How To Kill Virginia Button Weed?

How To Kill Virginia Button Weed
Virginia buttonweed (Diodia virginiana) is a mat-forming perennial that flourishes on lawns when the soil is poorly drained or extremely damp. The foliage is lance-shaped and dark green. Close-up of picture 1604118 of a Bugwood. John Ruter, Georgia University, Bugwood.org Virginia buttonweed (Diodia virginiana) is a difficult-to-control turfgrass weed that has become common in South Carolina lawns in recent years.

  1. This perennial plant is firmly established, produces belowground and aboveground blooms, and spreads via rhizomes (underground stems), as well as by stem fragments cut and dispersed during mowing or string clipping.
  2. Virginia buttonweed becomes more problematic and flourishes on lawns that are poorly drained or excessively wet due to high rainfall or frequent watering.

Its glossy, dark-green, lance-shaped leaves are placed oppositely on the stems and lack petioles (stalks that attach leaves to stems). Due to a viral infection, leaves may become yellow-green by late summer. The blooms are tubular, white, and have four petals grouped in the shape of a four-pointed star.

  1. This mat-forming plant, if left unchecked, can suffocate turfgrass.
  2. The blooms of Virginia buttonweed (Diodia virginiana) are four-petaled, tubular, and white.
  3. Close-up of picture 5428015 of a Bugwood.
  4. Wallace, Rebekah D., University of Georgia, Bugwood.org Many Virginia buttonweed (Diodia virginiana) leaves will turn mottled and yellow-green in late summer due to an infection by an unknown virus.2020 Joey Williamson HGIC, Clemson Extension Cultural Controls: Limit the growth of Virginia buttonweed by keeping a healthy, thick turfgrass.

Water the lawn deeply but seldom to permit the surface soils to dry out between waterings, so enhancing the root depth of the turfgrass. Please check HGIC 1207, Watering Lawns, for further information about irrigation. In addition, address any drainage issues to prevent damp spots in the grass.

  1. Aerate the grass with cores to enhance internal soil drainage, minimize soil compaction, and promote root development.
  2. Please visit HGIC 1200, Aerating Lawns, for further information on core aeration.
  3. Apply fertilizer and lime based on the findings of a soil test.
  4. Specific fertilizer and lime recommendations are made for turfgrass.

Refer to HGIC 1652, Soil Testing, for sampling instructions. Mow the lawn at the appropriate height for the kind of turfgrass. Extremely low mowing strains the turfgrass and leads the mower to cut and scatter weed stem bits. The Virginia buttonweed can endure mowing as short as 12 inch, and stem fragments can readily root in damp environments.

A lawn maintained at the proper height fosters the establishment of thick turfgrass and aids in shading out Virginia buttonweed. Please refer to HGIC 1205: Mowing Lawns for proper cutting heights. Consider dethatching the grass at the right time if the thatch layer is greater than half an inch. Please refer to HGIC 2360, Controlling Thatch in Lawns, for further information on dethatching.

The ineffectiveness of hand-pulling Virginia buttonweed as a control method is due to the fact that roots and stem fragments can regrow. Chemical Management: Two years of post-emergence herbicide treatments may be needed to control Virginia buttonweed in a lawn.

Start herbicide sprays in the spring, when plants are emerging from dormancy and growing delicate new growth, for optimal control. The application of herbicides in the spring helps regulate the young seedlings developing in the lawn and prevents the formation of dense growth mats that can suffocate the grass by late summer.

In late summer, older Virginia buttonweed plants are significantly more resistant to selective herbicides, reducing the effectiveness of control measures. In the spring, as the Virginia buttonweed begins to green up, use metsulfuron (Quali-Pro MSM) or Celsius WG sprays.

Apply a second coat between four and six weeks later. These items are safe to use when the temperature exceeds 85 degrees Fahrenheit. In contrast, products containing 2,4-D may harm centipedegrass or St. Augustinegrass at temperatures exceeding 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Metsulfuron (as the only component in a product such as MSM) or Celsius WG can be sprayed on warm-season turfgrass weeds throughout the period of spring green-up.

