Spot 7 Different Types of Weeds in Mississippi

Mississippi is exasperated by some exotic weed species altering how natural landscapes function. Besides, they cost all gardeners big bucks while getting rid of the weeds.

Weeds are a significant cause of agitation among lawn owners, as they can crop up out of nowhere and expand like wildfire.

They are garden nuisances that choke out their surrounding desirable plants by robbing space, nutrients, water, and light. So it would help if you dealt with these invaders immediately.

However, to deal with the weeds effectively, you first need to identify them.

Then, you can apply the best approach if you know the weed type or weed popping up in your yard. So this article compiles a list of different weeds in Mississippi to help you spot and eradicate them.

7 Different Weeds in Mississippi

1. Jio

Jio
FamilyCommelinaceae
Common NamesCommelina, Bengal dayflower, Dew flower, Hairy commelina, Indian dayflower, Hairy wandering jew, and wandering jew.

In 2006, this perennial weed popped up in Mississippi and is today a severe nemesis of gardeners in Mississippi.

Jio, also known as Bengal dayflower, seizes fertile land propagated into vegetables, cotton, soybeans, corn, and peanuts.

Amazingly, flowers bloom above- and belowground. However, this weed grows abundantly on all soil types and pH.

Jio thrives in different habitats and proliferates, forming dense mats at the nodes at optimal conditions. This weed germinates best in high-fertility and moist soils.

Their stems are rich in moisture; once rooted, Jio can survive many years, even without humidity.

Jio can reproduce by seeds and vegetative parts. This annual herb often bears subterranean runners that root at nodes and give rise to self-pollinating flowers. These runners and stem fragments help in spreading the weed.

Jio exhibits ovate, apple-green, shiny leaves with a narrow base. It has red or often colorless, long, and multiple-celled bristles (setae) at the mouth.

Their small, deep ink-blue flowers will appeal to your eyes. Bracts attach them, and the edges are merged to create a flattened funnel-shaped spathe.

Each fruit contains five seeds in a pear-shaped capsule that opens once matured.

Nevertheless, the key identifying features are the blue flowers with a short stalk and the reddish brown hairs on the top of the leaf sheath.

If this weed has expanded substantially in your yard, it will be hard to control with a herbicide.

However, post-emergence herbicide treatment will work against younger jio weeds. Well, you can control or stop the growth of this annual weed by pre-emergence herbicide application.

Also Read: Weeds in Houston: Identify 7 Common Weeds with Pictures

2. Goosegrass

Goosegrass
FamilyPoaceae
Common NamesYard-grass, the Indian goosegrass, Wiregrass, Crowfootgrass

Goosegrass is usually seen in the landscape beds and lawns in the summer, especially with compacted and poorly drained soil.

This weed also takes advantage of the yards mowed very short.

This annual grassy weed grows in bunch or clumps, flaunting dark green leaves sprouting from a silver center.

However, while goosegrass resembles crabgrass, they are monikered ‘silver crabgrass.’ Besides being an eyesore, this plant also causes several diseases.

These bunch-type, coarse grasses feature flattened stems growing close to the ground. Their leaves are dark green, about 1/3 inches wide and 12-inch long. Plus, they are smooth beneath and hairy close to the base.

Goosegrass blades are slightly folded or flat. Flowers pop out during mid-summer with spikes radiating out from the flowering stem. However, branches can grow nearly 2.5 feet tall, and their lower portion near the rosette is white or silver.

Interestingly, like crabgrass, goosegrass stems don’t root at the nodes.

Mow at the best height so the grass grows thick with a deep root system. Your mower blades should be sharp enough to cut off the inflorescences before the weed seeds.

The best defense against grass is by using a post-emergent herbicide. You may have to mold the post-emergent herbicide based on the turf grass type you are cultivating. Plus, you can apply it repeatedly to control goosegrass before they seed.

Mechanical control will also be effective at eradicating goosegrass. Thanks to its centralized root system, you can manually eliminate it quickly.

You can drag out small, young plants by hand or use a gardening tool like a sharp, slender trowel to remove the central taproot.

Avoid extreme culture and over-watering your yard, as they can encourage this weed’s growth. Another simple way to stop goosegrass from sprouting is by aeration. It boosts the ground’s porosity and disheartens this weed’s formation.

3. Dallisgrass

Dallisgrass
FamilyPoaceae
Common NamesHairy flowered paspalum, Large watershed paspalum, Large watergrass, Watergrass, Paspalum grass, Sticky heads, Herbe de Dallis.

Here is another weed that loves warm and moist spaces to propagate – Dallisgrass. Like crabgrass, this perennial grassy weed grows in clumps.

Their tall seed stalks, coarse seeds, and bunch-like appearance make them stick out in a garden. They have a unique gray-green color.

Unfortunately, getting rid of dallisgrass is complicated as they are deep-rooted. They increase and produce seeds profusely, allowing them to intrude on cultivated lands quickly. And their dense growth tends to choke out and prevent other native plants from growing.

