How to get rid of Creeping Charlie

andyandy(6bMI)June 21, 2006

Dr. Rogers-

I have been fighting to a stand off with creeping charlie for about 5 years. Would you please recomend something that would kill it off for good without screwing up my garden or my in-ground palms.



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Dear AndyAndy,

Thank you very much for your inquiry. Creeping Charlie or ground ivy is a particularly problematic weed because of the fact that it is resistant to a number of herbicides, but there are some very effective products available. (One of the things I am assuming here is that you want to control the creeping Charlie in your turf areas.) When searching for a herbicide look for products containing triclopyr. This includes Weed B Gon Purple, Weed B Gon Chickweed, and Weed B Gone Max. If you have other broadleaf weeds such as dandelion, Weed B Gon Max would be a great choice because it contains 4 active ingredients 2,4-D, which is very effective on dandelion, MCPP, dicamba, and triclopyr. The best time to apply your perennial weed control products for species such as creeping Charlie is in fall (October 1-15). At this time weeds will be going dormant and storing nutrients, and if you spray at this time the weed will actually store the herbicide, giving you the best control response. The second best time is in the spring right at and after creeping Charlie flowers.

A second good choice for chemical control is quinclorac (Drive). This is harder to find and is more expensive (it is also better). I have never heard of it being sold in the bigger stores, only Lesco. It can be applied alone or mixed with any three way product (triclopyr does not have to be in the mix) and you will get excellent results. Timing is still the same. The good news about Drive is that is the best post emergence herbicide for crabgrass that I have ever seen. It will come off patent next year, so I suspect is availability will become more widespread.

Again, thanks for the question and let me know if you have more.


Trey Rogers
The Yard Doctor

    Bookmark   June 22, 2006 at 8:12AM
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kwoods(Cold z7 Long Is)

20 mule team Borax was what worked for me. Theory being charlie is more boron sensitive than turf grass so you have to go easy. Sprayed Charlie w/ weed b gone max spring and fall last year and he just laughed. After the borax treatment he laughs no more.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2006 at 9:58AM
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"he laughs no more" LoL kwoods. :)

I wonder, is there a down side to using borax?

What would its effect be on the micro heard? Is this something one could use within an organic approach?


    Bookmark   September 3, 2006 at 7:59AM
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I too am having a terrible time with creeping charlie. It's now spread from a small garden area to the lawn. I want to get rid of it - but it's near a memorial tree that I am terrified of damaging. Any advice would be so appreciated.


    Bookmark   April 18, 2007 at 10:22AM
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I also have a problem in my garden area with creeping charlie. How do I get rid of charlie without killing my flowers??


    Bookmark   May 25, 2007 at 11:04AM
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Creeping charlie has all but taken over my lawn but I have dogs and cannot use any of the usual solutions. Does anyone have a solution for ridding this dreaded weed to save my lawn and not harm my dogs? Thanks

    Bookmark   August 7, 2007 at 2:11PM
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In the garden, I use a mixture of hand-pulling, round-up and massive amounts of mulch. When charlie reappears, which it always does, it's much easier to pull out of mulched areas.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2007 at 10:11PM
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How do I kill creeping charlie in my raspberry patch without killing the berries ?

    Bookmark   October 2, 2007 at 2:02PM
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Me too... I've tried everything from Ortho, Weed-B-Gone, and other across the counter products to professional ChemLawn service... Nothing gets rid of this stuff. I've been told to kill it all, plow and reseed. What is the use in that. Its everywhere and it would definitely return. I'm considering paving it and painting it green. That way I wouldn't have to do anything but paint it once a year or so... I GIVE UP to CREEPING CHARLIE. I'm through spraying and praying. Do you think plugging my yard with Zoysia Grass will eventually choke out all the weeds including Creeping Charlie???

    Bookmark   March 1, 2008 at 12:06AM
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5 teaspoons of 20 mule to 1 quart of H2O, (I make my in small batches to ensure it is completly disolved) put in sprayer and apply to the C/C. It worked for me in eastern N.C., I've applied it every four years just to maintain, must be careful of over doing it with the boron.

    Bookmark   March 1, 2008 at 5:09PM
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all my creeping charlie is in my flower beds and around my bulb that are under ground. What can I put down without harming my plants?

    Bookmark   March 2, 2008 at 12:47PM
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Hi Um would the Borax remedy hurts the other flowers that I have growing in the same bed. Thanks Joanie

    Bookmark   April 9, 2008 at 5:41PM
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I have had success with Ferti-Lome Weed-Out. Two applications weeks apart may be necessary, but it does work!

    Bookmark   April 30, 2008 at 8:57AM
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What is the experience out there with the 20 mule team? I'd be really interested in hearing about the impact on other plants when treating Creeping Charlie in flower beds and turf.

Please feel free to write directly.


    Bookmark   May 4, 2008 at 5:46PM
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I have dumped so much of the 20 mule in my ward that I should own the entire company. Guess what.. not only did it burn up the grass (and CC) when too much was put on a spot but CC is back this year and even stronger than ever.... it's even in my vegetable garden this spring.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 11:54AM
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I live in Northern Iowa and want to know how I could access
getting Borax to use to kill the creeping charlie thats
invading our lawn.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 6:02PM
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I have Zoysa grass and a huge crop of creeping charlie! I have been pulling it up after it rains but it is getting away from me. Is there a weed killer I can use that will kill it and not the grass?

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 5:12PM
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Creeping Charlie is tough. I attacked it for two years with Trimec, purchased at Agway. I mix it twice as strong as recomended and have had some success. Two times in the spring and twice in the fall to knock it back. This year I'm still fighting it but can't give it up. I've reseeded large spots. I've gone into the woods and sprayed it. Good Luck.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 8:10PM
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I am new to the home owning business. I didn't know much about weeds except the Dandelion. Last year I had this prickly low growing weed with a massive root system. I dug out 10 or so last year. This year there is 20-30 of them. Turns out to be Bull Thistle. (treating that with Round-Up, although a handful of Scott's Turf Builder +Weed Control did a number on the bigger ones)
Talking with the neighbors I asked him about creeping charlie because he is always talking about the problem he has but I never knew what it looked like. Well, he showed me and as I walk across my lawn, BAM!!! it hits me in the face.
The front yard is almost Dandelion free but 1/3 is covered in the C/C.
I have read all the responses and am in the process of using Scott's Turf Builder +Weed Control along with a spray of Weed-B-Gone Max.
I did the spray yesterday and the spreader today. I will keep you posted on my results.

Still not sure what that 20 mule team Borax some of you are talking about. Anyone enlighten me?