Celsius WG delivers good to outstanding control of Virginia buttonweed, whereas metsulfuron provides just adequate control. Blindside Herbicide WDG includes metsulfuron and sulfentrazone and may be more effective than metsulfuron alone at controlling Virginia buttonweed.

Submit a second application 21 days following the previous submission. The components of Fahrenheit Herbicide are metsulfuron and dicamba. Repeat the treatment every four to six weeks to maintain control. If temperatures will reach 85 degrees Fahrenheit, do not apply Fahrenheit units. Metsulfuron products and Celsius WG should not be used to a tall fescue grass.

Under the dripline of trees and plants, do not use metsulfuron compounds. Read all warnings and limits on the label. On bermudagrass, centipedegrass, zoysiagrass, St. Augustinegrass, and tall fescue, use 3-way herbicides comprising 2,4-D, dicamba, mecoprop, and carfentrazone.

  1. However, these treatments should not be used until the warm-season turfgrasses have completely greened up in late April.
  2. The 2,4-D, dicamba, mecoprop, and carfentrazone combination herbicides will suppress and destroy the seedlings of Virginia buttonweed in the spring.
  3. If the day temperature exceeds ninety degrees, do not apply pesticides by spray.

After 30 days, a second application can be done with the majority of items. Using a 3% glyphosate spray, treat huge areas of Virginia buttonweed with little to no turfgrass. Read the instructions on the package of goods containing 41 percent glyphosate for combining in a pump-up sprayer.

  1. Re-sod the area a few weeks after the previous application of glyphosate, once the Virginia buttonweed has been eradicated.
  2. See Table 1 for a list of manufacturers and products, as well as more information on the usage of metsulfuron, Celsius WG, glyphosate, and broadleaf weed herbicide combinations.

Table 1: Examples of post-emergence herbicides for the management of Virginia buttonweed in residential turfgrass.

