Get rid of dandelions and rescue your plants from being overcrowded by this weed. Dandelions are yellow-flowered plants that belong to the Asteraceae family, and although they have some benefits, they can also be an allergen to your skin if you get into contact with them.
Dandelions also crowd out and possibly damage desirable plants, mostly in lawns. For these and other harmful reasons, we will help you unleash methods on how to get rid of dandelions, so continue reading!
How To Get Rid of Dandelions: Physical Methods
Hand-pulling, using a weed-puller, or manually digging the dandelion out are the most effective ways to physically get rid of the plant.
Problems that come with the presence of dandelions can become more intense when the plant is left as it grows. Dandelions compete for essentials like water, air and nutrients. Even if you apply fertilizers, the dandelions will still suck all the nutrients before your lawn can access them.
– Hand Pulling
A more natural way to remove dandelions from lawn is by pulling them with your hands. This is best done during the plant’s flowering stage before they produce seeds. First, water the area to make the soil soft and damp before pulling the dandelions. Doing this facilitates easy pulling of the plant by ensuring that the roots are loosely bound to the soil.
After pulling the dandelion off the soil, allow the area where it was to dry for a few days. This is crucial because if there are any roots left, they won’t produce shoots as the condition won’t be conducive enough.
– Pulling With a Weed-Puller
Pulling dandelion plants using a weed puller is quicker than using your hands. This strategy is another selective way to kill dandelions on your lawn. The weed puller should reach the taproot of the plant to avoid leaving dandelion roots, which might shoot up again.
– Digging the Dandelion Out
You can also get rid of dandelions by digging a hole around them to increase the ease of removing them. This is a partially selective method for removing the plant. To completely remove dandelions from lawn, make the ground wet first before digging it out. When the ground is wet, you can easily dig the hole and remove the dandelion plant from the roots.
– Mowing High
If there are any dandelions germinating underneath the lawn, they will not survive due to insufficient sunlight as there would be a dense shade above them. The dandelions will then gradually die from the roots.
Using Chemical Methods
Herbicides and even vinegar can be used to get rid of stubborn dandelions in a garden. Apart from the physical methods for dealing with dandelions, there are also chemical strategies that are viable. We will look at some of these chemical interventions in this section.
– Systematic Herbicides
The best way to get rid of dandelions is by using systematic herbicides like glyphosate which enters the system of the plant and destroys it from the roots. This treatment leaves the plant with no ability to produce shoots, even when all other conditions are conducive.
This method is non-selective to other plants so the dandelions should be on an isolated area away from the plants that you want to keep. This systematic treatment strategy can be the best way to eliminate dandelions in backyard.
If there is a need to remove dandelions from the lawn, you can consider selective spraying using natural herbicides. You only spray the chemical directly on the dandelions to avoid killing your lawn.
We also recommend that you avoid watering the dandelions six hours after spraying. This helps to ensure that the chemical is not washed away before it enters the plant’s system.
You can get rid of dandelions by carefully applying vinegar to them. To do this, begin by cutting the stem as close to the ground as possible before applying the vinegar on that cut. Make sure the vinegar gets to the point of cutting so that it spread to the whole root. If the cut is below the surface, open a small hole until you reach the cut and apply the vinegar.
– Pre-Emergent Herbicides
You can get rid of dandelions through the use of pre-emergent herbicides on the area you intend to grow your lawn or in your backyard. These chemicals inhibit the germination seeds of dandelions.
After treating the ground with pre-emergent herbicides, leave the ground dry for about seven to ten days before you plant your lawn. This ensures that all dandelion seeds die before you grow the lawn.
– Strategic Fertilizer Application
To avoid the dandelion problem in lawn, you can also apply fertilizer to the lawn every six to eight weeks, during the growing phase. It is important that you apply the correct amounts of fertilizer to avoid burning your well-loved lawn due to excessive nitrogen.
This fertilizing schedule helps the lawn to grow densely. Dandelion seeds will suffocate below the crowded lawn and fail to spring out to reach the sunlight.
If there are any dandelions springing on the lawn and flowering, don’t let them sprout their seeds. Remove the stem before seeds are produced. After cutting the stem, you can then use an acid such as vinegar on the cut to completely destroy the roots. Herbicides are not useful when the plant has lost its stem.
Frequently Asked Questions
Go through this section to get the answers to some of the burning questions that you might have.
– What Kills Dandelions but Not the Grass?
Products such as broadleaf herbicides kill weeds like the dandelion without harming the grass on a lawn. On the other hand, non-selective herbicides kill all plant life that it comes in contact with, so make sure to read the labels before buying herbicides for your lawn.
– Why Do I Have So Many Dandelions?
There are a lot of dandelions in a yard because, towards the colder months of the year, the flowers of the dandelion dry up, releasing hundreds of seeds that can grow into a whole new plant, which is why dandelions are able to multiply quickly. The fluffy seeds of dandelions spread through tiny wing-like spikes that can go for long distances. Wherever the seeds land, they germinate into another dandelion plant.
In most cases, dandelions notoriously grow in lawns, establishing their roots. Every part of the roots of dandelions has the ability to develop into a whole plant. Dandelions are flowering plants that regularly spring up on a lawn; each of them has a long taproot, which takes part in slowing down other plants around them by competing for nutrients. These plants are perennial weeds that come back each year.
The lawn suffers stunted growth due to the competition for water and nutrients caused by the presence of dandelions. Dandelions problem in lawn arises from the way they feed on the ground. The taproots of these plants are fleshy and strong to the effect that they suck most of the water in the ground. Roots from the lawn usually spread and do not grow deep into the ground, resulting in less water for the other plants in the lawn.
– How Do You Keep Dandelions From Spreading?
Before the plant sprouts, cut the stem of the plant and apply an acid (vinegar) to the cut end to get rid of dandelions permanently and keep them from spreading. Leave the cut for about 24 hours as the roots dry. Water the area and use a weed puller to pull the remains of the dandelion out from the ground.
– Should You Remove Dandelions From Lawn?
Yes, if the dandelions in the yard are competing with the plants for needed nutrients, it is definitely best to remove them from the lawn. However, these weeds also have some health benefits as they contain antioxidants that help to scavenge any oxidative free radicals that are naturally produced by your body during biochemical reactions. There is also a high content of vitamins in these herbs.
Dandelions contain compounds that reduce cholesterols levels, thereby lowering the risk of heart diseases. Tea from dandelions may be used as a medicine for addressing high blood pressure. Animal studies showed that dandelions may protect the liver from possible damage. Dandelions may also be helpful in reducing the growth of cancerous cells.
This article unpacked various strategies for getting rid of dandelions. Here is a quick summary that you can refer to.
- Hand-pulling, digging, and using a weed puller are the best physical ways to get rid of dandelions.
- Chemical ways of removing dandelions include the use of herbicides, depending on whether the dandelion is isolated from desirable plants or not.
- Dandelions are yellow, bright-flowered terrarium plants that sprout seeds and multiply.
- Any part of a dandelion’s root can develop into a whole plant if conducive conditions of sunlight, air, water and nutrients are provided.
- Dandelions have fleshy taproots that suck water more than any other plants around them.
If you use the methods that we discussed appropriately, you will be an expert in getting rid of dandelions, both selectively and non-selectively. Start to put your knowledge into practice now!
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