowly all winter long. After they flower in spring they die and disappear for the summer only to return in fall or winter when new seeds germinate. We control with a broadleaf  postemergent herbicide applied when the weeds are actively growing in the spring.

FUN FACTS: About Weeds You Never Knew!

Weeds are simply nature’s way of quickly covering up bare ground. Opportunistic and aggressive, they are genetically designed to germinate, grow and propagate faster than most desirable plants. Most plants only produce several hundred seeds, but weeds are especially prolific. One single weed can produce anywhere from 10,000 to 100,000 seeds. With these odds, it’s easy to see how weeds can quickly take over your garden or lawn if left untreated.

Burweed

Type: Broadleaf annual
Size: 3 to 4 inches 6″ in diameter.Leaves are approximately ½ to 1½ inches long and ¼ to ½ inch wide.
Where it grows: grows flat along the ground
Appearance: The seed head of Sandbur is a spike of tiny spurs.
Control: Apply a preemergent herbicide before the weed seeds germinate
Note: Healthy lawn grasses can outcompete burweed for light, water and nutrients and reduce the level of infestation. The sharp-tipped spiny burs of this weed can cause minor irritation to the skin. Key identification characteristics of lawn burweed are: 1) opposite, sparsely hairy leaves that are divided into numerous segments, or lobes, b) small, inconspicuous flowers, and c) spine tipped burs that are found in the leaf axils (junction of leaf and stem). Lawn burweed attains an overall diameter of up to 6 inches and a height of about 3 to 4 inches. It is commonly found in the Coastal Plain and Piedmont regions of Georgia.

Chickweed

Type: Broadleaf annual
Size: 6 inches tall, 12 inches wide
Where it grows: Lawn, garden, and landscape areas with rich, moist soil in sun or shade
Appearance: Lush green mats studded with small, star-shape flowers.
Control: Mulch to prevent it in gardens or use a pre-emergence herbicide in early spring; pull plants by hand.
Note: Each plant can produce more than 15,000 seeds.
Fun Facts: Adecoction of the whole plant of Chickweed is taken internally as a post-partum depurative, emmenagogue, galactogogue and circulatory tonic. It is also used to relieve constipation, an infusion of the dried herb is used in coughs and hoarseness, and is beneficial in the treatment of kidney complaints. as an astringent, carminative, demulcent, diuretic, expectorant, laxative, refrigerant, vulnerary. A decoction of the whole plant is taken internally as a post-partum depurative, emmenagogue, galactogogue and circulatory tonic.

Clover Weed

Type: Broadleaf Perennial
Size: 6 to 12 inches tall
Where it grows: While it can grow in many different places, it is typically found in lawns, especially sparse lawns where the competition from grass is weak.
Appearance: The leaves on white clover grow in sets of 3 leaflets. Each leaflet is tear shaped and many have a reddish stripe across it. The flowers on white clover are spiky and white with a brownish green center.
Control: It starts with a healthy lawn. Clover will grow in areas of low nitrogen and where competition from other plants is small, so making sure that your lawn (and flower beds) are well fertilized will not only help desirable grass and plants to grow and keep out white clover, but will also make the soil less friendly to white clover.
Note: In flower beds, clover can be kept at bay by using a thick layer of mulch. This will keep the seeds from germinating.

Corn Speedwell

Type: Broadleaf annual
Size: 3.5″ to 15.7″ high from a taproot.
Where it grows: Overall, light is a major source to their survival and growth. In other words, they can grow in darkness, however they will remain dormant unless they get light.
Appearance: Tiny blue flowers with a white throat; always with 4 petals, Distinctive heart-shaped seed pods, Small rounded leaves no more than 1/2 inch in diameter. Small blue to purple flowers about 10mm across.
Control: The most effective approach is to apply pre-emergence herbicides in the fall to prevent seeds from sprouting.
Note: Speedwell has a fibrous root system and is easily pulled by hand, especially when the soil is moist. It will not re-grow from the roots so hand weeding is effective as long as all of the leaves and stems are removed.

Dandelions

Type: Broadleaf perennial
Size: 4-8″inches tall
Where it grows: They grow best in areas that are sunny and moist.
Appearance: Jagged, with deep lobes, similar in appearance to chicory leaves; Stems are hollow with white juice.
Lawn Weed Control Tip: Dandelion (broadleaf) post-emergent herbicides are growth regulators that mimic hormones in the plant. To work they must be absorbed and moved to the site of activity, usually a growing point in the root or leaf. 
Notes: Seed production varies from 54 to 172 seedsper head and a single plant can produce more than 2000 seeds.
Fun Facts: Dandelion flower has antioxidant properties. Dandelion may also help improve the immune system.Herbalists use dandelion root to detoxify the liver and gallbladder, and dandelion leaves to help kidney function  is chock full of vitamins A, B, C, and D, as well as minerals, such as iron, potassium, and zinc. Dandelion leaves are used to add flavor to salads, sandwiches, and teas.

Henbit

Type: Broadleaf annual
Size: To 12 inches tall and wide
Where it grows: Lawn, landscape, and garden areas in sun or shade
Appearance: Low, creeping plant with scallop-edge leaves and purple flowers.
Control: Mulch to prevent it in gardens or use pre-emergence herbicide in spring; pull plants by hand or treat in lawns with a broadleaf, post-emergence herbicide.
Fun Facts: Henbit can sometimes be confused with Purple Dead Nettle, above, which is also edible. The difference in the two can be seen in the leaves. Henbit has heart-shaped leaves with big scalloped edges that grow along the entire length of the stem. The Purple Dead Nettle (dead in this case means not stinging) has more triangular shaped leaves that grow in a big clumps.

