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Five Common Lawn Weeds – Identification and Treatment

It is always easier to control weeds from the outset rather than try to remove them once they get out of hand. By choosing a suitable lawn species for your area, keeping it healthy, well maintained and at the right mowing height for your chosen variety, you’ll have a leg up on the neighbours.

Identify and remove weeds early – dig them out by hand when they are young, small and easy to remove. Once they get larger it becomes harder and if they set seed they can spread all over your lawn and garden – bad news.


Gamochaeta galviceps

  • Flat, shiny, mid-green leaves with a rosette shape
  • Various small flowers on stems
  • Fibrous roots
  • Control – hand removal and spot spray herbicide
  • Difficult to kill due to glossy leaves
  • May need two or more sprays


Taraxacum officinale

  • Toothed leaves, light green
  • Milky sap, rosette shape
  • Solitary, double yellow, daisy like flowers on hollow stems
  • Thick contractile fleshy tap-root
  • Control – hand removal and spot spray herbicide

Bindii (jo-jo)

Soliva pterosperma

  • Possibly the most annoying lawn weed due to the pain caused by the seeds to bare feet
  • Finely dissected, small, fern like leaves, light green in colour
  • Flat, small compact rosettes
  • Small green flowers deep in leaf axis
  • Fine, fibrous roots
  • Small brown, flat seeds with sharp spines that hurt bare feet
  • Control – hand removal or selective Bindii herbicides in winter or early autumn before the plant sets seed
  • Easily managed if tended to early

Creeping Oxalis

Oxalis corniculata

  • Small, light green, clover like leaves on short petioles
  • Small, yellow, bell shaped flowers
  • Forms new roots wherever stems touch the ground, creeping under and through lawn
  • Thin tap-roots
  • Very difficult to remove as crown breaks off leaving roots for re-growth
  • Very invasive, nasty weed
  • Control – hand remove small plants
  • Dig out section of lawn
  • Herbicide for larger infestations


Trifolium spp.

  • Clover shaped, green leaves with circular markings, on thin stems
  • Small white flowers, ball shaped on stems with leaves
  • Tap-roots off stolons
  • Is a weed in lawn but in other areas can be beneficial due to high nutritional value
  • Four leaved plants are very lucky, so don’t poison those!
  • Control – hand removal and selective herbicide

Lawn Weed Treatment

Hand removal


Many small weeds may be carefully pulled out by hand. However you will need to make sure you have removed the roots. Using a weeding trowel or long handled, mechanical device and prizing around the roots will help ensure total removal. The bigger the weed, the bigger and stronger the roots. In some cases, a weed spray might be necessary.



There are various herbicides available, including selective and non-selective. Non-selective products kill most plants including your lawn; selective herbicides target specific weeds only.

It is strongly recommended that your consult your local nursery or turf expert to properly identify the weed in question first, so you can treat it with an appropriate and effective spray.

You will also need to check the suitability of the selected herbicide product for use on your lawn type. For example, many are not suitable for buffalo lawns. Lawn Solutions Australia carry a wide range of weed and pest control products for buffalo and other lawn varieties.

Remember to always follow manufacturer’s instructions on the pack.