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 types of weed(s) in your lawn are taking over.

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 Lawn Weeds

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 Ohio Weeds in Your Yard

There are several types of weeds common to northern Ohio lawns. The weed types below include flowering weeds as well as creeping weeds. We’ve also provided lawn weed pictures that will help you identify the troublemakers that may appear in your yard.


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.

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 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.


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

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.


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.

Dandelion Weed

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.


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 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.


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

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

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.


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

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.


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.


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.

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