Arizona’s desert climate is not immune to lawn weeds. The state is home to many native lawn weeds that can quickly take over a landscape. It’s important to identify the weed correctly before pulling it out or reaching for a herbicide. One of the best ways to do this is to get a grass-weed field guide with pictures. This will help you ensure you’re dealing with the right weed and using the correct treatment method. Below is a list of the most common weeds that could pop up on your lawn and how to identify them.
Henbit (Lamium amplexicaule) is a winter annual plant in the mint family. This pesky weed is commonly found in lawns, gardens, and other disturbed areas. It is a prolific seed producer, and its seeds can remain viable in the soil for several years. Henbit can be difficult to control as a single henbit plant can produce up to 2,000 seeds, It can be managed by hand-pulling, mowing, or using herbicides.
Henbit is edible when young. The leaves, flowers, and stems can be eaten raw or cooked. Henbit has a faint earthy aroma and a slightly bitter taste. It is a good source of vitamins A and C.
Here are some of the identifying features of henbit:
Bindweed is a perennial climbing vine that is native to Europe and Asia, but it has been introduced to many other parts of the world as it can thrive in a number of climates, including the dry heat of Arizona. It is a member of the morning glory family (Convolvulaceae) and is closely related to morning glories and sweet potatoes.
Bindweed is a vigorous grower and can quickly take over an area, making it difficult to control and classifying it as a noxious weed. It spreads by seed and by underground rhizomes. The seeds can remain viable in the soil for many years.
Here are some ways to identify bindweef:
Dandelions are flowering plants in the genus Taraxacum, and are probably the most common lawn weed in Arizona and the rest of the country. They can grow in various habitats and soil types but prefer moist and fertile soils. Dandelions are invasive, meaning they can quickly outcompete other plants. For this reason, it is important to control them.
There are a few ways to control dandelions. Hand-pulling is the most effective method, but it can be time-consuming. You can also use herbicides, but be sure to follow the label directions carefully. Regular mowing can also help to control dandelions.
Fortunately, they are the most easily identifiable of common weeds. Look for these features:
Despite being a weed, dandelions also have some benefits. They are a good source of nectar and pollen for bees and other insects. The flowers can also be used in recipes as a sweetener.
Here are some additional details about dandelions:
Chickweed (Stellaria media) is a hardy, low-growing, annual plant, native to Europe and Asia but commonly found in Arizona. Chickweed is common in lawns, gardens, and other disturbed areas.
Though considered a pesky weed, chickweed is edible and can be eaten raw or cooked. It has a mild, slightly bitter taste. Chickweed is a good source of vitamins A and C and minerals such as potassium and calcium.
Chickweed has also been used medicinally for centuries. It has been used to treat a variety of conditions, including coughs, colds, and skin problems.
Here are some of the identifying features of chickweed:
If you see a plant with these features, it is likely chickweed.
Bittercress (Cardamine hirsuta) is a small, annual plant in the mustard family (Brassicaceae). It is native to Europe, Asia, and North America and is now naturalized in many other parts of the world, including Arizona. Bittercress is a common nuisance weed in lawns, gardens, and other disturbed areas, often outcompeting other plants for nutrients and severely reducing biodiversity.
It is a prolific seed producer, and its seeds can remain viable in the soil for several years. This means it can quickly spread and become a problem in gardens and other areas. Its small white flowers can be considered unsightly, and its seeds can be spread by wind and water.
If you have bittercress in your garden, there are a few ways to control it. You can hand-pull the plants, mow them, or use a herbicide. However, it is important to be careful when using herbicides, as they can also harm native plants.
Here are some ways to identify bittercress:
Creeping Charlie, also known as ground ivy or gill-on-the-ground, is a perennial weed in the mint family (Lamiaceae) and another common lawn weed in Arizona. It is an invasive weed that thrives in moist and shady environments. If left unchecked, it can quickly take over lawns and gardens.
Creeping Charlie is difficult to control because it can tolerate most herbicides. A combination of methods is often necessary to get rid of it. These methods may include hand-pulling, mowing, and using a herbicide.
Despite its invasive nature, creeping Charlie has some benefits. It is edible and can be used as a garnish or in salads. It also has some medicinal properties and can treat colds and coughs.
Here are some ways to identify this perennial weed:
Crabgrass is a member of the grass family (Poaceae) and a common lawn weed found in Arizona and other parts of the world. It is also known as hairy finger grass or barnyard grass. It has a creeping growth habit, spreading by underground stems. Crabgrass is an annual plant that grows and dies in one season. The seeds germinate in late spring or early summer when the temperatures are about 55-60 degrees Fahrenheit.
Crabgrass is a problem in gardens and lawns because it tolerates dry and poor soil conditions. It can also resist herbicides, making it difficult to control. This makes it a challenge to keep lawns healthy and well-maintained.
Here are some distinct features used to identify crabgrass:
Black medic (Medicago lupulina) is a common lawn weed in Arizona and other parts of the world. It is an annual plant that grows and dies in one season. The seeds germinate in the spring and summer, and the plant can grow up to 12 inches tall.
Black medic is a member of the pea family (Fabaceae). It has compound leaves with three leaflets, and the flowers are yellow. The plant produces small, black seeds that can remain viable in the soil for many years.
Black medic is an invasive weed that can quickly spread. It is tolerant of a variety of soil conditions, and it can grow in both sunny and shady areas. Black medic can compete with turfgrass for water and nutrients and crowd out other plants.
There are a few ways to control black medic. One method is to mow your lawn regularly. This will help to keep black medic from getting too established. You can also use herbicides, but be sure to choose a safe herbicide for your lawn. Hand-pulling black medic is the most effective way to control it, but it can be time-consuming.
If you have black medic in your lawn, taking steps to control it is important. Black medic can quickly become a problem and be difficult to eliminate.
Here are ways you can identify Black Medic:
White clover (Trifolium repens) is a common legume found throughout the world and is considered a common lawn weed in Arizona. It is a perennial plant, which means it can live for many years. The plant is known for its rapid growth and spreading habit. White clover can be found in a variety of habitats, including lawns, gardens, meadows, and grasslands.
The leaves of white clover are trifoliate, meaning they have three leaflets. The flowers are white and bloom in the spring and summer. White clover is a good source of nectar for bees and other pollinators.
White clover is also a nitrogen-fixing plant. This means that it can take nitrogen from the air and convert it into a form that plants can use. This can help to improve soil fertility.
While white clover can be a nuisance in lawns, it also has some benefits. If you are not concerned about the aesthetics of your lawn, you may want to consider leaving white clover in place. It can help to improve the health of your soil and provide a valuable food source for pollinators.
Here are ways to identify white clover:
Purslane (Portulaca oleracea), also known as pigweed, little hogweed, or patience dock, is a common weed in Arizona. It is a succulent plant native to Europe, Asia, and Africa. Found primarily in warm, sunny environments, purslane can grow in various soils, including gardens, lawns, open fields, and even between concrete.
Purslane is a nuisance weed because it can quickly spread and crowd out other plants. However, it is also edible and can be used in salads and soups. Purslane is a good source of vitamins E, C, and magnesium and is also rich in Omega-3 fatty acids.
The purslane seeds can remain viable in the soil for several years, even without favorable growing conditions. This is why purslane is considered to be a weed.
Here is a list of features to look for to identify Purslane:
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