Ask a Question
Notify Me On Question Update
Email this Question
Do you have some advice on how to control mallow weeds? This has been an ongoing problem that even the powerful herbicides can only contain for just a few weeks. They always come back and completely overrun my garden. Any advice?
Rate This FAQ
As you have discovered, a mature mallow weed is quite tolerant of most yard-and-garden herbicides, including Roundup and 2,4-D. The herbicides often cause mallow to go yellow, and some of the plants may die; but many eventually recover to become even tougher than they were before they were sprayed.
You probably also have found that pulling, hoeing or rototilling large mallow plants is difficult and only partially effective. Then, there is also the problem of mallow seeds in the soil. Mallow is a prolific seed producer, and its seeds can lay dormant in the soil for years before germinating. In a typical garden there are thousands and thousands of mallow seeds already in the soil just waiting for the right time and conditions to germinate. Whenever those conditions occur, a few new mallow seedlings will emerge; but the majority of the seeds remain dormant awaiting a future opportunity.
Each time it rains or whenever the garden is irrigated, a few more mallow seeds will germinate. So, even if you were successful in killing all of the emerged mallow plants with a single herbicide application, a new flush of seedlings would still appear after each watering or rainfall event for the next several years.
The best advice I can give is to be persistent, and to kill or remove mallow plants when they are small. The strategy is to deplete the soil of its mallow seed supply by eliminating all emerging mallow plants before they have a chance to make more seeds and replenish the supply in the soil. Pulling, hoeing or rototilling can be very effective against small mallow plants. Mallow is also much more sensitive to herbicides when in the seedling and early vegetative stages (before plants get more than two or three inches wide).
Whichever control method you choose, do it early in the development of the weeds. That's when they are easiest to control, and it's the only way to deplete the soil seed supply. It will probably take several years of weeding every couple of weeks before you see the results of reducing the number of dormant mallow seeds in the soil. But in the long run, I believe that's the only way to make real progress.
Submit Your Suggestion
Other Questions In This Topic
- How do I know when to pick my fruit?
- I have 2 cottonless cottonwoods in my back yard. They are both about 7 years old. I noticed this spring that the trees have really grown tall but on the main limbs in the middle of the trees there are no limbs coming from them. I also find little pieces of new branches all over my lawn like they have come off right at the base where they connect to the tree. There are also at those points little scabs of some kind right where the branch has broken off. What is wrong and can I save these trees? I grew this kind of tree because they are fast growing trees and I wanted to enjoy some shade while I was still around to enjoy it. I am so afraid that there is something seriously wrong and those years will be lost. Can you help me with the info I have given you? I would appreciate it so much if you have an idea of what is wrong and what I can do to fix it.
- Due to the dry season, the weeds are overtaking our lawn. Besides watering, is there a weed killer I can apply when it is so hot? Is there a fertilizer or food that would help it?
- I am wondering if I have some sort of fungus in my lawn.
- When will my flowering shrubs bloom, and when should I prune them and my evergreens?
- How can I tell when my pears are ripe?
- I am looking for a native grass, or a grass that behaves as a native, does not need irrigated once established, does not need mowed, for a hill in a St.George back yard. Cottonwood trees shade the area but it also gets sun. I was going to use Buffalograss seed, but some people at a nursery in St.George said that it is too hot for Buffalograss. Do you have any suggestions?
- I have a 25-foot tall scrub oak that appears to be dying. If it is anthracnose that is killing it, can it be saved? There are some commercial, injectable products that claim success. Is it possible?