    Bookmark   May 28, 2008 at 7:53PM
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I am new to the home owning business. I didn't know much about weeds except the Dandelion. Last year I had this prickly low growing weed with a massive root system. I dug out 10 or so last year. This year there is 20-30 of them. Turns out to be Bull Thistle. (treating that with Round-Up, although a handful of Scott's Turf Builder +Weed Control did a number on the bigger ones)
Talking with the neighbors I asked him about creeping charlie because he is always talking about the problem he has but I never knew what it looked like. Well, he showed me and as I walk across my lawn, BAM!!! it hits me in the face.
The front yard is almost Dandelion free but 1/3 is covered in the C/C.
I have read all the responses and am in the process of using Scott's Turf Builder +Weed Control along with a spray of Weed-B-Gone Max.
I did the spray yesterday and the spreader today. I will keep you posted on my results.

Still not sure what that 20 mule team Borax some of you are talking about. Anyone enlighten me?

    Bookmark   May 29, 2008 at 8:42AM
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Guess I'll try the Borax on Charlie.
But I Need someones help tilling me what kind of grass I have around my house.The guy at the store thought it was crabgrass.But I'm not sure what it is. He told me to use WEED B GONE for crabgrass. I'm not sure where to ask this but thought someone could help me here.I can't show you a photo unless you send me an e-mail saying "show me your grass". Then I'll send you back a photo of the grass. Thanks Fred

    Bookmark   June 5, 2008 at 6:57PM
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I don't use pesticides whatsoever. I handpick the creeping charlie every time I go into my yard. Eventually, it gets less and less. Don't use Round Up or it will 'kill' your flowers and grass.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2008 at 5:30PM
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Last year one whole side of my front yard was covered with creeping charlie. I sprayed with Weed B Gone Max. Once in spring, early summer and agin in early fall. this year there is every little creeping charlie. I'm not a big fan of pesticides but there was just too much to pull. I know I will have an on going problem with charlie. He is living in my next door neighbors lawn.
You have to use Weed B Gone MAX regular weed be gon won't do it. It has not killed my grass and I do not spary it on my plants.


    Bookmark   June 21, 2008 at 2:36PM
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Any one that tells you they can get RID of Creeping Charlie should have their head examined! I have tried now for 4 years to even reduce it. The more I tried the harder it came back with a vengence! Finally I tried the BURN the LAWN Method. I did not want to use ROUNDUP or other such chemicals since I wanted to try to reseed and get back a lawn. Rented a flame thrower now 2nd time from my hardware store. Filled up the 20 gallon propane tank and went to town. Unbelievably flaming this stuff the grass went faster. And the little baby plants of creeping charlie were still happy and green till I stood their for about 30 seconds of scorching heat to make it go to Ashes. Like nature does... :-) fire is what turns over fields of grasses etc. So instead of long term issues with chemicals maybe burn the lawn where ever Creeping Charlie is! You will smile when you see this plant shrivel up! then put in new topsoil and reseed for a new lawn. It will come back where ever you missed it! Then handpull it to slow it down or use Trimec in limited areas. It will help but not cure your lawn of creeping charlie. What about landscape beds? We are trying now Curb-it 5 inch wide concreted curbs around most of our beds and use of rock, rubber mulch and landscape fabric as a second and third line of defense!

    Bookmark   June 26, 2008 at 12:43AM
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Hey guys,

I have been reading your frustrations. I want to reiterrate my post from two years ago, and remind you how important timing is for attacking this weed. A couple of applications in late September/early October is the key to beginning to control this monster. Plus, if you use Weed B Gon max over whole yard at this time, you will have an amazingly clean yard the next spring.

Creeping Charlie or ground ivy is a particularly problematic weed because of the fact that it is resistant to a number of herbicides, but there are some very effective products available. (One of the things I am assuming here is that you want to control the creeping Charlie in your turf areas.) When searching for a herbicide look for products containing triclopyr. This includes Weed B Gon Purple, Weed B Gon Chickweed, and Weed B Gone Max. If you have other broadleaf weeds such as dandelion, Weed B Gon Max would be a great choice because it contains 4 active ingredients 2,4-D, which is very effective on dandelion, MCPP, dicamba, and triclopyr. The best time to apply your perennial weed control products for species such as creeping Charlie is in fall (October 1-15). At this time weeds will be going dormant and storing nutrients, and if you spray at this time the weed will actually store the herbicide, giving you the best control response. The second best time is in the spring right at and after creeping Charlie flowers.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2008 at 10:47AM
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I can't believe it... I have finally stumbled on what this ugly, ugly weed is. I covered my garden with the black paper in between the rows and my creeping charlie loves it. Sun, no sun; whatever, it's happy. It is flourishing under there and just pushes the paper up. I have pulled so much out to no avail! I can see I'm not reading many positive comments so I'm not sure what I'm going to do. I'll keep reading...

    Bookmark   July 15, 2008 at 1:47PM
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Any herbicide that contains dicamba works. For awhile : ).

    Bookmark   July 16, 2008 at 8:00PM
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I live in northern Illinois. I have picked up creeping charlie from somewhere. I had none of this 3 years ago! All of a sudden, there it is. I have tried pulling, landscape fabric(it loves it and grows thru anyway), mulch, (it loves that even better) it now has overrun my flower gardens and has gone into the lawn. I am going to try the borax, although I am afraid it is going to kill my flowers... Any suggestions, I have never seen Weed-Be-Gone Max in any of the stores in our area. Regular Weed-Be-Gone does nothing and round-up will kill all the flowers. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thank you.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2008 at 4:04PM
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Here's the recipe to use if you have a lot of creeping charlie to kill:

1/4 cup Borax mixed with 5 gallons of water, pour into watering cans and apply liberally to the weeds.

Mix the Borax in a quart of warm water first to make sure it dissolves, otherwise you'll be left with chunks.

Borax can be found in most grocery stores in the laundry soap section.

Getting the solution from the 5 gallon bucket to the watering can is the most tedious part of this effort, so I also purchased a small water pump to help with the transfer.

This should not hurt the other vegitation that is already there.

It will most likely take several applications spaced out over days and weeks before you win. Don't give up!!!!

    Bookmark   July 20, 2008 at 4:34PM
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I never knew what this was until i bought my own house a few months ago. my parents came over and were shocked at all the CC and weeds. obviously i knew nothing about gardening! i keep trying just to pull them as it comes. but the house next to mine has been vacant for some time and thats where all the CC is coming from so i can't stop it! i guess i'll just keep pulling it up

    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 12:58PM
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I make a 'glove of death'!! Two plastic bags over my hand, an old fuzzy car mitt and a mixture of Round-up and Weed B Gone Max. I spray one side of the mitt and then I gently rub it on the CC, missing all of my lovely flowers. Works great! I store the mitt in a couple of ziplocks and use it again.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2008 at 8:35PM
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I have read all the entries, and I too can feel your pain ! I am going to try both the Borax and the Weed Be Gone Max suggestions and see which one is more successful. This is the Uber weed ! It has taken over our lawn and front flower bed and is attempting to take over the raised beds as well. I had never seen this offensive ivy before we bought our house. What is its origin ? ( who can we blame for giving us this pest ? )

    Bookmark   July 23, 2008 at 12:32PM
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I've had some limited success by fluffing up the CC with a garden rake before mowing. By raking it first, the lawnmower is able to catch it.

