Carpetweed is an invasive plant that can be difficult to get rid of. It spreads quickly, and it’s able to grow just about anywhere there are moist conditions.
It is one of those pesky weeds that can pop up unexpectedly in gardens everywhere, but with a little knowledge about carpetweed and the proper steps to take in getting rid of it, you can successfully remove this weed from your garden in a fairly straightforward manner.
This blog post will help you identify whether or not you have carpetweed as well as provide steps on how to remove this invasive weed from your yard once and for all!
What Is Carpetweed?
Carpetweed is the common name for Mollugo verticillata, which is also sometimes called Indian Chickweed.
It is originally native to the tropical regions of the Americas, but has since spread throughout more temperate climates and is now found in many countries in both North and South America, as well as the Eurasian and African continents.
It is an edible weed and has been used traditionally as vegetables as well as for medicinal benefits, but it is not commonly eaten anymore. It is listed as an invasive weed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, though not classified as such on the European continent.
How Does Carpetweed Grow And Where?
To get rid of carpetweed, you need to identify how and where this weed is growing so you know how many applications you will need to use on them.
It spreads through seed dissemination, in which the reddish-brown seeds are carried by the wind or animals, and grows quickly to take over flowerbeds and other areas of your garden.
Carpetweed is a weed that grows in warm climates. It is natively a tropical weed, but has invaded temperate zones as well, and has now been found in all U.S. states except for Alaska, Hawaii, and Utah, as well as all major southern provinces in Canada.
It prefers wet environments and soil, but can also grow in disturbed soil habitats such as fields and meadows, parking lots and roadsides, and lawns and gardens.
It grows by creeping along the ground and ends up forming a large mat, or carpet, of its leaves, which is where it gets its name from.
How You Can Identify Carpetweed
The best way to identify this plant is by looking for its greenish-brown stalk with white flowers that grow close together along it. The leaves are long, have a bright green color, and are shaped like arrows, and the flowers are small white balls on top of single stems.
The weed grows only along the ground, so it might not be easy to spot because there are no flowers or stalks that reach up a foot or higher to catch your eye. The circular mat that it produces can grow to two feet in diameter, however, so it is a pretty big weed that would be hard to miss if you’re searching your lawn for it.
Ways You Can Kill Carpetweed In Your Yard
Once you have identified where and how this weed is growing in your lawn, you can get to work on removing it.
You can kill carpetweed in multiple ways, both chemically or organically. There are pros for both methods so you should choose the one that works best in your situation.
The most effective method of controlling this weed is spraying it with an herbicide containing glyphosate onto it, such as this Compare-N-Save Concentrate. Glyphosate is a post-emergent herbicide, but you can use either a post-emergent or pre-emergent weed killer. Your best bet is simply to read on the label whether it can kill carpetweed.
The best time for a weed killer application is when the weeds are flowering because they absorb more pesticides than at any other point during their life cycle, and always be sure to wear protective gear and keep children and pets away from your treated areas.
Carpetweed does not have enough leaves to compete with other more hearty weeds such as dandelions or clover, so you can easily pull it out by hand if the root systems are small. This is most easily done when the soil is damp or moist, so wait for the day after a rainfall. You can use either your hands (be sure to wear gloves) or a small hoe or spade.
If pulling out the weed by hand, do so in the springtime before it flowers, so the seeds don’t have a change to spread.
Can You Prevent Carpetweed from Growing On Your Lawn?
There are a variety of methods you can use to kill carpetweed in your yard but ultimately the best solution for preventing future infestations is through smart landscaping choices, such as installing good drainage systems or removing any dead plants from flowerbeds where they could provide moisture.
Mulching areas where the weed is known to grow will prevent the seeds from germinating and growing, and maintaining a good lawn-care routine like mowing, seeding, and aerating your yard and garden space will help the growth of healthy and preferable grasses and plants. This means the carpetweed won’t be able to compete or get the nutrients it needs to survive.
Prevention is always better than cure or elimination, so try your best to keep carpetweeds from growing in your lawn before you have to deal with them!
Carpetweed is a weed that can be difficult to get rid of. But if you know what it looks like, how it grows and where it lives in your yard, then fighting this pesky plant becomes much easier. If you’ve been dealing with a persistent carpetweed problem in your yard, we hope this blog post has provided some helpful information for getting rid of it.
The most important thing is not giving up because eventually, if you stick it out long enough, there’s no weed that will survive. Good luck, and happy gardening!