What About Those Weeds?

The days are beginning to get shorter and temperatures will hopefully soon start to dip down. Water Expert Denise Hickey and Horticulturalist Patrick Dickinson share helpful information to address those daunting weeds in the latest WFAA Green Segment.

Best Time to Treat Weeds
It may seem confusing at a time when people look forward to a break from yard work as temperatures drop and plants go dormant, but this time of year plants are working on storing up food in preparation for the winter. Herbicide applied now will be pulled in and go down deep to the roots.

It’s important to understand and properly identify different weeds before you begin treatment. A weed is simply an unwanted plant or a plant growing out of place and there are three categories to remember:

  • Broadleaf – like clover
  • Grassy – like crabgrass
  • Sedges – are most commonly called nutsedge

Different Treatments for Each
There are different categories of treatments, both synthetic and organic. The following are types of treatments that will affect the weed categories above, but remember to identify the weed first.

  • Pre-Emergent – Prevents weeds, does not treat them
  • Post-Emergent – Treats specific weeds
  • Non-Selective – Doesn’t matter what you apply it to, will try and kill it

It is vital to know what to use, and what plant it will be used on. Any treatment not utilized could contaminate the soil and eventually make its way to our shared water sources. Many of these herbicides end up in our storm drain which flows to area waterways. A good option is to spot treat and not apply products across the entire lawn. Becoming an educated consumer when it comes to weed treatments helps protect yourself, your family and our community.

Fall and Winter Weed Value
There can be value in some fall and winter weeds, especially going into winter and spring. Bees like plants such as Dandelions and Henbit, but not all of your neighbors may. If you choose to keep these, try to manage them so they stay out of your neighboring yards to prevent excessive treatment with the herbicides.

With the proper knowledge and treatment, landscapes and lawns can achieve beauty without harming the environment. You can learn more at WaterUniversity.Tamu.Edu and make sure to sign up for weekly tips on watering at WaterMyYard.org.