Tonight I just tried spraying a patch with Brush-B-Gon (9% triclopyr) mixed 1/2 strength. No trimec or 2,4-d or glyphosate, just triclopyr. We'll see how it works.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2008 at 1:13AM
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On Borax, a Univ. of Wisconsin researcher notes that too much boron will kill all vegetation. This chemical does not degrade, so too much and nothing will grow in that patch of soil.

Personally, I will try boron in dilute solutions until the C/C is gone. Probably in late fall, as the good Doctor recommends.


Here is a link that might be useful: Univ. of Wisconsin creeping charlie

    Bookmark   July 25, 2008 at 9:48PM
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The first information about treating CC came out accompanied with a warning to use it one time only because the boron would build up in the ground not allowing future plants to grow. There is a risk in using Borax if you have recently purchased your home (and lawn). Do you actually know that the previous owners did not treat with Borax?

I have spent my summer pulling the CC in my lawn and replanting grass--maybe a losing battle. We will try the herbicides recommended in the fall and more picking in the spring.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2008 at 4:20PM
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I live in SW Iowa. Seven years ago I didn't have any CC. My neighbor (1) with the beautifully groomed yard pointed out to me that neighbor (2) had a CC problem that was going to affect me soon so I had better keep an eye on it. Wow was he ever right. I have been treating the CC for 5 years with the Borax, sometimes mixing it too strong and killing everything. N2 comments on how awful the stuff is and that he knows he should do something about it but he never does. I even go so far as to always mow from N1 side of my lawn to N2 side with a push mulching mower so I don't track it across my yard. Now I have several plants that have popped up close to the N1 side of my yard. Can it be spread by lawn clippings that are always being blown on my yard from the N2 side and from birds droppings? I want to live peacefully with my neighbors but right now I feel like a buffer zone.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2008 at 11:06AM
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I got a terrible aversion to CC last year. My CC came from both side neighbors and is everywhere in my lawn. No one could really tell me which herbicide would work, so I started spending about an hour a day sitting or kneeling on the lawn, doing a couple square feet at at time. I use a three-pronged garden fork and my fingers to pull out the get used to finding them by touch, and then spreading grass seed in the areas left around isolated tufts of grass. I collect the CC and bag it and get rid of it. This year the areas I cleaned last year look great! I have to "patrol" the new areas and look for little bits of CC I missed, but when the new grass gets thicker, it should help a lot keeping out the CC. Doing it this way is actually calming, though labor intensive. However, it uses no poisons or chemicals.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2008 at 12:24AM
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I have creeping charlie in my hosta's which are around my fish pond which is full of fish and frogs. Is there something natural that this weed does not like.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2008 at 6:06PM
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My personal experience with Creeping Charlie:

- It grows in sun and shade. I've read elsewhere that it won't survive in full sun - WRONG. It does great in the sun.
- Borax is worthless. Don't waste your time. I've tried it and you may as well go out and pee on the lawn for all the good it does.
- Killing the whole yard may seem like a drastic step, but if you want to start fresh, and use a good turf-type fescue that will stay green and healthy even in dry periods this might be the way to go.
- Pulling it out by hand works if your yard is 100 sq ft. For anyone who has a medium to large back yard there isn't enough time in the year unless you are retired and have absolutely nothing else to do with your time. Most of us on a limited time budget need something that works without investing 10,000 hours of time pulling weeds. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Those of you who are horrified at the idea of using any type of herbicide, more power to you. IMHO, there is a time and place for other methods.
- Trimec works if you mix it up about 2 - 3 times the recommended strength and spray in the fall as the Doctor has prescribed. Mid September to October, get out and hit it then search it out again in the spring. It will be there, don't worry. It will take a couple years but you can get it under control if you're serious.
- Have not used Weed-B-Gon Max but it has the right ingredients so it should work also if applied at the right time. Again, in the fall.
- If your yard gets stressed every summer because of drought, you should really look at overseeding or slice seeding in some of the newer turf-type fescues that can survive these conditions better than the ol' KY Bluegrass. Crossfire 21 is good, there are other brands and more of them every year. A yard that has good grass is more likely to prevent these weeds from going too far. However, you will still have to spray or pull new plants to control it. Seeds get transported from anywhere and unless you and every neighbor within 50 miles have eliminated it, you will always see some starts.
- Don't give up on it. You can control it if you're willing to invest a little time and $$.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2008 at 8:56AM
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Try waiting till after a killing frost. Most problem weeds will take the treatment deep into their system. Next spring should result in a good kill of target weed.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2008 at 10:33AM
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I have creeping charlie and wild strawberrys taking over my flower beds. I have pets and don't want to harm them. What can I do to get rid of these two annoying weeds without harming my beautiful plants and pets?

    Bookmark   September 20, 2008 at 4:58PM
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I live in the Piedmont area of NC, where CC is almost universal. I wouldn't mind it so much if it did not creep into flower beds and vegetable gardens, but it climbs over barriers and burrows beneath them.I have a lot of of ajuga that has worked its way into the formerly grassy areas and I'm trying to encourage it to battle it out with the CC. I weed around the margins to give the ajuga space to spread further. In places it is thick enough to squeeze out all but a few CC runners. Has anyone had good luck with this project on a yard-wide scale? (I know many consider ajuga almost as much of a problem as CC.)

    Bookmark   October 22, 2008 at 11:27AM
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We tried many kinds of weed killers, and the Creeping Charlie in our lawn laughed at every kind UNTIL... it was pointed out to us at a garden and hardware store that we needed the Weed B Gone with the label that prominently says it kills Oxalis weeds. It is a different kind from Weed B Gone Max. We had a hard time finding the Oxalis specific formula Weed B Gone, but after several stores we got some, and my friends, it was the magic we had looked for. Charlie was gone after a couple of applications. We had tried everything from manually weeding, to plowing under whole patches of our yard, and a lot of expensive useless chemicals in between. But I'm here to say we have the problem conquered with Weed B Gone Oxalis formula. check it out at this link:

Here is a link that might be useful: Scotts/Ortho Products

    Bookmark   October 23, 2008 at 3:29PM
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I live on Cape Cod. Just this year I've found my yard infested with CC. I believe it came with some potted shrubs which I planted, so I would be on the lookout whenever you buy plants from the nursery. A rhody from Oregon was a likely suspect here. I'm about to start spraying, and will report on progress. It would be a help if others would note WHERE they live, as local conditions may affect treatment.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2008 at 8:18PM
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I live in New Jersey, and will be attempting the Borax method. I consider the source I found reliable. I will post back in a few weeks.

As an aside, our yard is 1/3 of an acre of a mixture of grasses and that stupid weed. At this point I don't care if the grass dies; the infestation is bad (we spent the last two years treating the incorrect type of weed).

Also, I did see the preference to apply in the fall, but my yard cannot wait that long. I don't want the remaining healthy areas exposed.

