The definition of a weed is a plant that is not welcomed or preferred in a lawn or plant bed. There are a number of recognized weeds that are common in Tennessee but sometimes a different species of grass in a yard could be considered a wee.
In Tennessee, we have weeds that have different growing seasons. Some complete their growth after a year and then die. These are called summer and winter annuals. Summer annuals usually germinate from seeds in the spring grow to produce seed in the fall and die. Winter annuals will germinate from seeds in late summer or fall go dormant in winter and then grow to produce seeds and die in summer.
Weed Survival and Growth In Tennessee
There are also weeds that have a two-year growing season called biennials. Weeds and plants that continue to grow over two years are called perennials. The leaves may die back in the winter but the root systems survive to begin growth in the spring.
Common Weeds In Tennessee
Some of the most common weeds in Tennessee are crabgrass, clover, dandelion and wild garlic.
Crabgrass is a summer annual that is grass like and grows in a mat out from a central base. Very common weed during the summer.
Clover is a very common weed in Tennessee found in many yards. It has a leaf with three branches and a faint white marking near the base of each leaflet. Clover has white rounded flower heads and will attract bees. Sometimes you might be able to find a four-leaf cloverleaf.
The dandelion is considered a weed
Dandelions are also well recognized in a yard. This weed has broad leaves radiate out from a central base. The yellow flowers stand up tall on a single stem.
Wild garlic is recognized as it grows in bunches in lawns. These plants resemble an onion plant with underground bulbs and have a strong garlic odor when pulled up.
Interesting items pertaining to common weeds in Tennessee
- Some weed plants can produce tens of thousands of seeds during a season and can spread to other yards.
- Primary control for many weeds should start before the weed begins to grow.
- Some weeds grow from not only seeds but also root systems and tubers under the ground making them very hard to control.
Tennessee has a number of weed species that can invade our yards. We have only covered a few. It is interesting to note that even bermudagrass, a common yard grass in many regions of the state is considered a weed when it starts growing in a fescue grass yard.
Weed control and turf management
The best weed control program starts before the weed begins to grow. Putting a pre-emergence control product on the lawn to stop the weed from growing and has to be applied at certain times. The longer the weed is allowed to grow the harder it is to kill and control. Having a professional weed control program is suggested.