Grass Master

Common Weeds in Ohio: Identification & Pictures

No one likes weeds in their lawn, but with so many common weeds in Ohio, 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 Common Weeds in Ohio Lawns

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 a 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 grow and thrive, blocking weed seeds from gaining a foothold.

How to Identify Common Ohio 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. The photos will help you identify the troublemakers in your lawn.-

blooming Speedwell weed with round purple flowers and scalloped green leaves


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

group of Wild Violet Weeds with small heart-shaped purple leaves

Wild Violet Weeds

This perennial weed blooms in Ohio during early spring 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 around shady, damp areas of your lawn and can be quite difficult to control thanks to their underground system of stems, or rhizomes.

thistle weed with a single bright pink, spiky bloom and other spiky green bulbs with pink crowns about to bloom from stems with long leaves and sharp spines


Thistle is a perennial weed that grows very aggressively in the hotter Ohio 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 weed with a thin green central stem and thin, brown secondary stems with white flowers beginning to bloom from the central stem


This annual Ohio 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 and branches occasionally to produce secondary stems. Look for small white flowers, too. As some of the pre-emergents effective against bittercress may have an adverse effect on your lawn, prevention can be a more effective tool and includes proper mowing and fertilization in the spring.

Black Medic weed with its clover-like leaves in groups of three with yellow pom-pom flowers about to bloom

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 Ohio lawns with poor soil, so take soil condition into account when caring for your lawn.

Knotweed with many wiry stems and green, oval-shaped leaves


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 to grow in Ohio’s tough, compacted soil, which should be a reminder to aerate your lawn regularly.

field of dandelion weeds with green hollow stalks and yellow flowers blooming

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 helps carry its seeds away on the breeze. These weeds are very common in Ohio because they will grow regardless of soil conditions and are able to withstand cold Ohio winters.

cluster of oxalis weed with long, thin stalks and three heart-shaped leaflets coming from each stalk with some stalks ending in blooming, bright yellow flowers


This perennial weed grows throughout Ohio and is also known as Yellow Woodsorrel. This weed 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 growing through asphalt with wide, flat, green leaf blades


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 spreads prolifically through Ohio lawns in late spring.

spurge weed growing in a mated, circular shape with red steams and green, oval-shaped leaves with splotches of purple


This annual Ohio 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. Typically, you will find the weed beginning to grow in early spring.

Buckhorn Plantain weed with long, wide, lance-shaped leaves that have prominent veins ending in a pointed tip and a few stalks with flower clusters that have not bloomed

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. This weed can be found in both wet and dry Ohio soils during the summer and early fall.

white clover weeds with white flower nodes and trifoliate egg-shaped leaf stems

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 Ohio weed, you may find white clover especially in weak parts of your lawn.

Nutsedge weed with a yellowish seed head and thin, light green leaves that come to a point and give the grass weed a distinctive V shape


This popular perennial sedge is commonly mistaken for grass in most Ohio lawns but can 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 growing close to the ground with round, scalloped edged leaves with a tinge of red and some funnel-shaped, lavender-colored flowers

Ground Ivy

This perennial creeping weed grows in damp, fertile Ohio lawns and 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 growing close to the ground with red stems and paddled-shaped leaves with some bright yellow flowers beginning to bloom


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. This weed can be found throughout Northeast Ohio due to its resilience.

chickweed with small, green oval-shaped leaves and tiny white petal flowers beginning to bloom at the ends of the brownish, green stems


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

Learn More About Our Lawn Care Services

Just fill out the short form below to get started!

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.