Brands & Specific Products Herbicide Active Ingredient % Active Ingredient in Product Site Labeled for Use
Ferti-lome Weed Free Zone Concentrate; & RTS 1 2,4-D Mecoprop (MCPP) Dicamba Carfentrazone 10.49 2.66 0.67 0.54 Tall Fescue Bermudagrass & Zoysiagrass Centipedegrass & St. AugustinegrassAn application may be repeated once after 30 days.
Ferti-lome Weed Free Zone RTU 2 MCPA Mecoprop (MCPP) Dicamba Carfentrazone 0.3370 0.0660 0.0180 0.0023
Bonide Weed Beater Ultra Concentrate MCPA Mecoprop (MCPP) Dicamba Carfentrazone 31.55 6.16 1.65 0.22
Gordon’s Trimec Speed Lawn Weed Killer Concentrate & RTS 2 2,4-D Mecoprop Dicamba Carfentrazone 4.01 0.49 0.27 0.16
Ortho WeedClear Lawn Weed Killer Concentrate; & RTS 2 Concentrate 2 2,4-D Mecoprop Dicamba Carfentrazone 4.01 0.49 0.27 0.16
Celsius WG Herbicide 3 Thiencarbazone Iodosulfuron Dicamba 8.7 1.9 57.4 Bermudagrass Zoysiagrass Centipedegrass & St. Augustinegrass 4
Quali-Pro MSM Turf Herbicide 5 (for professional use) Metsulfuron 60.0 Bermudagrass Zoysiagrass Centipedegrass & St. Augustinegrass
Blindside Herbicide WDG 5 (for professional use) Metsulfurone Sulfentrazone 6.0 60.0 Bermudagrass Zoysiagrass Centipedegrass & St. Augustinegrass
Quali-Pro Fahrenheit Herbicide 5 (for professional use) Metsulfuron Dicamba 5.0 33.0 Bermudagrass Zoysiagrass Centipedegrass & St. Augustinegrass
Ace Concentrate Weed & Grass Killer Glyphosate 41% (most brands) For use within the lawn as a spot spray to kill large patches of Virginia buttonweed. Then re-sod or re-seed these areas after Virginia buttonweed is dead (a couple of weeks later).
Bonide Kleenup Grass & Weed Killer Concentrate; & RTU2
Weed Killer Concentrate; & RTU2
Eliminator Weed & Grass Killer Super Concentrate
Gordon’s Groundwork Concentrate 50% Super Weed & Grass Killer
Hi-Yield Super Concentrate Killzall Weed & Grass Killer
Knockout Weed & Grass Killer Super Concentrate
Martin’s Eraser Systemic Weed & Grass Killer
Monterey Remuda Full Strength 41% Glyphosate
Quick Kill Grass & Weed Killer
Roundup Original Concentrate
Roundup Pro Herbicide
Southern States Grass & Weed Killer Concentrate II
Tiger Brand Quick Kill Concentrate
Total Kill Pro Weed & Grass Killer Herbicide
Ultra Kill Weed & Grass Killer Concentrate
Zep Enforcer Weed Defeat Concentrate
1 RTS: Ready-to-Spray (hose-end sprayer) 2 RTU: Ready-to-Use (pre-mixed spray bottle) 3 This mix of active ingredients requires the addition of 0.25% by volume (2 teaspoons per gallon of water) of a non-ionic surfactant (such as Hi-Yield Spreader Sticker, Southern Ag Surfactant for Herbicides, or Bonide Turbo Spreader Sticker). This is a wetter-sticker agent to aid in weed control. Repeat Celsius WG application in 4 to 6 weeks for the best control.4 Spot treatments of Celsius WG to St. Augustinegrass at temperatures above 90 degrees may cause temporary growth regulation. Celsius WP is not for use on fescue lawns.5 Do not apply products containing metsulfuron to turfgrass that is less than one year old. Do not apply beneath the dripline of trees and shrubs. Note: Do not apply any post-emergence herbicides, except Celsius WG Herbicide, to lawns during the spring green-up of turfgrass. For other products, wait until the turfgrass is fully green in late spring. Follow all product label directions for mixing and safe use.
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Each year, pesticides are updated. Joey Williamson made the last modifications on February 21. Original publication date: 02/20 If this paper does not address your questions, please contact the HGIC at [email protected] or 1-888-656-9986.

How do you eradicate buttonweed?

Treatment – Before applying any herbicide, be sure to don the appropriate PPE for your protection (gloves, glasses, mask). Due of its ability to spread by seeds and rhizomes, it is not possible to eradicate virginia buttonweed by hand. Utilizing a post-emergence herbicide and spot-spraying it is preferable than utilizing a blanket application, which might harm the desirable grass.

  • Our top pick is a broadleaf weed killer, such as msm turf herbicide, which is a cost-effective broadleaf weed control alternative.
  • If you intend to treat Virginia buttonweed on a broad basis, we suggest Fahrenheit Herbicide.
  • This water-soluble granule gives a wider range of control options for virginia buttonweed since it may be sprayed at different rates and used to treat acres of land.

Additionally, Fahrenheit is exclusively labeled for use on warm-season grasses, which is appropriate because virginia buttonweed is a warm-season broadleaf weed. Step 1: Mix Herbicide and Apply It To The Area To Be Treated Msm Turf Herbicide is a premium granular product that treats 43,560 square feet (1 acre).

  1. Apply between 0.5 and 1 fluid ounces per acre.
  2. Input the proper amount of msm grass herbicide into the sprayer, followed by water, after calculating the square footage of your yard.
  3. Fahrenheit is used at a rate of 6 to 12 ounces per 20 to 80 gallons of water per acre for broadcast applications.
  4. Fahrenheit is used at a rate of 0.2 ounces of product to 1 gallon of water per 1,000 square feet for basic spot treatments.

To mix, fill your sprayer halfway with water, add the calculated amount of product, and then fill the sprayer with water until it reaches its maximum capacity. Shake the sprayer to ensure a thorough mixture, and pump to produce a low-pressure spray. Lightly spray your herbicide solution on established virginia buttonweed.

