Common lawn weeds include dandelion, chickweed, crabgrass and white clover. Controlling these weeds involves application of chemical or natural herbicides at specific times during their growth for optimal results.
Dandelions are weeds that have a yellow flower and distinct jagged leaves and that flourish in early spring. Dandelions are controlled by treating them with broadleaf chemical herbicides containing dicamba or triclopyr. Dandelions are easier to get rid of in early spring, just before seeding of the first generation.
White clovers have white-pink flowers and three-split leaves with the ability to thrive in low nitrogen level conditions, especially in high phosphorous soils. Treatment includes pre-emergent application with the same chemical herbicides as the dandelion.
Chickweed is common in naturally grown lawns where weed killer is not applied. The weed has small flowers and succulent leaves and forms a dense mat close to the ground. Chickweed prefers well-watered soil. Control includes use of conventional weed-n-feed products or broadleaf herbicides containing mecoprop. A vinegar solution is a natural treatment herbicide that works.
Crabgrass has a light green color and is a coarse weed with hairy leaf blades and thick stems. In under-fertilized, poorly drained soil, crabgrass can easily overtake an entire lawn. Pre-emergent herbicides such as dithopyr and pendimethalin help control crabgrass growth by preventing the seeds from germinating, while siduron prevents the seeds from starting. The organic alternative is corn gluten meal, once used as feed in hog farms.