Lawn work is hard work, and the last thing you want is weeds to come and mess up your hard work. But knowledge is power and the sooner you know your enemy, the sooner you can kill those weeds. Here are some of the worst weeds in Minneapolis — and how to get rid of them.
Don’t let the wild violet’s charming name fool you! The wild violet (pictured above) grows quickly and aggressively and is resistant to a lot of weedkillers. You’ll usually find it in the shade, and it likes moist soil. It is a pretty plant, with waxy, heart-shaped leaves and small lavender-blue blossoms, but if you find it in your yard, you’ll probably get over its looks pretty quickly as it spreads. It is a perennial broadleaf weed with a long taproot, so you’ll want a weedkiller that targets broadleaf weeds, killing them but leaving your grass unharmed.
The black medic is an annual clover and grows well in compacted soil. You’ll be able to tell black medic from other clovers because its pom-pom flowers are yellow. This weed often sprouts up next to sidewalks or other areas that are compacted by traffic. Getting rid of it may be as simple as aerating your lawn. It’s also easy to hand-weed, because black medic is a central-growing plant, making it easier to get at the root than other weeds. Chemical weed killers also do a good job of eradicating this plant.
Creeping charlie, aka ground ivy, is unmistakable. This weed has round, coin-shaped leaves with frilly edges. Minneapolis is not alone in the fight against creeping charlie; this is an invasive species that has made itself at home throughout much of the continental United States. If you catch it early, in the spring, you can pull it by hand — but make sure you get all of it because this is a fast and easy grower. If you catch it later, you might be better off putting down a fall herbicide in your lawn to completely eradicate creeping charlie.
The dandelion has some uses — its leaves can be added to your salad and its central root can be dried and made into a tea. But for most people, the dandelion and its cheery yellow blossoms are a common weed, and one that can be hard to eliminate. If any part of the dandelion, especially that thick central taproot, is left behind, the plant can grow back and proliferate. Experts recommend pulling what you can, and feeding your lawn to make it thick enough to crowd out dandelions and other broadleaf weeds. Applying a pre-emergent weed killer in the spring will help keep dandelions to a minimum as well.
There are dozens of weeds that will try to take advantage of Minneapolis’ sweet but all-too-short summer. This lists off some of the worst of them, so you can eradicate them quickly — and spend more time in your yard relaxing, instead of working.
Looking for more lawn care information and tips? Be sure to check our Minneapolis lawn care page.
Main image credit: Liz West, Flickr