Many people associate weeds with spring or summer when it seems like everything is coming to life. In fact, there are plenty of winter weeds in Texas that deserve our attention while temperatures are cool. Let’s look into what these weeds are and what you can do about them.
Step 1: Identification
Most weeds fall into two primary groups: grassy or broadleaf. Grassy weeds look more like, well, grass, and broadleaf weeds have leaves with a variety of shapes and sizes. Here are a few of the most common winter weeds in Texas you can find:
These little guys have numerous branched stems that form a patchy “mat” in your yard. The leaves are smooth and oval in shape. They are annuals and reproduce by seed to come back year after year.
We’re all familiar with this common weed with leaflets of three (sometimes four), but these little guys are anything but lucky. These annuals can also have numerous white or bright yellow flowers.
These weeds typically bloom in early spring with tops of purple leaves and pink flowers. The flowers will continue to bloom even in winter. It’s sometimes considered an invasive species in some parts of North America. Believe it or not, the young plants have edible tops and leaves and can be added to salads or in stir-frys.
This grassy weed is a perennial that can quickly take root to invade your turfgrass. It grows in clumps with shoots that can grow out of the top.
Our friends over at Emerald Lawns have a great resource with more info on winter weeds in Texas if you are so inclined.
Step 2: Eradication
Aside from good ‘ole fashioned weed-pulling, we’ve got a few options when it comes to treating your yard with chemicals and herbicides. These magic potions can be tailored to specific weeds, temperatures, and seasons. You’ll find two different types of herbicides:
- Preemergent Barriers: These chemicals attack seeds and roots and condition the soil to help prevent weeds from growing.
- Post-emergent Treatments: These chemicals target weeds that are already growing, either when they first start to appear or after they are already established.
Step 3: Maintenance
Perhaps the most important (but most underappreciated) step is maintenance! A healthy lawn helps to choke out weeds. Where your grass is weak or sparse, weeds will find it easier to claim their territory. Everything from soil nutrients to PH and compaction all plays a role in making your yard hospitable (or inhospitable) to weeds.
At Top Choice, we offer a comprehensive year-round fertilization and weed control program. Several of our eight annual treatments are specifically designed to handle those tough winter weeds in Texas. Each visit also includes spot treatment for all broadleaf weeds, insect, and disease activity as necessary
Harmonizer & Weed Barrier (Sep-Nov)
Our blend of potassium and micronutrients helps prepare the lawn for dormancy and protects against freeze damage. We also apply preemergent weed control on all turf types to drastically minimize the weed activity associated with winter and spring.
- Bio-nutritional application balances healthy microorganisms
- Slow-release fertilization provides a steady food source for the winter
- Preemergent barrier prevents winter weeds
Winter Soil Conditioner (Nov-Dec)
This soil-conditioning step reduces alkalinity and helps keep the grass greener and healthier all year round.
- Sulfur reduces our naturally alkaline soil in Central Texas
- Potassium reduces winter damage and promotes quicker recovery
Soil Enhancer (Jan-Feb)
Start the year out with our Soil Enhancer application which contains a broad spectrum of nutrients and trace elements for superior soil and leaf biology.
- Balances pH of the soil
- Strengthens the root system of the grass
Revitalizer & Weed Barrier (Feb-Mar)
The Revitalizer application contains a bio-nutritional product in conjunction with fertilization and preemergent weed control.
- Bio-nutrients promotes helpful microorganisms
- Contains both quick and slow-release fertilizers
- Preemergent barrier prevents weeds for Bermuda and Buffalo Lawns (excludes St. Augustine and Zoysia lawns)
Let’s tackle those winter weeds!
Whether you are a grizzled veteran of lawn care or a turf grass newbie, you don’t have to face this battle alone. Together with our partners at Emerald Lawns, the Top Choice crew is standing by to fortify your defenses and lead the counter-attack against those pesky winter weeds in Texas.