Easy Guide To Common Weeds (White flower)

White Flowering Weeds

WHITE CLOVER Trifolium repens

Type: Perennial Broadleaf

Height: Up to 18 cm (7in)

Flowers: June to September

What’s it like?

An easily recognisable weed found in lawns. Also known as Dutch Clover. This weed prefers a good soil condition often in a shady and damp area. Leaves of this weed are known by its three leaves, occasionally found as four (Known to be lucky for some). Inches Each leaflet is 0.6 – 1.2 cm (1/4 to 1/2 inch) long. Generally white in appearance, the white flowers are often found above the leaves, and can bloom for the majority of the year.

Why is it a problem for your lawn?

It self-seeds and can colonise quickly throughout your lawn, choking out grass with its creeping runners that travel along the surface very quickly.

Control

Getting rid of White clover starts with having a healthy strong grass lawn. Clover will grow in areas of low nitrogen and where a competition of other plants is low, so it is well advised to fertilise your lawn which will help your desirable grasses to flourish and keep white clover at bay. You can attempt to hand weed this plant, but you must make sure the root system is fully removed otherwise it will simply grow again. For larger more troublesome areas you should use an Herbicide, but again, if the root system is not reached it will grow back.


BINDWEED Calystegia sepium

Type: Perennial Broadleaf

Height: Can grow up to 1.9 metres (6ft) long

Flowering May through to September

What’s it like?

Bindweed or Bellbind is also mistaken for Morning Glory with its pure white flowers resembling a trumpet. A familiar site amongst UK gardens and lawns. It will choke other plants by wrapping its stem around them and smothering them. It is mostly problematic in long grasses. Very difficult to remove as they have a very strong root system. If broken they are easily able to regenerate.

Why is it a problem for your lawn?

This weed spreads mainly from sections of its underground stem (rhizome) or root. They can reach up to 16 feet (5m) deep and will spread very quickly. This invasive weed can be brought into your garden lawn amongst other plant roots and manure. They will stay in the soil for many years.

Control

Due to the strength and length of their root system, this weed is very difficult to remove completely. Persistent digging out may prove to be futile as often you will unwittingly leave part of the root system in the soil. If you use a chemical control (Herbicide) containing glyphosate it will be applied to the foliage where it will be translocated throughout the weed. It is important to avoid spray drift and to have good leaf coverage so you get as much of the chemical absorbed as possible. This is more effective when bindweed is flowering. It is important to check the manufacturer’s instructions so you avoid killing off delicate plants nearby. Regular mowing and the use of lawn weed killers will help keep them under control and will eventually eliminate this nuisance weed.


 YARROW Achillea millefolium

Type: Perennial Broadleaf

Height: Up to 1 meter (3ft)

Flowering: Mid May through to July


What’s it like?

A common weed appearing on all types of lawns. It spreads by creeping stems, rooting at intervals. It has deep fibrous roots and can withstand dry conditions. The leaves resemble the fern, making it easy to identify. Yarrow is a mat-forming rhizomatous plant with aromatic grey/green foliage resembling a fern. Producing white or pinkish/white flowers, it will regrow vigorously from the underground creeping stems and seeds. It will take over lawn grasses.

Why is it a problem for your lawn?

Yarrow thrives in chalky soils where plant nutrients are low and is very drought resistant. When your lawn’s grass is weakened by long periods of drought together with poor nutrient levels, Yarrow will thrive and very quickly establish itself in your lawn.

Control

Once Yarrow has established itself in your lawn it is very difficult to control. By applying a top-dressing in early Spring you will encourage vigorous grass growth making it more difficult for Yarrow to thrive. Feeding your lawn when your grass is growing with a quality fertiliser in Spring and Summer will also help. However, if your lawn is drought stressed do NOT feed it. Regular lawn mowing and lightly raking it will also help to weaken the weed and strengthen your grass. Yarrow is quite resistant to many selective weed killers that can be found in DIY garden centres. However, if you do choose to apply weed killers yourself then repeated applications of products can be effective.


MOUSE EAR CHICKWEED Cerastium

Type: Perennial Broadleaf

Height: 5-20 cm (2 – 8 inches)

Flowering: April through to November

What’s it like?

Mouse-ear Chickweed is a very common weed found in lawns. It spreads very quickly forming a dense mat on your lawn. The leaves are small oval and dark green, fleshy and covered with fine hairs. They will thrive in all types of soil conditions and will tolerate a close mowing. The white flowers appear in clusters and can be seen as early as April and last until November. Each flower produces 5 petals which are deeply lobed which gives the appearance of 10 petals.

Why is it a problem for your lawn?

As this weed can tolerate a close mowing it will be a nuisance on fine luxurious lawns. It has a shallow fibrous root system that will spread by its nodes and by seed.

Control

Mouse-ear chickweed is a difficult weed to control by hand because of its growth characteristics so is really only practical for a few plants. Like most lawn weeds they can be discouraged by keeping your lawn in a healthy condition with good maintenance practices. In some cases reducing the shade may help reduce the problem. If the problem is severe then a chemical control will be needed. As Mouse-ear Chickweed is susceptible to a wide range of chemicals, most products can be used to control this weed. One application is usually enough to kill Mouse-ear chickweed. Aim to treat Mouse-ear chickweed during the first signs of the weed and when growth is strong for the best results. Once the weed has been removed or controlled the bare area can be filled with a mixture of suitable soil and grass seed to aid recovery.