Here is a link that might be useful: About/ University of Minnesota

    Bookmark   April 10, 2009 at 10:24AM
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Not sure if anyone has heard of this remedy for good Old Charlie, but my lawn guy said mix Coke (Coca Cola) with Selzer and spray Charley...I did neglect to get the proportions. Most of Charley is out of my grass...due to lawn treatments but my flowerbeds and under trees are where Charley has run to. Next time the Lawn guy comes I will ask him for the proportions....last year I tried the Borax mixture under the did not work.I have not tried the Coke mixutre yet. He did mention the Coke and Selzer will kill other plants, and to spray carefully. I live in the Albany NY area.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 7:46PM
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I thought I was the only one battling this retched weed. Last year I killed off sections with Round Up. It took the grass with it. I have not noticed any new creeping charlie in those areas, but I don't want to have to do this to 7/8 of my lawn. I am going to give the Ortho Weed B Gone Max a try. I will do this soon because I know fall is the best time, but I heard right after the weed flowers is another good time to apply. I will do an update soon. Stupid Creeping Charlie

    Bookmark   April 26, 2009 at 4:53PM
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I live in the northeast(CT) and have had a large patch of CC taking over my front lawn. It was spreading rapidly to about a 20 ft. x 20 ft. section. Pulling it up was impossible and I tried some of the products from this sight except the borax. I settled on Ortho Max Poison Ivy & Touch Brush Killer (concentrate). I mixed it by the instructions and sprayed it on in 3 successive weekends when it was going dormant (Oct/Nov). By this spring I was amazed to see it was TOTALLY gone! The grass had thinned a bit due to the CC taking over, but the Ortho didn't hurt the grass at all and it's starting to fill in already. Thanks for the info and give this one a try!

    Bookmark   May 3, 2009 at 4:14PM
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I was told that pulling up the weed makes it multiply faster. You will leave roots that just propagate under ground and hundreds of new little charlies will come up later.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2009 at 8:06PM
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Chucky can't be killed!

    Bookmark   May 6, 2009 at 9:42AM
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use low vol ester at a rate of 3 to 4 oz per need achemical license to buy this at a coop or such not available any where else. talk to a farmer thats how i get mine.make sure you get every leaf wet and spray 2 to 3 feet around plant because it send out runners.usually takes 7 to 14 days to notice anything happening if not hit it again

    Bookmark   May 8, 2009 at 9:42PM
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Everything I have researched about this problems leads me to believe that pulling it out by hand is the best solution in garden area's and that's exactly what I do. It does help and my plants will not be hurt.

I use a large sharp knife and go about 1/4 inch below the soil just under the vine of CC and it does the trick. I leave the leaves that boarder my yard in place until late spring until I am finished removing anything I need to. Now
the grass area is harder. I have tried Round up - even in the fall - no worky worky. So, I have to think of something to spray on them. Thinking of beer. Beer fixes everything. If spraying it on the CC doesn't work - I will just drink the rest. (I really only can drink about half a beer so I won't be wasting).

    Bookmark   May 11, 2009 at 6:27PM
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The unfortunate reality is that unless your plans include something drastic like burning up or tearing up your lawn - as well as attacking the source (for me its neighbors on two sides of my lot) - Sir Charlie is here to stay.

There, I said it. The sooner you switch your focus from total eradication to simply hoping to control it, the happier you'll be with the semi-acceptable results you can obtain.

I have been battling Sir Charlie ever since my wife and I bought our home seven (yes, seven) years ago, and I've learned quite a bit over those years.

First: As stated, spring (when flowering) and fall (right before and right after first frost) are the best times to concentrate your assault.

When flowering, the plants are using more energy so they're susceptible to treatments. Ditto for fall; they're storing energy to prepare for winter.

Second: treat weekly during these times and roughly monthly during the summer months. Summer success for me is simply controlling the spread. Spring and fall are where you make the real inroads against this pest.

We've gone from having our back yard 30% infested when we first bought the house to about 10% now. He's never completely gone, but he is certainly under control.

Third: The only product we have found that works (and we've literally spent hundreds of dollars on different ones) is TRIMEC.

APPLICATION: We use it in a pump sprayer. Stated mix ratio is 1oz per gallon, but I routinely use 4-5 oz per gallon and have never damaged the surrounding grass.
We spot treat, covering the weeds and a 1-2 foot area around them to get the runners they send out. Do NOT use in flowerbeds; TRIMEC will kill your plants.

I've also obtained permission from both of our offending neighbors to spray 3-4 feet onto their lawns in an effort to help build a buffer zone. (My one neighbor's lawn is 60-70% infested, so you get an idea what we're up against).

I too have read about using Borax in varying concentrations. The trouble with Borax is that it will never break down (ever) and if you use too much or repeat more than once, it'll kill everything and you will NEVER be able to regrow anything..including grass...without replacing your soil. My advice is don't use're playing Russian Roulette with your lawn and might ultimately end up VERY disappointed.

I'm of the opinion that if you're to the point of considering borax, you may as well just use Roundup on the area(s), kill grass and all, and simply plan to re-seed or re-sod. Borax is forever, and if you overdose the results can be catastrophic.

Plan to get intimately familiar with your lawn and your sprayer. This is not a quick fix. There unfortunatly is no such thing as a quick fix when it comes to Sir Charlie...


    Bookmark   May 17, 2009 at 8:13AM
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Tried the stale beer in testing area. Waiting. Gave rest of beer to neighbor. (he is waiting to see if it works too)

Tired another weird solution in another area. Since I cannot apply the big weed killer stuff on my own because of chemical reactions, I am trying things that i can. Will let everyone know how it goes.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2009 at 7:46PM
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I have been hitting my lawn with Killex for about 2 weeks now and it seems to be working. Have to just keep doing it till its gone.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2009 at 7:21PM
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I have heard if you put a teaspoon or two of dawn dish soap in with your mixture of choice it kills the CC.....its suppose to stay on leaves longer and soak in. Just tried myself so don't know if it works yet.....Also sprayed by plants....we will see if it kills them or not

    Bookmark   May 22, 2009 at 10:23AM
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Until today, 2 June 2009, I solved the "Creeping Charley" problem by calling it Ground Cover. However, this Fall, I think it will return to being a Weed that mixes well with the woodland plants that are invading my yard. I was thinking of changing the Nature of my yard from Domestic to Wild, and letting anything that wanted to grow have at it. I would still mow and the wild plants could hug the ground. As long as the yard is green and of course the flowers were interesting. Thank you all for your input.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2009 at 2:31PM
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I too seemingly have solved the " Creeping Charley " issue. My accreage seems to have become overrun with the violet stunner. Iv'e chosen to say "Go-Hard" little flower and we shall live in harmony. I have pets and I really don't want my Hubby to use Borax or any other chemical that may harm our enviro. I too, shall mow and hope we can co- exist . My only question is if the infemous weed comes in any other shades ?

    Bookmark   June 6, 2009 at 3:10PM
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    Bookmark   June 30, 2009 at 1:57PM
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Trimec works! Try it...

    Bookmark   June 30, 2009 at 8:34PM
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If you want to get rid of it cheaply, use half bleach half water through a kills charlie without killing the grass. As far as gardens or flowers I haven't tried that yet.

