Common chickweed (Stellaria media)
Common chickweed is often found in container-grown nursery ornamentals because it favors well-watered areas. It forms a mat and may climb into the canopy of nursery crops. A winter annual, chickweed prefers the cool weather of fall, winter and early spring, but may persist into summer. Its leaves are opposite, oval and pointed at the tips. Its stems run prostrate along the ground, rooting at the nodes, with the upper half erect and freely branching. The leaves (without hairs) and stems (with rows of hairs) are light green. Distinct white flowers grow alone or in clusters at the ends of the stems. Flowers are small and consist of five deeply lobed petals.
Chickweed is a prolific seed producer and will spread if hand-weeded. It also is a known reservoir for insect pests and plant viruses. Chickweed should be controlled before it flowers, but can be difficult due to the short period between germination and flower production. Apply Snapshot® specialty herbicide to established ornamentals any time prior to germination of chickweed, or immediately after cultivation. Snapshot bonds tightly with soil particles and has low solubility in water, so it won’t move out of the application zone. Dimension® 2EW specialty herbicide also can be applied over the top or as a directed spray to established ornamentals for preemergence control.
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