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Backyard Weeds

Backyard Weeds

Backyard Weeds

Noxious Weed: “Any plant designated by federal, state or local government officials as injurious to public health, agriculture, recreate, wildlife or property. Once a weed is classified as noxious authorities can implement quarantines and take other actions to contain or destroy the weed and limit its spread.” For example, Field Bindweed is considered a noxious weed. See a list of noxious weeds by state here: http://wssa.net/links/noxious-weed-list/. A weed can be any plant growing where you don't want it to. However, there are some particularly weedy species to keep an eye out for. These aggressive plants not only make your yard look messy, they can also choke out the garden plants you've worked so hard to grow. Whether you're trying to identify lawn weeds or garden weeds, this handy guide will help you identify more than 30 common weeds by photo, plus give you tips for how to best remove them.The best defense is preventing weeds from taking root in the first place. Keep your lawn lush and eliminate thin, vulnerable spots. Mulch around garden plants and landscaping to stop seeds from reaching the soil. The Weed Science Society of America recommends making sure backyard compost reaches a high enough temperature to decompose any weed seeds mixed in with grass clippings or leaves.This weed’s white (or pale blue or pink) trumpet flowers show its relation to the morning glory family. It’s classified as noxious, though, and is notorious for taking over areas with poor soil and dry conditions that might stress other plants. Bindweed can spread 10 feet in a single season and sink its roots nine feet deep, which helps it resist post-emergent herbicides, according to the Oregon Extension Service. Use a garden fork or weeding tool to find and pull the roots.

Among the most common weeds in America, lambsquarters reseed each year and seem especially common in gardens among root crops and beans. They can grow up to four feet tall with scallop-edged trowel-shaped leaves with gray undersides. Weed them early in the season or collect them to sauté in olive oil. Foragers claim they have more calcium than spinach. If they’re invading your yard and at a safe distance from your garden, you can try a post-emergent herbicide. Being an annual weed, crabgrass perpetuates itself via seed—millions of seeds. To control crabgrass, you'll need to address the issue in spring when the plant is at its most vulnerable. The best option to kill crabgrass is to remove the plants by hand, roots and all. After that, use an organic fertilizer to encourage the growth of lawn grass which will crown the crabgrass out. The flowers of stinging nettle plants are inconspicuous. You'll pay plenty of attention to its barbs, however, if you're unfortunate enough to brush against stinging nettle! The discomfort these weeds can cause seems incongruous with the fact that stinging nettle is edible. But the young leaves of stinging nettle are, indeed, cooked and eaten by wild foods enthusiasts. Just be sure to pick at the right time and prepare properly to ensure safe consumption.For the extremely stubborn weeds that keep reappearing or aren’t easily eradicated, what’s a green thumb with an organic garden to do? Weeds make for extra work in the garden and compete with the plants we’re actually trying to grow. We have a couple of great articles with strategies for reducing garden weeds and organic ways to control them on this site. But here, I thought I would help identify a few types of common garden weeds that I have to deal with.Years ago, when I was working at a gardening magazine, I received a book about all the leafy greens you could eat. It included purslane, a “weed” that looked exactly like what I was pulling from my garden. In her book, The Wildcrafted Cocktail, author Ellen Zachos even makes a Purslane Margarita! It kind of looks like a succulent, with these chocolate brown stems. and the leaves resemble of those of a jade plant. A lot of foraging sites feature warnings not to confuse it with some of the spurge weeds, like hairy spurge. (Source: savvygardening.com)

 

 

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