    Bookmark   July 1, 2009 at 3:45PM
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I got SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO sick of this weed! It was showdown between us, I had tried pulling, chemicals, you name it.. I became hell-bent on removing this thing. I would lay awake at night planning my next assassination attempt. WHAT FINALLY WORKED: I found the main vines underground and took a syringe and started "shooting it up" with bleach, round up, whatever seemed harmful... My surgical strike has removed this enemy while leaving everything else intact.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2009 at 4:44PM
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CC lolled in the shade for years in our yard, then erupted everywhere the past few years. We believe it spread with our lovely new ride-on mower which throws clippings into flower beds and all over the lawn. It has not spread into the vegetable garden that is separated from the rest of the yard. We may invest in a grass catcher for the mower and spend the rest of the summer pulling CC out of garden areas and using a weed killer on the lawn itself. Perhaps this weed is just the one to use for bio-fuels as it grows everywhere easily!

    Bookmark   July 6, 2009 at 10:15AM
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I'm willing to try any and all of these treatments, BUT my concern is my dog. I'd rather have the creeping charlie if the treatments are going to hurt my puppy (little over a yr old)

    Bookmark   July 19, 2009 at 4:54PM
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After spending a couple of years, and many dollars on garden store weed killers I at last went to a Farm Supply (FS) store in the country. There I bought Crossbow concentrate, mixed a few gallons 2 1/2 oz./gal, and literally zapped Creeping Charlie. I did this in early August, and within a week the pest was gone. Crossbow did not kill the grass, but it does kill brush and small trees, so if you have volunteer maples, locust, etc. it will take care of those, too. I spot treated 3 acres which was liberally sprinkled with Charlie, and now have a hard time finding any. In fall I will hunt down any survivors and zap them, too.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2009 at 3:08PM
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During 2009, has anyone else had luck with getting rid of CC? Does the Crossbow concentrate work for others?

    Bookmark   March 23, 2010 at 12:51PM
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I have a lawn service cut my lawn. I was told that no matter how hard I try to get rid of Charlie the lawn service will bring it back every time they cut. Everyone they have visited who has Charlie is on their mowers and when they get on my lawn it gets spread. A vicious never ending circle.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2010 at 7:48PM
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I used a product called ACCESS last fall. I'd say it got rid of 90% of the Chalie. I'm noticing a few spots sprouting up this spring. I marked off my yard in grids
to spray the correct amount. I also used a generous portion when mixing. I was very pleased, and plan to spray again this spring and combine it with Weed-be-Gone Max to help eliminate the Charlie, and control my dandelions.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2010 at 9:37PM
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Very good info. Thanks everyone for their input. I've been fighting a losing battle with Charlie for the last 5 years. Using a LOT of hand pulling to keep it managed but it finally beat me and spread out of control in the last 2 years. This year is my last stand. I vow to try every chemical and solution suggested on here. Well except maybe borax, the permanent-ness scares me a bit. I've worked too hard to cultivate my perennial beds, flower gardens and pond-scape...I'd hate to kill them too. I normally try to limit chemical applications but to get rid of Charlie, I'd spray nuclear waste on my yard if it would help! We'll start with Weed B Gon for ground ivy and Weed B Gon Max and if they don't fix it, we'll move up to industrial strength stuff only found at farm supply stores. If I can't kill Charlie with all that then I'm going to formally give up, call it ground cover and enjoy a cold beverage on the porch swing. As my friend once told me "at least it's green"

Thanks again everyone for your input and experience. I'm glad to know I'm not alone in the struggle to kill Charlie. And, yes, I'm "that neighbor" who's lawn is infecting everyone around me! :(

    Bookmark   April 7, 2010 at 4:58PM
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I had a major infestation of Creeping Charlie last year. Sprayed Weed G Gon Max in the fall, just before the first frost and so far not a single CC plant has come back. I was very skeptical that one application would control it, but WOW did it work. I think it is all about timing. Hit it when it is sending sugars down to the roots and you can get good control. Also heard to try and apply when it is flowering. Good luck to all!!

    Bookmark   April 8, 2010 at 12:53PM
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We had a pony almost die from eating Creeping Charlie. Now we know it's toxic for horses, as well as other animals. Historically, it was used in beer making!

I tend to hand-pull it, as I don't use any chemicals. I don't care so much if it's in the lawn (anything green is OK) but it gets into my garden beds and drives me nuts.

Here is a link that might be useful: Brainless Knitter

    Bookmark   April 13, 2010 at 3:24PM
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Yes I have the same problem, with creeping charlie. it is next to my garage and next to that is my neighbors organic garden. what can i apply to this without it affecting the garden, but getting rid of the creeping charlie?

    Bookmark   April 15, 2010 at 10:56AM
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I have given up trying chemicals and sprays and decided it was great therapy to sit on the lawn and hand pull Creeping Charlie. See how long the "vine" you can pull. I am reducing the plants greatly. In our busy lives, it's nice to sit outside in the evenings and do this "therapy"

    Bookmark   April 15, 2010 at 11:00AM
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I have Creeping Charlie loaded in my back yard. I also had a lawn service that brought it in. Was told to try Borax but,decided not to because of the effect that it might have on my lawn.(Whats left of it.) I am going to try the Weed B Gone Max. Keep you posted.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2010 at 1:39PM
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Iowa State University Extension
Ground ivy (Glechoma hederacea) is a common weed in many lawns. Ground ivy is a Low- growing, creeping, invasive perennial. It spreads by seed and the vining stems (stolons) which root at their nodes. The Leaves of ground ivy are round or kidney-shaped with scalloped margins. Stems are four-sided. Flowers are small, bluish-purple, and funnel-shaped. Ground ivy thrives in damp, shady areas, but also grows welt in sunny Locations. A member of the mint family, ground ivy produces a minty odor when cut or crushed. Ground ivy is also known as creeping charlie.'
Control of ground ivy in Lawns is difficuLt. If the ground ivy is not completely destroyed, surviving portions wILL continue to grow and spread.
Recently, research at Purdue University investigated the effects of fertilization practices and several broadleaf herbicides on ground ivy. The research found that a good nitrogen fertility program and the use of herbicide products containing 2,4-D or tricLopyr wILL help control ground ivy. (For many years, dicamba has been regarded as the most effective herbicide in controlling ground ivy. However, the Purdue University research found that 2,4-0 and triclopyr are much more effective.)
The research also found that populations of ground ivy vary in their susceptibility to broadleaf herbicides. For example, one population of ground ivy may be highly sensitive to 2,4-D, while
another population may be somewhat tolerant to 2,4-b. - -
Ground Ivy Control Strategy
Apply 3 to 4 pounds of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet per year. Nitrogen improves the vigor and competitiveness of Kentucky bLuegrass, slowing the spread of ground ivy. An exceLlent fertilizer program for Kentucky bluegrass Lawns consists of applications of 1 pound of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet in late April/May, September, and late October/early November.
Apply a broadleaf herbicide product containing 2,4-D or triclopyr to ground ivy infested areas. 2,4-D is an active ingredient in many broadleaf herbicide products. Triclopyr can be found in Ortho Weed-B-Gon Chickweed, Clover, and Oxatis Kilter for Lawns and a few other products. Herbicide applications should be made between mid-September and November 1. Two applications are most effective. The second application shouLd be made 28 days after the first.
Since ground ivy populations vary in their susceptibility to broadleaf herbicides, it is important to alternate herbicides when attempting to control ground ivy. This article originally appeared on pages Page 1-2 of the IC-493(13) -- June 8, 2005 issue.

