Question of the Week – Number 2: March 14, 2019

“Is this dollarweed? What can I use to control it?

Dichondra is sneaking its way through a Texas lawn. It seems harmless at first, but you soon realize that’s not the case.

I’ve been asked this repeatedly in the past couple of weeks. This is dichondra. It’s actually a very pretty little weed, but it’s also obnoxious when it starts to take over your lawn as you see happening in the photo.

Dollarweed, by comparison, has much larger leaves – the size of silver dollars. They are much thicker and glossier, and because of that, dollarweed is even harder to control.

Dichondra, with its nickel-sized leaves, is on the left. Dollarweed, with its much larger leaves, is on the right.

The control for both weeds…
Dollarweed tends to grow in really wet soils, so improving the drainage may help reduce its population. However, you’re probably going to have to resort to herbicide sprays to eliminate each of these invaders.

You’ll want to use a broadleafed weedkiller containing 2,4-D. Most companies offer products containing a blend of three different herbicides sold under the name of Trimec. Two of those three will be active in the soil, which means you’ll have to be careful in using them around tree roots.

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A few products, however, contain only 2,4-D. It is not active in the soil, so it can be sprayed beneath trees when used according to label directions.

Whichever weedkiller you choose, you may want to use a pump sprayer so you can apply the herbicide with fairly fine droplets. Include one drop of liquid dishwashing detergent with each gallon of spray to help hold the mix on the surface of the leaves.

These sprays are not really fast in killing the weeds. You can expect to wait a few days to a week or more to see real results. And you may even need to spray again 2-3 weeks later for total control, but the sprays will do the job.

Posted by Neil Sperry
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