  • Use a tiny spray with a fan nozzle to apply a uniform coating.
  • Spray on calm days with low wind speeds to reduce drift.
  • It is recommended to apply products while the temperature is below 85 degrees, as temperatures above 85 degrees may harm the grass you desire to preserve.
  • Expect your grass to yellow following treatment.

It is just transitory, and your grass will quickly recover. Step 2 – Subsequent Application Due to its large root system, Virginia Buttonweed can be difficult to eradicate entirely; thus, multiple sprays may be required. Check back in seven to ten days and reapply until all of the plants have perished.

Doveweed is a mat-forming, invasive perennial weed that loves soil that is very damp. Detail of Bugwood Photo 1391179. John D. Byrd, University of Mississippi State, Bugwood.org On recent years, doveweed (Murdannia nudiflora) has become a problematic weed in residential lawns.

  • It is an annual summer weed whose seeds germinate in late spring when soil temperatures reach 65 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • The leaves of doveweed are thick, glossy, and up to four inches long with parallel veins.
  • Doveweed is typically ignored on St.
  • Augustinegrass and centipedegrass lawns due to its tall, grass-like leaves.

Doveweed grows vigorously over the grass by thick, creeping stems known as stolons. Doveweed is a member of the Commelinaceae (dayflower) family and is closely related to the invasive spiderworts (Tradescantia species) and the extremely invasive Benghal dayflower ( Commelina benghalensis ).

  1. Doveweed’s blooms consist of three lavender petals and three green sepals.
  2. Close-up of picture 5568065 of a Bugwood.
  3. Wallace, Rebekah D., University of Georgia, Bugwood.org Doveweed flourishes in excessively wet soils due to inadequate soil drainage, frequent rainfall, or irrigation.
  4. In these moist settings, homeowners may not recognize the presence of this grass-like plant until vast swaths of turfgrass have been buried.

In the summer, doveweed produces tiny, three-petaled, lavender flowers that make the grass more conspicuous while in bloom. After flowering, seeds are generated in tiny green capsules around 3/16 inches in diameter. Prior to germination, doveweed seeds can stay viable for several years in the soil.

  1. Cultural Controls: Limit the growth of doveweed by keeping a healthy and robust turfgrass.
  2. Allow the surface soils to dry out between waterings by watering the lawn strongly but rarely.
  3. This will increase the root depth of the turfgrass and inhibit the spread of the doveweed.
  4. Please check HGIC 1207, Watering Lawns, for further information about irrigation.
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In addition, address any drainage issues to prevent damp spots in the grass. Aerate the grass with cores to enhance internal soil drainage, minimize soil compaction, and promote root development. Please visit HGIC 1200, Aerating Lawns, for further information on core aeration.

  • Follow the recommendations of a soil test for the application rates of fertilizers and lime.
  • These suggestions are particular to each type of turfgrass.
  • Refer to HGIC 1652, Soil Testing, for sampling instructions.
  • Mow the lawn at the appropriate height for the kind of turfgrass.
  • A mowing height that is too low strains the turfgrass and may lead the mower to cut and disperse doveweed stolons, which can easily root in wet circumstances.

In contrast, a lawn maintained at the proper height promotes the growth of thick turfgrass and partially shadows the doveweed. Refer to HGIC 1205, Mowing Lawns, for the appropriate turfgrass cutting heights. Consider dethatching the grass at the right time if the thatch layer is greater than half an inch.

  • Please refer to HGIC 2360, Controlling Thatch in Lawns, for further information on dethatching.
  • Hand-pulling doveweed is useless as a technique of eradication because fragments of roots and stolons can regrow.
  • Controlling doveweed with herbicides may need two to three years of pre- and post-emergence application.

Post-emergence Herbicides: Use atrazine on centipedegrass and St. Augustinegrass for effective to superior doveweed control. In late spring, once the turfgrass has fully regrown, apply atrazine. Atrazine has a pre-emergence action that prevents the development of more weed seeds.