Here is a link that might be useful: ISU Extension

    Bookmark   April 18, 2010 at 3:22PM
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Fertilome with several application, 2 early spring and one in fall. Fairly expensive with my very large lawn, but works.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2010 at 12:02PM
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I moved into our home in 1995. Not a speck of CC. Began mowing our Church's lawns, which did have CC., and have been at war with it ever since, (losing the battle). I have tried multiple applications of Weed-B-Gone and it seemed to actually thrive on the standard version. This year, as it is now in full "glorious" bloom, I am going to hit it (in both my yard and the church yards) with Weed-B-Gone Max at 2 applications, then wait till fall and hit it again. In the late spring, will fertilize with Earl May 4 step weed preventer + feed and spread additional grass seed, so that when the weed does die, grass will take over. If anyone out there has any other suggestions, I would be glad to hear them. as far as the pond garden I have, I'm to the point of spraying Round Up and just re-plant, to get rid of it.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2010 at 3:17AM
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I have tried a number of products. Weed Out worked, although it took three applications, spring, summer and fall.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2010 at 11:25PM
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Our new house had two areas of creeping charlie. Both were small patches (thankfully), about 150 square feet each.

Being pesticide/herbicide free, I tried two different approaches. Turning over the soil in one patch, and dethatching-hand pulling in the other.

The first patch is charlie-free for two years now. It was a little unsightly turning the soil over...I left it bare for 2 months while I made sure charlie was gone. Once a week I would rake the patch and patrol the edges. I found this weed does not tolerate being buried. If the roots/stems/leaves were more than an inch below soil, it didn't surface.

The second patch was greatly reduced at first, and then came back. Initially I removed all I could find, then I topdressed and reseeded. I only topdressed 1/2 inch though...I hadn't discovered the right burial depth at that time.

I am handpulling and topdressing the second patch again, this time with a deeper layer. A few charlie sprouts make it to the surface as it follows the grass blades, or when the topdressing dries out and cracks. I've been digging up the survivors, and then pressing the soil back down after I dig out the roots. After just two weeks, the stems are already getting weak from decomposing under the topdressing. Good results so far.

I've been reading this thread for 2 years now...thanks all, I will provide another update in a few months!

    Bookmark   May 10, 2010 at 3:38AM
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Weed B Gone MAX! I live on the Chiwaukee Prairie and the creeping charlie hits us hard. It has to be Weed B Gone MAX though! last year my backyard was primarily this awful weed, but within weeks it was under control.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2010 at 11:10AM
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We moved into our house last July and our lawn is 85% CC, 5% Clover and 10% Grass.
Being in Canada, we are 100% pesticide free, so I'm pretty much screwed. I tried the Borax treatment, nada, with 3 kids and full time jobs we don't have time to hand pull. Argh, very frustrating weed.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2010 at 3:33PM
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I have read and re-read all possible entries to irrdicate Charlie! Borax seems to be my attack of choice, only because it doesn't evade my lawn as yet. I am going to use Borax in my paved and rocked areas and those areas away from desired plants. I also heard that a treatment of Corn Meal after removal of Charlie detours growth (though I have not yet tried it) I think I'm going to use borax on all my paved and bricked surfaces, who wants weeds where they dont belong? Who invented weeds anyway?

    Bookmark   May 16, 2010 at 1:08AM
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My neigbour has CC and it's trying to come over to my side. I dug a trench 3-4 inches wide down about an inch or two. I check periodically for an growth on my side. I comb the area IF I find any CC to get to the roots. So far three years and I AM WINNING THE BATTLE!!!.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2010 at 11:30AM
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Has anyone any new information on the status of research involving a rust fungus (Puccinia glchomatis) as a natural to control CC? This rust fungus, a natural control of CC in Europe where CC originates, was studied in 2001 and 2002 at Cornell. The rust fungus was found in New York naturally controlling the CC without harming other plants. 80% CC eradicated. To date (at time of research 8 years ago) they hadn't been able to effectively transfer the fungus to infect other CC and needed more experimentation to make this a promising bio-control.

I can't find anything more recent on the subject. Anyone?

    Bookmark   May 26, 2010 at 11:28PM
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I had a back yard full of creeping charlie. A neighbour who was a farmer a few years back told me he got rid of creeping charlie for good by using garden lime. I marched to the garden centre and got a bag of lime, spread it on the back yard and lo and behold, I finally said goodbye to Charlie. It really worked. It took almost three weeks but it's gone. I hope it works for everyone else out there.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2010 at 7:10PM
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You can buy borax in the laundry section of your grocery store. Be careful using it if you dont spray it just right it will kill your grass to and your lawn can go barren for up to 5 years since borax doesnt dissapate. It should kill c.c since it is more sensitive then grass to borax actually if you do it right your grass with grow better with a touch of the spray since it is a mineral they like in small amounts. I did read online while researching this that because of how the soil is in Wisconsin it usually doesnt work here depending on where you are.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2010 at 11:13AM
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I went on the Mich State University web site - They have one of the best Agriculture schools in North America .. You have to mix Ortho weed be gone max with crabgrass killer and weed be gone chickweed, clover killer in a spray tank - 1oz chickweed ( purple lable ) and 2 oz. Weed be gone max W/ crabgrass control - To one gal water in a pump sprayer - Most importantly you'll have to wait until fall season or until the creeping charlie starts to flower - otherwise you are throwing your money away . The chemicals that are most effective are QUINCLORAC- ( found in weed be gone max W/ Crabgrass prev. and TRICLOPYR- found in purple lable weed be gone - LET ME KNOW HOW IT WORKS FOR YOU ..

    Bookmark   July 26, 2010 at 3:23PM
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Well, You can try your best on your Yard, but if your Neighbors have it and won't get rid of it too? You're SOL.
I live in SE Wi. and we have alot of Summer Home Owners and they could care less about their lawns, So I do it for them.. During the Week when they are not there..

Yes, I use Scotts +2, Weed adn Feed for Grass and Dandeleins, a Seperate Treatment that Kills Crabgrass, another Sep. bag for Grubs and Weed B-Gone Max .
And Manual Digging Up any I come accross while Mowing..

Butt? When I first Bought my Place? I had the Entire Yard ( only 1/4 acre Lot) it was just Crap Dirt and Grass & Weeds.. I just STRIPPED/ Removed the 1st 4 inches of Dirt ,grass and weeds, Sprayed with Grass and Weed Killer, Graded again, added New Clean Dirt of the Right Mix and then, brought in Sod.

