Deep underneath the seemingly perpetual blanket of snow, they lie and wait. These invaders are poised to make another run at a hostile takeover of your properties.

Weeds in our landscape beds are relentless unwelcomed guests to us all, even in Washington and Colorado where they have shown to be a little more tolerant of weed(s)

Many of us seem to be in a never-ending battle with bedweeds of some sort. In an effort to put together an effective game plan, you must first know what you are up against. There are many things to consider, here are a few:

  • Are they grassy or broadleaf weeds, or both? Sedges?
  • Are you dealing with annuals? If so, are they summer or winter annuals?
  • What type of mulch or stone is being utilized?
  • Which plants are sensitive to applications?

Once we’ve answered those questions, we need to determine if we can use an “over the top” herbicide or a non-selective to take care of existing weeds. An “over the top” herbicide is a material that can be applied over the planting that will selectively control the weeds without harming the desired plant material. Make sure to read labels to ensure that specific plant material is tolerant if using these types of materials. However, most of us will be using good old glyphosate in targeted applications. Depending on what you are trying to control, there are many additives to help it work better against stubborn or resistant weeds. Ask your ATS sales rep for recommendations.  Unless I’m your sales rep, then I just feel sorry for you…

Once you’ve controlled existing weeds, then you can focus on prevention.  Whether you are using granular or liquid applications, when utilizing bed pre-emergents, make sure to identify if the products are better on top or underneath the mulch. Trifluralin, isoxaben, and oryzalin tend to work better under the mulch. Flumioxazin and oxadiazon are better when applied on top. Timing is going to be dependent on the type of weeds you are dealing with, but a spring and fall pre-emergent application usually will provide excellent results.

There are many other factors that will determine your success. However, the best results always start with building and implementing a solid plan.

P.S. Please wake me up when spring gets here.