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Dandelion Season SDSU Extension Has Some Tips to Help with Control

BROOKINGS, S.D. – Throughout the state, dandelions are running a couple of weeks behind normal, but they are starting to show. If herbicide wasn’t applied last fall, there are still a few things South Dakotans can do to control the yellow-flowered weed said Paul Johnson, SDSU Extension Weed Science Coordinator.

“Dandelions thrive on cool damp weather. Dandelion is a perennial that can produce multiple flowers. With a large plant more than 50 flowers have been found to be produced with several seeds per flower,” Johnson said.

“Dandelions thrive on cool damp weather. Dandelion is a perennial that can produce multiple flowers. With a large plant more than 50 flowers have been found to be produced with several seeds per flower.”

— Paul Johnson, SDSU Extension Weed Science Coordinator

He explained although spring treatments are not as effective as fall, they can be used to stop the yellow flowers from producing viable seed.

Application tips

  1. Read and follow all directions and wear proper protective clothing.
  2. Herbicide treatments can be used either as a weed and feed type granule or as a liquid spray.
  3. The chemicals must enter thought the leaves.
  4. Spray products can be applied with a variety of equipment.
  5. Keep sprays coarse and use low pressure to reduce the chance of spray going on non-target sensitive plants.

“Remember the older the dandelion the harder it will be to kill. Scattered plants can be dug but be sure to cut the root off below the ground so the crown is killed to avoid the plant coming back as a new plant,” Johnson said.

Make a note on the calendar for fall to control the plants after the first frost so you do not need to be one of the people with a yellow lawn next spring.

“Remember even if the lawn looks good this year seedlings can be back next year,” he said.

To gain more lawn and garden tips, visit the Garden and Yard page.