Grass Master

Grass Weeds: Identification & Pictures

No one likes weeds in their lawn, but with so many common Ohio weeds, it’s hard to know exactly what you have and how to get rid of them. With our handy weed identification guide below, you can determine which lawn weeds are taking over your yard.

Once you’ve identified your weeds, contact Grass Master and let us take care of weed removal for you.

The Easiest Way to Kill Weeds in Your Lawn

When you’ve found a pesky weed (or several), your first thought is probably, “How do I get rid of these annoying weeds without killing my grass?” Luckily, there are several treatments available that can spot-target weeds, leaving your turf intact. Hand-pulling is another method that lets you kill weeds but not good grass, but you have to make sure to nab the intruders before their roots are too well established, and particularly before they’ve had a chance to spread seeds.

An even better option is preventing weeds from ever taking root. Pre-emergent herbicides kill weeds before they start, while a proper fertilization schedule helps healthy turf growing and thriving, blocking weed seeds from gaining a foothold.

How to Identify Common Lawn Weeds

There are several types of grass weeds common to northern Ohio lawns. The weed types below include flowering weeds as well as creeping weeds, and the photos will help you identify the troublemakers in your lawn.

Speedwell, a lawn weed


If you’ve found a purple flowering weed in your lawn, it could be Speedwell. This creeping annual weed can be most easily identified by light blue-to-purple flowers and tiny, round leaves that are bright green with scalloped edges.

wild violets are a common lawn weed

Wild Violet Weeds

This perennial weed can be easily identified by its small flowers that can vary from purple to white with heart-shaped leaves that display serrated margins. Wild violets grow in clumps and can be quite difficult to control thanks to their underground system of stems, or rhizomes.

Thistle is a lawn weed with long leaves


Thistle is a perennial weed that grows very aggressively in the hotter months and can be most easily identified by its long leaves with sharp spines. Proper mowing, along with both pre-emergent and post-emergent treatments, can be very effective against thistle.

Bittercress is a winter annual lawn weed


This annual winter weed is a member of the mustard family and can be easily identified by its light to medium green-colored central stem which ascends, branching occasionally to produce secondary stems. Look for small white flowers, too As some of the pre-emergents effective against bittercress may have an adverse affect on your lawn, prevention can be a more effective tool and includes proper mowing and fertilization in the spring.

Black medic is an annual grass weed

Black Medic

This annual summer weed can be best identified by its three clover-like leaflets and tiny, bright yellow flowers. Black medic can flower from May through September and thrives in poor soil, so take soil condition into account when caring for your lawn.

Knotweed is a lawn weed with many slender stems


The knotweed is an annual weed that can be most easily identified by its numerous slender wiry stems and blue-ish green, narrow oval-shaped leaves. Knotweed loves tough, compacted soil, which should be a reminder to aerate your lawn regularly.

Dandelions are a common lawn weed known by bright yellow flowers

Dandelion Weeds

This broadleaf weed can be most easily identified by its yellow bloom and hollow stalks. A dandelion weed completes its seeding stage within 5-8 weeks with a puff of white — that’s the pappus, a feathery feature that help carry its seeds away on the breeze.

Oxalis is recognizable by its three heart-shaped leaflets


This perennial weed, also known as Yellow Woodsorrel, can be most easily identified by its three somewhat-folded heart-shaped leaflets with yellow flowers. Oxalis can be found in all types of conditions and can be controlled with herbicides as well as proper lawn fertilization and mowing.

Crabgrass is a tough lawn weed that spreads across the ground


Crabgrass sprawls low across the ground from one central root, featuring spreading stems with wide, flat leaf blades that lie on the ground with ascending tips. You’ll see crabgrass spreading in late spring.

Spurge is a lawn weed that grows in a mat


This annual weed can easily be identified by its flat, mat-like growth and purplish splotched leaves. It’s best to take care of spurge while the plant is still young.

Buckhorn Plantain is a lawn weed with long, slender leaves

Buckhorn Plantain

This perennial weed can be most easily identified by its long slender leaves (approximately one inch across) and its slender spike at the tip.

White clover is a lawn weed that sprouts white flowers

White Clover

The white clover weed can be most easily identified by its three trifoliate egg-shaped leaf stems and white flowering nodes. A quite adaptive plant, you may find white clover especially in weak parts of your lawn.

Nutsedge looks very similar to grass, but it is a grass weed with a tuber at its base


This popular perennial sedge is commonly mistaken for grass and can be most easily be identified by its cross-sectioned root system that’s arranged in sets of three from the base and nut-shaped tuber at the bottom.

Ground ivy is a perennial creeping lawn weed

Ground Ivy

This perennial creeping weed can be easily identified by its heavily veined appearance and round, scalloped edged leaves. Low-growing and creeping, this weed is best controlled by herbicides.

Purslane is a creeping annual lawn weed with paddle shaped leaves


This low-lying creeping annual weed also called little hogweed, can be most easily identified by its thick, round reddish stems and paddle shaped leaves.

Chickweed is a lawn weed with tiny, pointed leaves


This annual weed can be most easily identified by its tiny pointed oval un-toothed leaves and slender delicate stems with tiny white flowers. Look for it in areas of disturbed soil and damp, cool areas.

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