If necessary, submit a second application one month later. Do not apply atrazine to a lawn that is drought-stressed or if daily temperatures exceed 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Additionally, do not apply atrazine near water sources or while the water table is high. Utilize herbicides including 2,4-D, dicamba, and mecoprop (MCPP) for broadleaf weed management on bermudagrass, zoysiagrass, centipedegrass, St.

Augustinegrass, and tall fescue. If necessary, apply a second application 30 days later. Use a decreased amount of herbicide on centipedegrass and St. Augustinegrass, as directed on the label. The 3-way herbicides give adequate to good doveweed control. During spring green-up of the four warm-season turfgrasses, do not apply atrazine or 3-way herbicides (bermudagrass, zoysiagrass, centipedegrass, and St.

Augustinegrass). Celsius WG controls doveweed well on the four warm-season turfgrasses. Celsius WG should not be used on tall fescue lawns. In addition, Celsius WG is the only product that may be applied to warm-season lawns throughout the spring greening process. If a second application is required, wait between 2 and 4 weeks following the initial submission.

Spray 3% glyphosate over expansive doveweed-infested regions with little or no turfgrass to eradicate the weed. There are products containing 41% glyphosate with instructions for dilution in a pump-up sprayer. After the doveweed is eradicated, resow the lawn.

  1. See Table 1 for examples of brands and products, as well as further information on the use of atrazine, 3-way herbicides, Celsius WG, and glyphosate.
  2. Pre-emergence Herbicides: To inhibit the germination of doveweed seeds, a pre-emergence herbicide should be used in the spring and again in early summer.

As with many other pre-emergence herbicides, Indaziflam (Specticle G) prevents the growth of roots in both weeds and desirable turfgrasses; thus, adhere to the label instructions for application. Do not apply Specticle G to a lawn that was seeded less than 16 months ago, nor to a lawn that was sodded less than 3 months ago.

  • If Specticle G is applied to the grass, fresh sod should not be installed for at least six months.
  • On centipedegrass and St.
  • Augustinegrass, lower rates of Specticle G are advised.
  • Refer to Table 1 for further details.
  • Since doveweed seeds develop when soil temperatures reach 65 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit, the first treatment of pre-emergence herbicide should be made in mid-April, followed by a second dose 45 days later in the Upstate.

Apply the initial application around April 1 and the second application 45 days later in the Midlands. In coastal regions, the initial application should be made at the end of March, followed by a second application 45 days later. Water applications of granular fertilizer into the lawn.