Oxalis

Type: Broadleaf perennial
Size: To 20 inches tall
Where it grows: Sunny or shady landscape, lawn, or garden areas
Appearance: Light green leaves that look like clover and cup-shape yellow flowers in summer and fall
Grass Weed Control Tip: Mulch garden areas in spring to prevent it; pull plants by hand or spray with a post-emergence herbicide in spring or fall.
Note: The leaves are edible in small quantities and have a sharp, sour taste. They can be harmful if eaten in large amounts.

Plantain

Type: Broadleaf perennial
Size: 6″ inches long and 4″ inches tall.
Where it grows: It will grow in sun to shade, and in almost any soil – plantain is very adaptable. Plantain spreads by seeds.
Appearance: low-growing, green plant with oval, ribbed short-stemmed leaves. The leaves form basal rosettes which tend to hug the ground.
Control: The best way to prevent plantains in the lawn is to keep the soil aerated and healthy. Aerate compacted soil and follow a regular schedule of fertilization.
Note: Plantain weeds also contaminate mowers and other equipment used on the lawn. Clean your equipment thoroughly before using it again to prevent the spread of planting lawn weeds.

POA ANNUA

Type: Annual Bluegrass
Size: he stem grows from 6″–10″ high
Where it grows: Moist lawns.
Appearance: all tasseled seed stalk that will typically stand up above the rest of the lawn and becomes visible in late spring or early summer. But, while this seed stalk can be tall, if it is cut short, it can still produce seeds.
Control: pre-emergence herbicide in lawns that will prevent the poa annua seeds from germinating.
Note: The plant will produce several hundred seeds in eight weeks, and the seeds can lay dormant for several years before sprouting.

Prickly Lettuce

Type: Annual Pant Weed
Size: 1-5 Feet Tall
Where it grows: It prefers dry conditions but can be found in moist areas as well.
Appearance: Alternating leaves that clasp the stem. Leaves are deeply notched with spiny margin along the mid-vein of the lower surface at maturity. Blossoms are yellow in color and about 1/3 inch across.
Control: Use a Pre Emergent Herbicide and of course…Pull wild lettuce when the soil is damp and dig down to get all of the tap roots.
Note: A single plant can produce anywhere from 35 to 2,300 flowers, each containing around 20 seeds and adding up to a total of between 700 and 46,000 seeds per plant!

Redstem Filaree

Type: Broadleaf annual
Size: 4″-6″ in height
Where it grows: Redstem Filaree is a common weed on roadsides, fields, and poor quality lawns.
Appearance: Deeply lobed leaves that somewhat resemble a fern. Small, brightly colored five petaled flowers.
Control: Mulch to prevent it in gardens or use pre-emergence herbicide in spring; pull plants by hand or treat in lawns with a broadleaf, post-emergence herbicide.

Small and Large Hop Clover

Type: Broadleaf Winter annual; spreads by reseeding itself; often forms colonies
Size: 12″-14″ High
Where it grows: unmowed areas, such as hillsides or pastures, it can grow more upright,
Appearance: The leaves alternate and consist of three leaflets. The center leaf is on its own petiole. The stems feel a bit woody and are green to reddish (small hop clover) in color.
Control: Mulch to prevent it in gardens or use pre-emergence herbicide in spring; pull plants by hand or treat in lawns with a broadleaf, post-emergence herbicide.

Sow Thistle

Type: Broadleaf Perennial
Size: 1-3 Feet
Where it grows: It is found in gardens, on roadsides, lawns and other disturbed habitats.
Appearance: It has soft green, deeply lobed, spear-like leaves and these leaves have sharp barbs on them.
Control: Improving your soil’s fertility will weaken the Canada thistle and help desired plants grow better and, therefore, make them better able to compete with the Canada thistle. It can be killed by an on contact weed killer.
Note:Its chief use nowadays is as food for rabbits. There is no green food they devour more eagerly, and all keepers of rabbits in hutches should provide them with a plentiful supply.

Wild Garlic

Type: Perennial grass weeds
Size: 8-12″ inches tall
Where it grows: It can be found in many gardens and lawns,
Appearance: Wild onions have flat leaves while wild garlic has round leaves.
Control: Pre emergent and a post emergent. I wish to remove it, dig the clump out of the ground with a spade or a trowel. Throw the entire clump away. Then spray with an on contact killer in the hole.
Notes: The small bulblets are designed to pull away from the mother plant when pulled, which leaves extra bulbs in the ground that will rapidly regrow. 

Wild Onion Weed

Type: Perennial grass weeds
Size: 8-12″ inches tall
Where it grows: It can be found in many gardens and lawns,
Appearance: Wild garlic has flat leaves while wild garlic has round leaves.
Control: Pre emergent and a post emergent. I wish to remove it, dig the clump out of the ground with a spade or a trowel. Throw the entire clump away. Then spray with an on contact killer in the hole.
Notes: Wild garlic can also spread by producing bulblets. These bulblets become new plants, thickening the patch. Frequent mowing will slow the spread, because the plants will not have sufficient time to flower and go to seed.

COMMON SPRING WEEDS

Annual winter weeds germinate in the fall and winter and grow actively in spring. Gardeners are often surprised how quickly these weeds can seemingly pop up overnight in their yards and gardens, being unaware that they may have been growing slowly all winter long. After they flower in spring they die and disappear for the summer only to return in fall or winter when new seeds germinate. We control with a broadleaf  postemergent herbicide applied when the weeds are actively growing in the spring.