Sandspurs: Will Weed Killer Work?

brute(Florida 9B)September 21, 2009

I first searched for "sandspurs" on the Lawn Care forum, but no dice. So, I came here because sandspurs are probably mostly a Florida problem.

One "weed" I simply won't tolerate is sandspurs because I walk barefoot around my place most of the time.

The thing that drives me crazy is the fact that until the "spurs" appear on their stalks, the sandspur plant is undistinguishable from the surrounding grass.

Will your typical lawn weed killer get rid of them?

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carolb_w_fl(zone 9/10)

FWIW, the way I eradicated sandspurs from my yard was to diligently scout & pull every last 1 - best done while they were still green & before the spurs(actually the seeds)were ripe(brown & dry & easily detached). The plant sends out very long runners very close to the ground, so it isn't always apparent how far & wide it goes.

I traced the runners to the central root area & dug that out, pulling the runners along w/ it. A large area may be the result of just a few plants, so it may not take very long to clear.I was careful to make sure no spurs were left behind to sprout into new plants.

& they went in the trash - not compost - I've been spur-free for years now.

Weed killer will kill the plants, but I believe you'll still have to pull 'em, or the seeds will just grow again.

Oh, & I think the proper name isn't 'sandspur'(tho I grew up calling 'em that) - it's sand BURR(?)

    Bookmark   September 21, 2009 at 10:15AM
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olyagrove(z9 Tampa, FL)

I am not help, just wanted to say this: I hate sandspurs!!!

My neighbors , an elderly couple, have a lawn guy come out...I am pretty sure he sprays their yard. They have grass ans LOTS of sandspurs (does not seem that the sandspurs get affected :( )

I pull mine out - dig out the plants when I find them....
Nasty bugger

    Bookmark   September 21, 2009 at 10:16AM
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There are pre-emergent herbicides labeled for Sandspur control. Check with U of F to get application timing right. You may have to put down multiple applications through the growing season.

Another step you might take is to mow with a bagger mower and throw the collected clippings into the garbage. You still might need to walk on lawn in flip flops for a while. The burrs will stick to flip flops too!

    Bookmark   September 21, 2009 at 1:11PM
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I just dug up some of this noxious weed today and yesterday . This is THE year for weeds !

Look up Sandbur and you'll find some info . It can be controlled with Image or Benefin also called Balan . Image is safe to use on St. Augustine grass . Other products are fine on Bahia or Centipede but will damage St. Augustine . Read ALL the words on the label . It may take more than one application to eliminate Sandburs . They are tough boogers .

From UF :
"When managing weeds, the first and best method of weed control begins with proper management practices that encourage a dense, thriving turf. Healthy turf shades the soil so sunlight cannot reach weed seeds that are ready to germinate. A thick turf also minimizes the physical space available for weeds to become established. There are several management practices that will promote a healthy, dense grass. These include: proper turfgrass selection, proper cultural practices, traffic control, and pest control . "

Here is a link that might be useful: Southern Sandbur - Cenchrus echinatus

    Bookmark   September 21, 2009 at 2:45PM
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