Brands & Specific Products Herbicide Active Ingredient % Active Ingredient in Product Labeled for Use On
Pre-emergence Herbicides
Specticle G 1 Indaziflam 0.0224 Tall Fescue Bermudagrass Zoysiagrass Centipedegrass & St. Augustinegrass
Post-emergence Herbicides
Bayer BioAdvanced Southern Weed Killer for Lawns Concentrate; & RTS 2 2,4-D Mecoprop Dicamba 7.59 1.83 0.84 Tall Fescue Bermudagrass & ZoysiagrassUse at lower label rate on: Centipedegrass & St. AugustinegrassApplications may be repeated as needed after 30 days.
Bonide Weed Beater Lawn Weed Killer Concentrate 2,4-D Mecoprop Dicamba 7.59 1.83 0.84
Spectracide Weed Stop for Lawn Concentrate; & RTS 2 2,4-D Mecoprop Dicamba 7.59 1.83 0.84
Ferti-lome Weed-Out Lawn Weed Killer Concentrate with Trimec 2,4-D Mecoprop Dicamba 5.88 5.45 1.21
Southern Ag Lawn Weed Killer with Trimec Concentrate 2,4-D Mecoprop Dicamba 3.05 5.30 1.29
Gordon’s Trimec Ready to Spray Lawn Weed Killer Concentrate; & RTS 1 2,4-D Mecoprop Dicamba 5.56 1.34 0.62
Ortho Weed Be Gon Lawn Weed Killer Concentrate; & RTS 2 2,4-D Mecoprop Dicamba 8.658 2.127 0.371
Ortho WeedClear Weed Killer for Lawns Concentrate 2,4-D MCPP Dicamba 8.658 2.217 0.371 Tall Fescue Bermudagrass ZoysiagrassApplication may be repeated in 21 days
Hi-Yield Atrazine Weed Killer Atrazine 4.00 Only for use on Centipedegrass & St. Augustinegrass
Southern Ag Atrazine St. Augustine Weed Killer Conc. Atrazine 4.00
Celsius WG Herbicide 3 Thiencarbazone Iodosulfuron Dicamba 8.7 1.9 57.4 Bermudagrass Zoysiagrass Centipedegrass& St. Augustinegrass 4
Non-Selective Herbicides
Ace Concentrate Weed & Grass Killer Glyphosate 41% (most brands) For use within the lawn as spot spraying to kill large patches of doveweed. Then re-sod or re-seed these areas after doveweed is dead (at least 1 week later).
Bonide Kleenup Grass & Weed Killer Concentrate; & Ready to Use
Eliminator Weed & Grass Killer Super Concentrate
Gordon’s Groundwork Concentrate 50% Super Weed & Grass Killer
Hi-Yield Super Concentrate Killzall Weed & Grass Killer
Knockout Weed & Grass Killer Super Concentrate
Martin’s Eraser Systemic Weed & Grass Killer
Monterey Remuda Full Strength 41% Glyphosate Quick Kill Grass & Weed Killer
Roundup Original Concentrate
Roundup Pro Herbicide
Southern States Grass & Weed Killer Concentrate II
Tiger Brand Quick Kill Conc.
Total Kill Pro Weed & Grass Killer Herbicide
Ultra Kill Weed & Grass Killer Concentrate
Zep Enforcer Weed Defeat Concentrate
1 Specticle G is for use on well-established lawns, at least 16 months since the lawn was seeded or 3 months since sodded. Do not install sod in an area for at least 6 months after this pre-emergence application to the lawn. Use the lower rate of 2.9 pounds per 1000 square feet of lawn if soils are sandy, as indaziflam may leach downward and cause turfgrass injury.2 RTS: Ready-to-Spray (hose-end sprayer) 3 Celsius WG requires the addition of 2 teaspoons of a non-ionic surfactant (such as Hi-Yield Spreader Sticker), which is a wetter-sticker agent to aid in weed control and added at 0.25% by volume in a gallon of water.4 Spot treatments of Celsius WG to St. Augustinegrass at temperatures above 90 degrees may cause temporary growth regulation. Celsius WP is not for use on fescue lawns. Note: Do not apply any post-emergence herbicides, except Celsius WG Herbicide, to lawns during the spring green-up of turfgrass. Wait until the turfgrass is fully green.
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Each year, pesticides are updated. Joey Williamson completed the last update on 8/21. Original publication date: 02/20 If this paper does not address your questions, please contact the HGIC at [email protected] or 1-888-656-9986.

Does lawn Roundup destroy Virginia buttonweed?

Buttonweed Virginia buttonweed is among the most challenging broadleaf lawn weeds to control. (LSU AgCenter) QUESTION: Late last year, I had a hard issue with Virginia buttonweed in my grass. Then, I was advised that attempts to manage this plant must begin in the spring.

  1. What do you recommend? – Jeffrey Large ANSWER: In southern lawns, Virginia buttonweed (Diodia virginiana) is one of the most prevalent weeds.
  2. It is a warm-season perennial that grows from spring to summer.
  3. It is currently beginning to grow.
  4. By late summer, this weed’s mat-forming growth behavior can suffocate lawns.

Virginia buttonweed is among the most challenging broadleaf lawn weeds to eradicate. Generally, several herbicide treatments over the course of two seasons are required for large infestations. Multiple treatments of herbicides including 2,4-D, mecoprop, dicamba, and carfentrazone, such as Weed B Gon Max for Southern Lawns, Weed Free Zone, and Speed Zone, are successful at suppressing and marginally effective at killing buttonweed.

