The most common broadleaf weed in lawns is the dandelion. It is found in all kinds of environments but thrives in moist, thin turf.
- Over winters as a small rosette of leaves.
- Produces many flowering stems.
- Leaves are deeply notched.
- Bright yellow blossoms.
- Produces a very visible seed head which is easily dispersed by wind.
- One cup of dandelions in your diet is equal to 112% of your daily requirement of vitamin A and 535% of your vitamin K.
- When placed in a paper bag with unripe fruit, the flowers and leaves release ethylene gas ripening the fruit quickly.
- A dark red dye is obtained from the dandelion root.
There are a few measures that can be taken as far as preventing dandelions.
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- Dandelions can grow and will grow anywhere but they prefer acidic soils. This is where lime and soil tests become important.
- It is important to mow your lawn regularly. Mowing won’t kill the dandelion, but by consistently cutting off the flowers, it will make it harder for the weed to go to seed.
- Top dress our lawn in the fall with compost. Dandelions seem to thrive in soils with low levels of calcium and in soils that have a hard time breaking down organic matter.
- As in all weed prevention, a fuller, thicker lawn is the best way to fend off weeds. Our lawns are living organisms and if they start to thin out, that leaves available real estate for weeds to take over.
- Aerating and over seeding are very important to a weed free lawn.