Published On: Mon, Jul 8th, 2019

Useful Tips For Removing The Annoying And Painful Grass Burs From Our Lawns

By Aalia Ray

Grass burrs, also known as southern sandspur, or sticker burrs, start appearing on our lawns every year, especially during the summers, when the climate is warm and dry. These burrs grow in patches, and can flourish well in sandy soils with very little water. You can find them growing in abundance in the southern US states of New Mexico, Arizona, and Texas. 


Image by Claudia Peters from Pixabay

The spiny seeds tend to stick on our clothes, shoes, and also on our pets. They can cause discomfort and pain, if they penetrate our skin. It is also quite tricky to remove them from few types of fabrics, because of sharp spines around the seeds. Therefore, it is important for us to totally remove these spiny weeds from our lawns.

To get rid of grass burrs, the best way is keeping your lawn healthy by regular applications of necessary fertilizer and also regular mowing schedule.

  1. You must perform certain soil test on your lawn, field or those areas that are affected by infestation of grass bur during winter or late fall. If you wait until summer and spring to begin your control measures then it will be very late.

That is because by that time grass bur plant may have enough time to become fully established. 

You may contact any local county agricultural office to get soil testing instructions.

You may also TLC Landscapes if you live in North Texas. They are a professional lawn maintenance and landscaping company who can help you to get rid of this problem.

  1. You can also add various soil amendments in the lawn at the rate recommended as per the soil test.
  2. In early spring, spread grass seed all over bare patches in your lawn. This will allow the grass to compete along with plants of vigorous grass bur that may not grow so well under competition within amended soil. 
  3. Mow all the affected areas regularly during growing season so that the seeds of grass bur heads may not have chance to form. Usually different turf grasses may have different kind of mowing height requirements, hence cut at right height so your grass will form deep roots and also remains healthy.
  4. Try to spot treat those areas where grass burs are found to be growing by digging plants up with the roots by using a shovel or hoe. 

To protect hands, wear garden gloves, and try to dispose of the plants by either burning or placing it in household garbage disposal box.

  1. Water your lawn at equivalent of 1” of rain during every week. It will be better to water deeply and infrequently rather than applying little amount of water several intervals in the week.

You will need the following things:

  • Soil test
  • Lawn mower
  • Recommended soil amendments
  • Hoe
  • Shovel
  • Garden gloves

Little tip

Many herbicides may claim of preventing or eliminating grass bur plant, but only healthy lawn will be best preventive measure. 

Usually most herbicides will be short acting or impossible to apply in timely manner as these grass bur seeds will germinate all throughout the growing season. 

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