If you have a Older home and just bought it? Odds are the Dirt is Old and Never taken care of and you have to "rehab" it as well.. A lousy $1500 is all it took for my New Lawn and it's been 7 yrs and still looks like New.

and install Underground -pop-up sprinkers before installing the Sod..with HD water Lines , we used PVC-Pressure Tubing instead of the reg. Vynil hose lines..It's so easy to add Liquid Fertilizer, Weed and Feed, it ..Mine goes off on a Water sensor.. not a timer..and don't water with Water Softner water, run a Direct line by passing the water softner.. and we use Rain Barrels for the Garden from the Gutters..

Oh, BTW? I also mow my summer home neighbors yards- I have a Riding lawn mower, charge them $25, since I secretly Treat it , and water it with their Hose and A sprinkler,
it grows so much, They're happy to have me mow it for them.So they are really paying me to treat their lawn as well.. ;-)

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 5:05PM
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Growing up on a dairy farm and now a certified crop consultant, I see lawns (turf) as another crop. I find it rather interesting that after a quick read of the past few years of "recommendations" that no one has suggested getting a simple soil test for starters. Not having a soil test even for a lawn is the equivalent of not having a dip stick for an engine. You're just guessing.
Creeping Charlie generally likes soils that are low in pH. Some inexpensive lime (I prefer high calcium lime available at any farm supply store - generally mined in Iowa) at the right rate to bring it up to a pH around 6.8 is desired. Few lawn care companies do such tests and even fewer not the bargain priced $15 University test offered through virtually every Extension office.
If your soil has low OM (organic matter), less than 5%, then top dress - generally in the spring - with some nice compost. This may take more than one year.
Your soil and its microbes also need to be fed. If you see clover or if it's struggling, chances are it would benefit from nitrogen. I prefer to use corn gluten. It is a great source of N, is naturally organic, and also serves a side benefit as a broadleaf inhibitor. Best if applied after a rain or really heavy dew.
We have small children, have free range laying hens and pets so using a natural (non-synthetic) approach has been important. And best of all, it works.
So do yourself and the environment a favor and skip the herbicides. Search out a local extension person or even an organic lawn care service if you have other issues and address the source of the problems. Othewise you're simply treating symtoms that will continue to come back (perhaps in other forms) and is an ongoing expense. Search the web. It is pretty easy to have a great lawn that is earth friendly and won't cost you piles of money year in and year out.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2010 at 1:30PM
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I just bought a simple soil meter, I'm going to see! Great post Farmer Mike!!

    Bookmark   August 27, 2010 at 7:23PM
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Try spraying with full-strength rubbing alcohol 10-15 minutes before applying the herbicide (and I have not decided which to try). The alcohol will help break down the cuticle of the creeping charlie and, at least for everything else where I have used it, makes the herbicide more effective. Now to try on my neighbor's creeping charlie that is trying to take over my garden. Another, admittedly very inelegant, approach: aluminum flashing (the brown painted one) at least 6" below ground and 4" above ground. You can catch the monster before it climbs over, and it does not grow deep. (this even works with quack grass, but you need to go 8" down, minimum.)

    Bookmark   August 29, 2010 at 9:18PM
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A visiting friend of mine warned me a few years ago to get rid of the patch of Creeping Charlie in my backyard before it spread more. I should have taken his advice then.

I now have 75% of my backyard covered in CC, courtesy of my next-door A-hole neighbors that have a lawn that is almost exclusively weeds.

Anyway, I think I've figured out what I think is probably the best solution to remove CC from a lawn:
I'm not a fan of chemical solutions if I can help it, so my solution is a combination of physical removal with organic prevention...

Prerequisites: the underlying dirt should be damp (not soaked), so water the lawn the day before or start the day after it rains.
1. Mow the lawn. And cut it short. Simple enough, but important as it will make subsequent steps much easier and avoid pulling out good grass.
2. Go to town with a DETHATCHING RAKE. If you don't have one, buy one. See link for reference. I recommend doing a criss-cross pattern, i.e. going one direction across the entire lawn, and then repeat going perpendicular to the original effort. After having spent several hours using the hands-only method just to get rid of 10-20 sq feet, I realized I was probably fighting a losing battle. In approximately 1 hour, I removed ~200 sq feet of CC (and thatch!, and a patch clovers). What a difference! Just take your time to make sure the rake tines are getting flush with ground and pulling up those cursed CC vines. Much more effective than a gardening rake.
3. Follow up with the hand-pulling method to get anything you missed with the dethatching rake. If you've ever tried it by hand before, you'll appreciate how easy it is after dethatching, because the thatch is out of the way and most of the vines will already be pulled up for you.
4. As you should do whenever you dethatch, follow up with overseeding and slow-release nitrogen fertilizer (refer to Farmer Mike's advice on getting a soil sample, et al. for best results).
5. Keep the lawn well-watered for a couple weeks and re-fertilize after the grass starts growing in.

At least, that's what I plan to do. I will post results in a few weeks.

Here is a link that might be useful: Dethatching rake

    Bookmark   September 7, 2010 at 2:53PM
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I live near Syracuse, NY. When I first noticed CC in my yard, I pulled out every single piece I could find. Two weeks later the infested area was twice as big as when I started pulling it out. Then I got a lawn company to come and they got rid of it with their ultra-toxic chemicals. For years I was CCfree! I had a small yorkie who died of a brain tumor and no one can tell me that it wasn't caused by the chemicals. I am a lab tech and I should have known better than have all that stuff put on my lawn where my little dogs roam freely. I got rid of the lawn treatments and CC is back with a vengance. I was lurking here, trying to find a natural way to get rid of it, but I have decided that it is green and I am going to learn to love it or move! It is almost as hard to get rid of totally as 'snow on the mountain', but I am not going to put my family's or my dogs' life in jeopardy again trying to control something that refuses to be controlled. I thinkj we might as well try to eliminate mosquitoes!

    Bookmark   September 23, 2010 at 2:14PM
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Try lime and nitrogen. I tried Weed-Be-Gone on a small patch and almost killed my sheep and chickens. Will never use weed killers again.

    Bookmark   February 13, 2011 at 4:49PM
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I have a ton of the evil stuff right where my vegie garden is going. I plan to pull as much as I can, and scrape down a bit. Then lay wet cardboard over EVERYTHING, a layer of weedcloth, then pile on new dirt (CC free, please please please!!). Lots of hope, lots of mulch and a close eye, with immediate pulling at first sight, and I should not see him there... if it please the gardening gods!

One long term but nearly certain, chemical free method of eradication I know of, is to cover the area with clear plastic. This WILL kill ALL non-woody vegetation under the plastic, and some less hardy woodies too. Unfortunately you need to keep the plastic in place for a month or so, in the summer. Black plastic doesn't work, you need clear so the plants try to grow, and get fried in the intense heat under there. If I didn't need to be growing my garden this year, I'd use this method.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 5:51PM
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I was able to beat creeping charlie down in the past with Borax. I waited for a dry period before applying. The problem is that it only takes a little surviving root to reestablish itself. It is a never ending battle using chemicals.

