I’ve mentioned before that weeding can offer it’s own zen moments, the time you can let your mind relax and wander as you ease the weeds out of your garden bed. Providing your garden bed has adequate moisture to allow the ease. However, there a couple of weeds that challenge my thinking!
One of them is the Common Mallow. While it could be considered pretty with it’s scalloped leaves and white to lavender colored flowers that creep across the ground, it is far more likely to be annoying. This plant will continue to creep further and further into the areas you don’t want it. Once that’s happened, it’s really tough to get rid of. You thought Creeping Charlie was bad, common mallow can develop a deep taproot although there’s a discrepancy with how long that taproot is. I’ve had reports of up to 2 feet long while others say it’s more shallow. Doesn’t matter, trying to yank this guy out of the ground will help you develop your glut muscles as well as tighten your jaw not matter how long it is!
The plants flower from June through Autumn and continue to produce seeds. That’s the surest way it gets a hold of your landscape but it will also develop roots from broken stems.
If you have a small infestation, then keep mowing it down to prevent the flowers from going to seed. Post-emergent herbicides with glyphosate, such as Round-up, are best applied to small plants and could take several applications to get rid of the stuff, this herbicide will kill any plant in the area, so you’ll want to apply it carefully with a sponge brush on a windless day. 2,4,D is another herbicide that can weaken the common mallow and allow you a better chance of hand pulling and killing it. I may be a friend of creeping Charlie but I draw the line at Common Mallow. The University of Minnesota has a great site called “Is this plant a weed?”. Be sure to check out my website Garden Bite with Teri Knight for more information and like my Facebook Page.