Winter has a huge impact on various plants and weeds in many areas. But do weeds die in the winter?
Most people may not be aware of what happens during the winter season. Most people despise weeds because of the need to constantly pull them out of the lawn, but do they really die during winter?
Here we’ve listed some basic facts that will help you understand weed management and what happens to weeds during winter.
Fall is the Best Time to Prevent Weeds
Taking care of your garden and lawn properly in the winter and fall can prevent weeds when spring comes. If you’ve bare areas in your lawn, ensure that you over-seed and water them. Weeds mostly invade areas where the grass is scarce and has weak roots. Heavy grass coverage will bring competition and prevent weeds from accessing sunlight and nutrients.
Do Weeds Die in the Winter?
Cold weather reduces the activity of weed growth. So it is safe to say that weeds die in the winter, and it would be great news that the all-summer struggle with weed growth is finally over.
Weeds begin their life cycle in late summer to early fall, so the winter approach is not a reason to be careless.
Winter Cannot Kill the Seeds
Most weed seeds are enclosed in a protective shell, which makes them immune to spraying and winter. With the right conditions (correct temperature and sunlight), the seeds will start to germinate. When winter ends, exposure to sunlight can result in the growth of another batch of weeds.
How Should I Deal with the Weeds?
There are different ways you can use in your lawn or garden to eliminate weeds. The first thing is to identify the weeds that have invaded your lawn. This will help you to determine the best method to kill them. Some weeds can be pulled from the ground, and you won’t have to worry about them anymore. Others have underground runners that need to be dealt with, or the weeds will return.
After identification, you should use manual removal using specialty tools, picks, and trowels, remove them and dispose of them in the trash.
Chemicals are also effective in weed removal, but you should determine the weed first to help you choose the right herbicides. Not all weed killers are effective during winter, and you don’t want to waste your time and money using ineffective products. Therefore, before trying any method, make sure to research widely.
Related: Best Winter Garden Hoses
Tips for Using Post-emergence Herbicides
- Apply on actively growing seeds
- Don’t mow 24 to 48 hours before and after application
- Don’t irrigate your lawn after application
- Make sure you apply when the weeds are susceptible, small weeds are easy to control than mature plants.
Herbicides should be a last resort. Herbicides can be harmful, so ensure you read the manufacturer’s instructions before application and store the product as per the label’s instructions.
You can also use organic solutions. Apply white vinegar for spot-treating weeds. Use a spray bottle and spray it directly to the weeds to eliminate them. Vinegar also eliminates crabgrass and dandelions, which flourishes from spring to fall. If you find them during winter, use a vinegar solution to ensure it doesn’t emerge again in the spring.
Most lawn weeds start their growth in winter. This is the best time to start creating a weed-free lawn through the summer and spring seasons. The best way to keep your lawn weed-free is by maintaining a dense turfgrass stand. However, you should choose a turfgrass species according to your location and intended use. A turf grass that suits its environment requires less maintenance and weed invasion. Maintain proper soil aeration, moisture, fertility, and mowing at the right height.
Maintaining a thick and healthy lawn, whether in cool or warm-season grass, is an effective way to reduce winter weed invasion. You can also use pre-emergent herbicides in the fall to prevent seed germination. However, if you want to over-seed, a pre-emergent will prevent your seeds from germinating. Therefore, the right time for post-emergent herbicide is in early spring or fall. During this time, weeds are young and growing, making them easy to control.
If you want to minimize your lawn care problems in summer and spring, carry out all the preventative actions in winter. You can also spread a layer of fertilizer. Some fertilizers can fertilize your lawn and remove weeds at the same time. However, ensure that the product is compatible with your lawn grass.
So, do weeds die in the winter? Yes, they do. However, you cannot depend entirely on weather to get rid of weeds in your lawn. Winter biennials, annuals, and perennials can withstand winter and leave seeds before they die. These persistent weeds are determined to come back to life come spring. Killing weeds needs some effort and vigilance.