Now I just pull it. All of the neighbors have CC too, so I pulled everything around the perimeter of the yard, waited a week for anything I missed to reappear, pulled the CC again and covered the area with landscaping fabric and mulch. I turn over the mulch once a year and pick out any shoots that come from the neighbors. I still have patches inside my yard. Every spring and fall when the roots are shallow, I pull it back farther and farther. I think I am winning.

Keep in mind that it only takes a leaf stuck in the mower to re-infect a cleared portion of the yard.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2011 at 11:21PM
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Burning it with a torch does NOT kill it. I have a ton of it growing in the river rock in my drainage ditch where it serves as a beach head to invade the rest of the lawn.

You have to SLIGHTLY burn it. If you turn it to ASH you it just resprouts from the roots. If you slightly torch it to wilt, it stops the process of photosynthesis and starts to starve off the roots. The leaf will die about a week later.

Then the roots will resprout and you do the cycle all over again. With repeated assaults, you will slowly kill more than regrows.

I've been doing it about a year and a half now and it's still a *&^(*&^*&%.

Nuke it with pesticides, pull it with your hands, burn it, do everything you can.

Pretend the leaves are the faces of people who annoy you at work. They don't go away either.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2011 at 4:12PM
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Last December my horse ingested a large quantity of Creeping Charlie and it almost killed her; still in recovery after much toxification.
We have not turned horses out in the pastures, waiting until CC blooms to treat with WeedMaster(TM) with dicamba.
Question: How long will it take to kill it (if it does) and when is it then not a risk for us to turn the horses out in the pastures?

    Bookmark   May 1, 2011 at 4:15PM
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18 months after converting my patchwork lawn to just about 100% Tall Fescue (cheap/tough K31 at that). I have so few spots of CC I just hand pull it occasionally while mowing my lawn and at that it just seems like finesse. The seed is inexpensive and has gotten the job done with several overseedings after a scorching cutting.

My strategy was to think "below ground." Kentucky Bluegrass, for example, has a shallow weak root system. One selling feature is the vigorous surface roots that enable it to spread in to bare spots. This behavior is essential identical to CC at the macro-level.

Cheap K-31 grass operates in a different manner. The roots are very deep and the plant prefers to be a bit tall (usually 4" mowings for me) not creepy. I ammended soil pretty deep in areas of poor topsoil. It germinates quickly and establishs to a "bigger" potential much later. But once established -- it is harder to kill then CC. Thats how I eliminated CC. I let the K31 get strong then beat up my lawn pretty badly but with just a few moments of consideration just prior. Mowing it short in heat, mowing at varying heights that "didn't make sense", letting it get tall for some periods. K-31 if you want cheap, extremely durable, weed-free turf --consensus is just overseed it every other year. KGB if you aim to have a prettier but very high maintance lawn requiring extra water, chemicals/organics, and attention with less need to overseed for thick turf.

My only question for some of the posts is what kind of grass and what kind of conditions exist and shooting for.

Best of luck with whatever grass species!

    Bookmark   May 12, 2011 at 1:38PM
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I live in Eastern Ontario and I have been hand picking this obnoxious weed for a few years, but with a nearly half-acre lot it is a losing battle. By spring of last year, I could see about 1/3 of my lawn was covered in Creeping Charlie. I didn't want to use harsh chemicals, so I decided to experiment with 20 Mule Team Borax. I applied the recommended amount (see link below) on one large patch in my front lawn during the late spring while the CC was still flowering. Although after a few days the CC was visibly burnt, by mid-summer it had come back.

In the early fall, I decided to increase the concentration of the Borax by about 10% and sprayed it on all the worst areas of my lawn where I could see Creeping Charlie. Now it's early summer here, and the CC appears to have been completely eradicated wherever I sprayed, and the grass is lush and green.

If hand-picking CC isn't working for you, I would give this method a try.

Here is the link for the borax recipe that I used:

    Bookmark   May 14, 2011 at 8:46AM
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Oh my gosh I laughed so hard when I read a that someone used to get rid of CC. She used a syringe and started "shooting it up" with bleach that is the funniest thing. I'm going to have to try it now. I'm sure the neighbors will think I've lost it.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2011 at 3:04PM
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Millennium Ultra 1 oz to the gallon up to 2 oz to the gal. You have to use common sense, read the instructions when it comes to animals and pets and proper protection but this will make it go away. My neighbors on both sides of me have it bad and it keeps spreading back from them as it shoots its roots from one flowering plant 6-10 ft and pops up new. This is why it is so hard to stop its roots are underground where you can't see them. My yard is free from creeping charlie other than I have to keep and eye out for strays from the neighbors yard and once a year I spray a 10' swath down each side, lots here are 150' x 700'. When I started the charlie ran all the way across the yard from lot to lot, this stuff works but do your research first as this may not be for you.

Here is a link that might be useful: Millenium Ultra 2

    Bookmark   May 19, 2011 at 11:54AM
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I have lots of creeping Charlies but one thing how can I rid of those where I have 67 peonies and 69 daylillies. Hard time for me to do all because I am over 75 yrs old. Can't do it all the work. That peonies was for years since my mother in law had it during 1950 or before. Now it is getting worse. Please help me!!!! Thank you. Alice

    Bookmark   May 20, 2011 at 10:10PM
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On my way to Mt Everest Base camp, I visited the capital of Lhasa and found CC there- it grows even in the thin oxygen. My brother found it in the deserts of the Middle East. Cockroaches are theorized to be the sole survivors of a nuclear holocaust. I disagree- CC will probably be.
My Master Gardener ex-husband now has stories to tell- I had given up, and put borders around my CC, as if I had planted it on purpose. He got quite a chuckle.
Thanks for the links- I will try the 10% borax recipe and try K31 grass. CC reminds me of the fungus Rhizupus; I've been pulling it out rhizoid by rhizoid.

    Bookmark   May 22, 2011 at 7:26PM
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I have been using Amine 400 (2-4-D)on all weeds for many years now. I first noticed CC in my yard 3 years ago. The 2-4-D definatly works, I'm just getting tired of the CC coming back every year. I am going to try spraying the entire yard (2 acres) in the fall as suggested above. I will not give up the war and will continue the stand off. I hope I live long enough!!

    Bookmark   June 1, 2011 at 5:25PM
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My lawn was full of this weed. One area in particular. I used round-up and killed all of it in that area. I waited and replanted grass seed. No sign of creeping charlie. If I do see a sprout I pick it out of my lawn. I also used Weed B Gon on the whole lawn in a sprayer. No sign of it coming back and the grass is coming in great.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2011 at 7:51AM
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I have given up and concede defeat to charlie - am moving into condo in the fall.
It pisses me off because I've been battling him for about 10 years, however i never ever felt like I was winning.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 1:13PM
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