Time to Control Winter Weeds

— Written By and last updated by

The lawn is sleeping now but that doesn’t mean there aren’t things going on out there. Winter weeds are up and growing, just biding their time until it’s time to bloom and make seeds in late winter and early spring.

Winter weeds are sneaky and they can grow, mostly undetected throughout the winter. Until they start flowering, you don’t even know they’re there. By then, they are ready to disperse seed all over the lawn so that the cycle can continue.

Winter annual weeds are what we are talking about this time of year. The seeds lie dormant throughout the summer and when the cooling temps of fall arrive these winter pests get the signal to germinate. At first they are quite small and inconspicuous and this is when they can be controlled with the most success. The homeowner must be vigilant about pulling the sprayer out during the winter to control these weeds. If left to flower and make seeds, the homeowner can expect a repeat performance next year.

Some of our most common weeds are winter annuals: chickweed, henbit, hairy bittercress and red dead nettle, just to name a few. There are numerous selective herbicides available that will do a good job but you must get the timing right or you’ll just be wasting your time. Herbicides may be sprayed when the temperature is at least 55 degrees. Spray winter annuals 2-3 times from mid fall through late winter before they disperse seeds. Also, make sure you read the label first to insure you are using the best product for your particular weeds.

This is prime-time for winter annual control. We do have many 55 degree days in December, January and February so take advantage of those days. If you’re really serious about getting your lawn weeds under control, take action now!