Controlling sticky weed and sticker burrs

One of the broadleaf weeds that runs rampant in our area during February and March is sticky weed, also known as Velcro weed. 

It’s very easy to control with simple broadleaf weed killers (be sure to add a surfactant), but if you do nothing at all, it will burn away quite naturally once high temperatures reach the 80s and 90s.  

The botanical name for sticky weed, Velcro weed or sticky willy is actually Galium aparine. It’s also often mislabeled “sticker burrs,” but that’s a different menace altogether.

No matter what you call it, you've probably rubbed up against this annual while gardening or working in the landscape. Its seeds germinate in the cool, wet weather of late winter, then grow rapidly into swirly, sticky stems of green that glue themselves to your fence, your pets and your socks.  But before you run to the store for broadleaf weed control, know that it is very easy to just pull out of your landscape or lawn, roots and all.  But with our rough January in mind, HERE IS EVERYTHING YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT BROADLEAF WEED CONTROLS.  

I have A SEPARATE TIP SHEET on controlling sticker burrs, burr grass, or whatever you want to call that other insidious weed.  Sticker burrs and burr grass are more “grassy” than sticky weed, so broadleaf weed controls won’t work on them.  Also, beating sticker burrs takes a full year of change to some cultural practices. 

As noted above, you need to add a surfactant when applying weed controls. If you said, “A what?” you need to read “All About Surfactants” and watch the video below to understand why they’re so important.

GardenLine with Randy Lemmon

GardenLine with Randy Lemmon

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