The ideal American lawn is a consistent, lush spread of nothing but deep green blades of grass. The mower may even create a criss-cross pattern across its surface. Unfortunately, weeds can and do get in the way of this idyllic scene. One of the most common weeds in North American lawns is chickweed. It is everywhere. Below is a guide on what it is, how to control it, and how one might make it useful.
What Is Chickweed?
Chickweed is a ground-covering plant that is highly aggressive. It grows much between March and April in moist soil. It spreads by growing roots out of its outreaching stems and casting up to 800 seeds by the end of the season. It is an annual species, but is so aggressive that it easily comes back the following year.
Behavior aside, it is a fascinatingly beautiful plant if one takes time to appreciate it. It has bright green leaves in opposite pairs, and the mass is dotted all over with tiny white flowers. They have only five petals, but look like they have ten because each petal is shaped like rabbit ears. Chickweed usually stays at about 2 inches high, but can grow up to 6 inches.
How to Control It in Your Lawn
There are several ways to manage this plant in your lawn. One way is to pull it out by hand, which may be the most direct approach. Some say that this is less effective, though, because it is time-consuming and potentially allows some roots systems to remain and regrow.
Another way is to use a weed killer. People have become warier about chemical weed killers today, since it can be harmful to surrounding plants or even wildlife. However, there are also natural and homemade weed killers like vinegar, boiling water, etc. This will still hazard the health of the grass around the chickweed.
Everyone agrees that the best way to prevent and manage chickweed in your lawn is to have an excellent lawn care plan. With the best practices in place for a healthy lawn, the chances of developing a chickweed infestation are small. However, a little bit of weed amid the grass will not totally destroy the aesthetic.
How to Repurpose Chickweed
If you choose to experiment with this weed, you can reach out to those who have already taken advantage of chickweed’s benefits. Chickweed can be an anti-inflammatory medicine, tea, or dietary supplement. Snip off the tops of the plant, rinse, and dry or serve fresh.
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