weed killers - Knowledgebase Question

Hermitage, Te
Question by cathygriswo
March 30, 2010
I have several types of weeds trying to take over my flower beds (mostly perennials). They range from henbit to wild onions. How can I rid my garden of these?

Answer from NGA
March 30, 2010


There's a product called Over The Top (Fertilome) that is safe to use in most perennial beds and will take care of most weeds but you'll want to carefully read the label and the attached plant list. It lists plants the product is safe to use around. As for wild onions, I think you have a battle on your hands.

Wild onions are extremely difficult to eradicate because they have lots of reserve energy stored in their bulbous roots. The best approach is to dig them out. Here's some background information: Wild garlic (Allium vineale) and wild onion (Allium canadense) are winter perennials. They emerge in late fall from underground bulbs and grow through the winter and spring. In late spring, aerial bulblets are formed and the plants die back in early summer. The underground bulbs can persist in the soil for several years. While both have thin, green, waxy leaves, those of wild garlic are round and hollow, while those of wild onion are flat and solid. There are a few control options. Pulling: With a small number of weeds, pulling, though difficult, is an option. It?s likely, however, that bulbs or bulblets will be left in the ground and new leaves will later re-emerge. For best results, dig them out with a thin trowel. Mowing: Mowing will not kill wild garlic or wild onions. Regular mowing can weaken plants and prevent them from setting seed. Chemical: Unfortunately, there are no preemergence herbicides that will control wild onion or wild garlic. They must be treated with a postemergence herbicide, and persistence is the key. Plants will need to be sprayed more than once and for more than one season. One characteristic that makes control difficult is that both have a thin, glossy leaf to which herbicides don?t readily adhere. Adding a spreader-sticker to the spray solution will help it to adhere evenly. Be aware that some products have a spreader-sticker already added. You'll need to spray individual plants with the herbicide while keeping the herbicide off your desireable plants. Best wishes with your eradication project!

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