  • In LSU AgCenter studies, repeated treatments of the professional herbicides Celsius (thiencarbazone + iodosulfuron + dicamba) or metsulfuron (MSM Turf, Manor, Mansion and other brands) offered the most effective control of Virginia buttonweed.
  • Except for bahiagrass, Celsius and metsulfuron are safe for all southern turf types.

If you cannot obtain these active components in local nurseries, you may acquire these goods online. The most effective method of control is to apply one of these treatments to the entire lawn in early April and again in early May. After the treatments in April and May, however, you should anticipate to apply herbicides again throughout the summer.

Throughout the summer, observe the grass closely for symptoms of Virginia buttonweed. If you notice little areas developing, treat them locally. As certain herbicides can harm grasses when temperatures are high, apply as little herbicide to the lawn as feasible. Persistent and consistent spot treatment with glyphosate over time is yet another method for controlling this weed.

Glyphosate (Roundup, Killzall, and other brands) destroys this weed well, but it also kills the grass. When applying this non-selective herbicide, be sure to just spray the weeds. Enjoy reading about beautiful gardens? Even when it’s too hot/cold/wet to dig in the ground, you may enjoy the finest of Louisiana’s horticulture.

Metsulfuron-methyl is a residual sulonylurea chemical that is used as a selective pre- and post-emergence herbicide against broadleaf weeds and some annual grasses. It is a systemic chemical having foliar and soil action, and it takes effect immediately after the plant has absorbed it.

Is Virginia buttonweed an annual or a perennial?

Virginia Buttonweed is the most problematic weed on southern lawns. Ron Strahan Virginia buttonweed is regarded as the most invasive weed infesting southern turfgrass. The plant reproduces in a variety of methods, including strong seed production above and below ground from self-pollinating blooms, rooted stem fragments, and winter-hardy tap roots.

Even with the lowest blade height, this plant’s growth and seed production are unaffected by mowers. Due to the possibility of stem fragments rooting, mowing may actually contribute to the spread of buttonweed. The spread of but­tonweed in flower beds might result from directing the discharge from the mower deck toward the landscaping beds.

Virginia control of buttonweed Virginia buttonweed is resistant to the majority of selective herbicides used for weed management on turf, particularly in late summer when plants have hardened off. The weed should be managed as soon as perennial plants emerge from dormancy in the spring.

  1. April and May are optimal months for beginning spot spraying of buttonweed.
  2. In early April, perennial plants that stayed dormant following the first frost will begin to emerge.
  3. As spring temperatures rise, perennial “mother” plants get surrounded by seedlings.
  4. In the beginning of the growing season, perennial plants have fragile, fresh growth.

This is when perennial plants are most sensitive to pesticide absorption. In addition, pesticide sprays in the spring will readily eliminate germinating seedlings and dramatically lower the overall buttonweed population. The worst course of action is to wait until late July or August to apply the first herbicide.

  1. By late summer, strong populations of Virginia buttonweed can develop a thick mat that can destroy huge expanses of grass.
  2. On mature Virginia buttonweed, a single herbicide application has proven ineffective, especially in the late season.
  3. After the initial spring treatment, further applications must be made throughout the summer in order to manage buttonweed.

A programmatic technique is the most effective method for controlling buttonweed. Early spring applications of herbicides containing the active chemicals 2,4-D, dicamba, meco­prop and carfentrazone (Speed Zone Southern, Weed Free Zone, Weed B Gon) have been shown to effectively suppress developing perennial plants and destroy the initial flush of buttonweed seedlings.

St. Augustinegrass and centipedegrass are harmed excessively by 2,4-D-containing herbicides when temperatures above 85 degrees. Metsulfuron (MSM, Mansion) or Celsius herbicides should be used throughout the warm summer months. Always repeat applications of metsulfuron or Celsius four to six weeks following the initial application.

Both Celsius and metsulfuron performed well in laboratory studies, and St. Augustinegrass appears to tolerate both herbicides rather well, even in warm temperatures. Ron Strahan is an associate professor and weed scientist at the School of Plant, Environmental, and Soil Sciences.

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