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The Best Way To Get Rid of Ground Ivy

Image result for ground ivy

Several lawn owners have contacted us wanting to know the best way to deal with ground ivy as it has been mucking up their nice lawns. Ground ivy is another one of those difficult to control weeds that is high up on the annoyance scale with the likes of ragweed and dandelions. Having an outbreak of this invader on your lawn is a good indicator that your grass does not have the ideal conditions to thrive and thus, ground ivy (also known as creeping Charlie) thrives instead. However, before you throw in the towel in frustration, resort to this guide on controlling ground ivy as our Solutions experts have some tips and tricks on how to eliminate this invasive weed from your lawn.

As always, before we approach a plan of attack regarding ground ivy (or ANY weed for that matter) it’s best to learn about the weed, it’s tendencies and it’s ideal conditions. Once we know what makes this weed tick, we can do all we can to choke out the weed and deprive ground ivy of what it enjoys.


Background Information on Ground Ivy

Ground Ivy (Glechoma hederacea) is known by a few other creative names like 'Creeping Charlie', 'Creeping Jenny' and 'Gill-Over-the-Ground'. It is a common perennial, evergreen weed found across the United States which thrives in shady, moist areas in low-wooded habitats, along roadsides, and in disturbed sites. From such places it can easily invade home lawns and can quickly crowd out the more desirable turfgrass. What gives it the name “creeping Charlie” is it’s tendency to creep along the soil surface and form roots where the leaves join the stem.

This invasive weed can be easily identified by it rounded leaves with scalloped edges. The plant also sprouts out a small purple flower. Another way it can be identified is through its growth habit. Ground Ivy s a essentially a vine which tends to grow close to the ground and will form a mat-like ground cover if allowed to. The vines have nodes at each of the places where leaves grow and these nodes will form roots if they come in contact with the soil. This makes ground ivy especially hard to control via hand-pulling as every rooted node will form a new plant into the soil.


How To Get Rid of Ground Ivy

If you wondering how to kill ground ivy, this section has all the answers you need. As we’ve learned from the background information, ground ivy loves shade and moisture. So before going in the herbicide route, make sure to try to trim back shady areas wherever possible. Also, get to the bottom of the moisture issue by correcting any drainage problems as well as testing for and correcting any pH problems. Another good idea to consider is perhaps changing your grass out to one that is more shade tolerant.

With ground ivy’s presence being a sign that your lawn isn’t as healthy as it should be, make sure to adapt and use proper mowing, watering and fertilizing practices when caring for your lawn. By become more health conscious towards your lawn, you will have a thick, nutrient-rich lawn that will choke out ground ivy and any other invasive weed that tries to creep onto your lawn.

Recommended Herbicides:


Solutions recommends the above herbicides to best control ground ivy in order of effectiveness. From our tests, we’ve observe that Triclopyr is the formulation which provides the best control. While ground ivy is a broadleaf weed, most broadleaf weed killers don’t work on this particular weed. We’ve also included a 3 way herbicide mainly because it contains dicamba which is another chemical that works well to suppress ground ivy.

The best time to conduct treatment with herbicides is in the early fall when ground ivy is growing most actively and when daytime temperatures have dropped to the 60s or low 70s. Make sure to check the rain forecast to make sure it won’t be raining for 48 hours following the application of your selected herbicide. Also be sure to read the product label carefully to determine the proper application rates for your lawn size and the reapplication schedule if it is necessary.

Ground ivy frequently grows in the shady areas near trees or shrubs. In these areas, we recommend spraying only to wet the leaves of the ground ivy and make sure not to soak the ground to avoid uptake of the herbicide by the roots of the woody plants. Any woody or broad-leaf plant that comes into contact with an herbicide may be damaged or killed.

Always be cautious when handling and using any herbicide; do not spray during hot or windy weather to avoid any herbicide drifting onto desirable plants. And before using any chemical, especially herbicides, please read the label completely and follow all the manufacturer's directions carefully.


Ground Ivy Control Tips and Recommendations

  • Before applying herbicide, make sure to mow your lawn first. This will cut down some of the grass that is in the way and also it will damage the ground ivy and open them up a bit to soak in the herbicide treatment.

  • Use a hand-pump sprayer with a thin tip nozzle. Spraying a fine mist is best when applying herbicides to ground ivy.

For more information on controlling ground ivy on your lawn and to get advice catered to your unique issue from experts, contact us at askapro@solutionsstores.com or call our customer service line at (800) 479-6583.

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