En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Friday - September 24, 2010

From: Victoria, VA
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Invasive Plants
Title: Large weed removal in Victoria VA
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have a weed problem. Along my house and garage are several weeds that have grown to small-tree size. I plan to rip them out of the ground as soon as it cools off, but I've done this before and they always come back. I'm committed to not using chemicals, but what else can I do to keep those weeds from coming back? Thanks! p.s. -- I live in southern Virginia, zone 7

ANSWER:

We would say the first mistake you made was letting those weeds get that big! Whatever they are, if they are as big as a tree, you are way behind the curve. Learn to recognize what the seedlings look like, and rip them out before they get so big. They probably germinate or come up from suckers, depending on what plant it is, and emerge in the Spring. It is also cool enough to work in the garden then, and much easier.

We would suggest you contact the Lunenburg County Extension Office to see if they can tell you what the plant is. If it is an annual, your first priority is to keep it from seeding, and then pull out the seedlings as soon as they emerge. Seedlings can wait their turn in the soil for a long time, so this will be a continuing process. If is a perennial, coming up from roots every year, then you need both to get those roots out of the ground AND prevent seeding.

 

More Invasive Plants Questions

Plants for delineating property line
July 18, 2010 - I have a neighbor who does not mow his grass or take care of a strip that runs between my property and his. I would like to plant some inexpensive, low maintenance, shrubs, that would do well in full...
view the full question and answer

Why are our Euphorbia myrsinites plants dying in Soquel, CA?
August 02, 2010 - Some of our Euphorbia myrsinites die in our garden for reasons we cannot understand. Do you have any explanation or suggest area we should be looking for?
view the full question and answer

Removing bermudagrass from buffalograss in Smithville TX
May 01, 2013 - I have a lawn created two years ago with buffalo grass sod in Smithville, TX. Recently several areas of bermudagrass have started to flourish in the buffalo grass lawn. Can you recommend a herbicide...
view the full question and answer

Can a mustang grape and an oak coexist in Austin
November 04, 2009 - I have a healthy mustang grape vine growing on an oak in my yard. While the vine provides plenty of good food and a pleasant environment for many birds throughout the year, I feel it is overtaking the...
view the full question and answer

Removal of invasive mints
March 30, 2005 - How do I remove common mint from my garden? I removed the previous years plants and tilled the soil. This year they came back more than before.
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center