DAISY Bellis perennis

Type: Perennial Broadleaf

Height: 10 -16 cm (4 – 6 inches)

Flowering: May through to October

What’s it like?

One of the most recognisable lawn weeds. This weed is also known as English Daisy, Bruisewort, and Lawn Daisy. This perennial weed has a yellow centre surrounded by white petals and fleshy round leaves. It grows approximately 3-inch. They will appear from Spring to Early Autumn. Resilient to regular mowing, often needing a daisy grubber for quickly lifting and removing the weeds. It is resilient to most soil conditions. It can survive in closely mown lawns due to its round leaves which grow very close to the ground.

Why is it a problem for your lawn?

This weed will tolerate close mowing as it grows close to the ground. They should be removed to enable you to get a lush green lawn that is even in colour and appearance. It spreads by forming mats of foliage and is able to colonise new areas by producing seed.

Control

small amounts of these weeds can be removed with a daisy grubber. If however, you have a larger infestation you will need to use a herbicide solution. If it is possible you should only spot treat the area so as not to kill other delicate plants. A repeat treatment may be necessary approximately six weeks after the first treatment as the daisy can be a difficult weed to kill in one single treatment. After the weed has been removed you may need to repair the bare area with an over-seed and top dressing to help it recover.



COMMON NETTLE     (Stinging) Urtica dioica L.

Type: Perennial Broadleaf

Height: Can grow 2 to 4 metres

Flowering: May to September

What’s it like?

The common nettle is a leafy plant that is found in most regions of the world. The Nettle plant grows erect on stems. These are up to 120 cm tall and covered with stinging hairs on the leaves with short bristly hairs on the stems. It can grow approximately 2 to 4 metres high and will produce pointy leaves that eventually turn into white to yellowish flowers. Nettles will sting when the skin touches the hairs and bristles of the plant. Large yellow rhizomes enable the plant to spread and reproduce quickly.

Reproducing themselves from seed and rhizomes that form underground stems that extend out and grow, producing new shoots, enabling the nettle plants to spread.

The flowers formed in drooping panicles, growing in groups from the upper leaf. The species name dioica means ‘two houses’ because the plant usually contains either female or male flowers.

Why is it a problem for your lawn?

Nettles can grow on most soil types and can tolerate drier soils. This plant can quickly establish itself on waste and neglected grounds.  Nettles have large yellow rhizomes that enable the plant to spread and reproduce quickly.

Control

Nettles can be controlled with a regular cutting back which will weaken the plant until it eventually dies. You can remove the entire plant ensuring all roots and rhizomes are completely dug out and moved away from the area.

For chemical control, you can apply a non-selective herbicide. These chemicals are best used when the weeds are actively growing, usually between April-October.
These herbicides are usually applied as a liquid using watering cans or sprayers.

MAYWEED Anthemis cotula

Type: Annual Broadleaf

Height: 30 – 60 cm  (1 – 2ft)

Flowering: June through October

What’s it like?

A common weed that flowers annually. Often found in open areas such as lawns, fields and ditches. The Mayweed’s flower is very similar to the daisy, but the foliage is very different, more like the Chamomile plant or sometimes mistaken for the Fennel plant. Mayweed foliage is quite noxious and can cause skin irritations. The leaves are fern-like and have an unpleasant odour and have an acrid taste.

Why is it a problem for your lawn?

Although the flowers are very nice to look at, this weed should never be encouraged to grow on your lawn. If allowed to thrive it can be hard to get rid of. It can cause skin irritations and can be toxic to dogs and cats.

Control

Just like many other fast-growing weeds, this plant has to be carefully controlled. Proper preventative lawn maintenance is required to keep on top of this weed. If you only have a small number of these plants in your lawn, they can be removed by hand with a daisy grubber. Gloves should be worn when removing this weed as it can cause skin irritation and has a very strong smell. A larger infestation will need a Chemical (herbicide) applied.  Remember to dispose of this weed in areas that are not accessible to animals. If Mayweed has taken over large areas of your lawn, then it is advisable to contact a professional lawn care company to handle it remove it. Bare areas will need an over-seed and top dressing to help your lawn recover


PEARLWORT

(Sagina procumbens)

Type: Perennial

Height: :  4 – 10 cm high (2 – 4 in)

Flowering: April to September

What’s it like?

Pearlwort is a perennial mat-forming plant with small white flowers and narrow leaves. Pearlwort will populate most soil conditions and seeds very quickly. It is often mistaken for Moss in lawns and it likes moist and wet conditions. It produces fine-like roots that can invade most soil conditions. Its small white flowers are found on long stems near the tips of the branches of this weed.

Why is it a problem for your lawn?

An invasive weed which is a problem for close cut lawns. Pearlwort produces a high amount of small seeds, which spread by mowing and foot traffic. It can become a nuisance weed when allowed to spread and establish itself in your lawn’s turf.

Control

Keep your grass swards dense and healthy to prevent Pearlwort from establishing itself in your lawn. Good lawn care maintenance such as Aeration, regular mowing, fertilisation will ensure your grass sward is dense. Best to eradicate as quickly as possible it can be very difficult to control once established. It can be sprayed with a weed killer that is absorbed through the leaves of this plant, this way the active ingredient of the weed killer will work its way through the cells and down to the root, to kill it off. It may need repeat spraying in 6 – 8 weeks.


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