While Oxalis can be very nice in appearance, it can really destroy the look of your lawn. There are dozens of types of Oxalis, and many are sold and planted purposely as landscape plants. However, when it comes to the invasive weed you see in your lawn, Oxalis simply does not belong.
Dealing with Oxalis
The type of Oxalis that shows up in turfgrass is also known as Yellow or Creeping Wood-Sorrel, and can be tricky to control.
About Oxalis – While not all species of Oxalis are considered weeds, once it has taken residence in your lawn it becomes one. Flowers from Oxalis can be seen almost year round and can be in a variety of colors but are most commonly yellow. This weed produces small seed pods containing 10-50 seeds in each. Oxalis is often confused for Clover, but has heart shaped leaves while clover has oval shaped leaves. There are also slight differences in seed pods but the small yellow flowers are the biggest and easiest difference to see.
How did THAT get into my lawn? – Oxalis spreads through the lawn by every way possible! It is adapted to thrive in practically every condition making it very hard to control. This weed grows rapidly by seed and spreads quickly as it matures. In fact, if you find Oxalis that has taken over a potted plant container there is a good chance that it is all one plant! This weed also produces many many MANY seeds. When other weeds release seeds, they could sit in the soil for years and years and never have the right conditions to germiniate. Oxalis is not like other weeds. Their seeds rapidly mature and there is no condition that will prevent them from doing so.
What can I do? – DO NOT PULL OXALIS! While this is important for every weed you find in your lawn, it is especially important for Oxalis. The fragile root systems of this plant snap too easily for removal and the remaining parts will spread even quicker. In fact, in an area where you may have been dealing with only one plant stemming off, by breaking its roots you have created more plants that will stem off and thrive despite your best efforts! BE AWARE: there are sites out there that will tell you to pull this weed. While it may be an easy task for other areas of our nation or in Europe, our service area is full of dense clay soils and this weed will not come quietly! WE REPEAT: DO NOT PULL THIS WEED! Herbicides are the best choice when it comes to dealing with Oxalis. Multiple treatments are going to be required and if your lawn is suffering from this invasive pest you may need to set up a FREE service call 2 weeks after your last treatment. The key to controlling Oxalis is consistent applications of weed control. Keeping your lawn healthy and vigorous is a must when it comes to weed control. Weed control and fertilizing go hand in hand to create the best conditions for a healthy, green lawn!
These plants are remarkably vigorous, tolerant, and fast growing — too bad they also are unwanted. Learn the weeds most familiar to lawns in this area, the conditions that sustain them, and techniques to control them.