The morning glory plant (Ipomoea lacunosa) can be a pain in the neck to get rid of from your lawn. The plant has a complex root system that can grow vines up to 20 feet long, which makes it difficult to uproot by hand.
To clear out the weed, you can either pull out the plants from the roots manually or go the chemical way and spray them with herbicides to kill them. The best time to spray morning glory is after mowing the lawn when the cuts on the vines are still fresh.
However, the roots of the morning glory plant contain numerous growth buds that continue to grow even after the main plant has been killed off. This is what makes it a hassle to do away with.
Getting rid of morning glory from your lawn is difficult, but not impossible. Read on to find out how to get rid of morning glory in lawn.
In some parts of the world, the morning glory plant is a lovely flowering plant that is used to decorate gardens.
However, some species of the plant are considered invasive, and do more harm than good to lawns. The morning glory plant usually spreads its vines along the ground, therefore it can choke any plants growing around it.
It has a fast growth rate as well, which means that if you don’t get rid of it as soon as you notice it, it may end up covering your lawn in a matter of days.
How to Get Rid of Morning Glory in Lawn
Getting rid of morning glory is not a one-day project. It is a long-term commitment that requires a ton of effort. You will need several tools for the job and might also end up investing in other products as well.
There are two major ways of killing off the morning glory weed.
- Using herbicides
- Manually uprooting the vines.
While both methods are effective, the latter tends to work better in the long run.
Before you settle for herbicides, you should note that these are chemicals, and they will not discriminate between your plants and weeds. You should only use this solution over a wide area of weeds.
If the morning glory plant is mixed up with other plants you may want to keep in your lawn, then consider a different method to get rid of the invasive weed.
The best herbicides that can work to remove morning glory weeds include
- 2% Glyphosate
Spraying the morning glory vines with herbicides once won’t permanently get rid of the weeds. Instead, it will control the growth of the plant on the surface. To permanently rid yourself of the invasive weed, you need to come up with a spraying schedule.
Once you identify morning glory on your lawn, spray regularly with intervals of about two weeks to completely clear it out. Morning glory is a stubborn weed and you may need to apply other techniques as well.
Remember, most of these herbicides are non-selective and will affect every plant they touch.
On the topic of chemicals, you can also use bleach to get rid of morning glory. Dilute the bleach to the required amount and carefully spray onto the vines of the weed to permanently kill it. The bleach will also affect any plants it lands on, so be careful when handling it.
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2. Manually Uprooting the Vines
Due to the nature of the growth of the morning glory plant, it can be hard to spray all the vines with herbicides. An alternative method of dealing with the weed is by pulling it up from the ground by the roots.
This method, however, requires a lot of persistence and patience, as you will not get rid of the weed in just one gardening session. If the plant has grown over a wide area, you may need to mow the lawn regularly and combine with spraying herbicides to control the growth of the weed in lawn.
There are a couple of things to keep in mind before you begin fighting this weed on your lawn.
First, the morning glory plant loves climbing up vertical structures. This applies to other plants as well. You should take a walk around your lawn and inspect any areas with tall plants or structures like taps, hedges, and lamps. Walk along the edge of your fence and take note of any vines growing around there.
Second, the morning glory plant grows very quickly. This means you will be pulling out the vines every so often. Since it has a lot of root nodes that can sprout into other plants, it’s going to be a hassle if you leave any vines on the ground for too long.
Third, the seeds are a menace. If you intend to get rid of morning glory, you need to do it before it reaches its flowering phase. The seeds of the morning glory plant are quite a handful, and they can germinate even after fifty years.
Whichever method you settle on to fight morning glory, you need certain tools to make your work easier.
If you decide to go with herbicides, you will need:
- A knapsack sprayer
- A pair of gloves
- Safety gumboots
- An overall
- Safety goggles
- A safety mask
Herbicides are chemicals, and they may contain substances that can affect your skin or respiratory system. Cover yourself up properly by wearing the right attire for the job.
Don’t touch the herbicides with your bare hands. Remember to spray in the direction the wind is blowing towards to avoid inhaling droplets of the herbicides.
Also read: Will 2,4-d kill bermuda grass
If you decide to manually pull out the weed, you will still need a few tools
- A gardening trowel
- A pair of gloves
You’re bound to get dirty with this method, so you can wear an overall as well.
- First, identify the vine locations and if possible, mark them.
- Second, trace the vine’s origin, gently untangling any creepers back to the main stem.
- Next, dig out the area around the stem to expose the roots.
- Hold the morning glory vines and stem and yank it out by the roots.
- Dig out the area to expose any remaining vines and roots, and remove them as well.
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Finally, remember to carefully dispose of all the vines. A freshly cut vine can still develop a root system of its own and sprout into another plant.
Follow the above steps with a one to two weeks interval until you permanently lay waste to the weed.