Deep and thick fibrous roots characterize Dallisgrass, and they spread through a short rhizome.

This weed has blade-shaped leaves, about 10 inches long, and hollow leaf stalks that create a spreading, coarse tuft.

The leaves have hairy lower sheaths, but no hair is on the leaf blades. The stems bloom 3 to 7 groups of flowers at almost right angles. However, the flowers are fleshy, small, three-lobed, and inversely coned-shaped.

The first method to control this warm-loving grassy weed is by maintaining a healthy and dense lawn. Properly water, fertilize, and mow your yard.

Fill the bare spots with sod or seed to stop dallisgrass from seeding. In short, leave no room for this weed to sprout.

The following effective way to kill dallisgrass is pre-emergent treatment.

This grassy weed has long spikes that bear 2 to 10 spikelets, each carrying two rows of seeds. And with wind, lawn mowers, and animals, the seeds spread all over a lawn and even to another place.

So a pre-emergent herbicide will kill this weed successfully if watered into the soil. You can try to drag out the distressing plants by hand.

But it’s labor intensive. So go for post-emergent herbicides to deal with dallisgrass. You must apply them several times at three to four-week intervals to control their growth entirely.

You May Also Read: 12 Common Weeds in Ohio | Identification Guide With Pictures

4. Kyllinga

Kyllinga
FamilyCyperaceae
Common NamesGreen kyllinga, Short-leaved kyllinga, Shortleaf spike sedge, Perennial greenhead sedge.

This perennial sedge forms in dense mats that can crowd out turfgrasses and even bermudagrass.

Kyllinga thrives in warm temperatures, and low, poorly drained, or wet lawns. While this weed can sustain low mowing heights, it becomes difficult to control in turf grass. 

Besides the seed, Kyllinga can reproduce from creeping, horizontal and underground stems or rhizomes that give rise to new shoots.

Kyllinga has one to three narrow, glossy, hairless, and dark green leaves ranging from 2 to 6 inches. They have triangular flowering stalks that bear a dense, rounded flower head with green flowers at the ends. 

However, the seeds are oval and flat, reaching 3mm in length. They usually sprout between spring and summer. Well, naive gardeners often confuse kyllinga with yellow or purple nutsedge. But here lies the difference –

Green Kyllinga has glossy, green ridged leaves and no auricles and ligules. 

This weed produces nutsedge-like seedheads once it matures. The stalk below the flower head has an assembly of three long bracts (leaflike structures).

Lastly, each flower head will have many white spikelets that can produce seeds. Wherever the seeds establish, they will form dense mats.

A healthy lawn will always keep weeds away from invading. You can ensure it by proper fertilization and regular mowing. 

The fact is that a well-maintained lawn will promote vigorous and dense turfgrass that can compete with the weed efficiently. 

Your lawn shouldn’t be over-watered or poorly drained, as they are ideal habitats for kyllinga. However, if this weed is already infesting your lawn, herbicide treatment is a must. 

You may need to apply the herbicide several times to achieve successful kyllingra control.

5. Foxtail

Foxtail
FamilyPoaceae
Common NamesGreen bristlegrass, Pigongrass, Wild millet.

Also known as wild millet, foxtail germinates in dry and moist soil. However, this annual grassy weed can sustain in various propagating conditions. 

Interestingly, while this yearly grassy weed displays a soft, foxtail-like top, it is named ‘foxtail.’ 

With such a symbolic top, foxtails are easy to spot, making them a powerful foe for Houston gardeners. However, they are of three types – green, yellow, and giant. 

Among the three types, the yellow variety is the most minor and prevalent weed in lawns.

As the name suggests, this grassy weed consists of a ‘fluffy’ top that resembles a fox’s tail. Foxtail sprouts in an upright, coarse bunch. 

They have long stems and broad leaves. Furthermore, the leaves are smooth and flat with slightly rough edges and have fine hairs at the base.

Flower stems grow from the leaves base. And branches are characterized by a 3 to 10 inches spike. However, foxtail produces seed heads all over the summer.

Like any grassy weeds, you can best control foxtail by pre-emergent applications. Pre-emergents create a barrier that prevents the growth of this weed. 

However, you can also battle the breakthrough of this weed with post-emergent treatments. 

First, with pre-emergents, control as many foxtails as possible and then address the breakthrough selectively using a post-emergent.

But note that you must apply a pre-emergent before germination for adequate control.

6. Poa Annual

Annual Bluegrass (Poa Annua)
FamilyPoaceae
Common NamesAnnual blue grass, Annual meadow grass, Annual Poa, Wintergrass, and Speargrass

Although Poa annua pops up during spring, they grow for an extended period, making it hard to eradicate. The weed persists no matter how you treat or deal with it. Poa annua is well-adapted to all local conditions. 

While they are cool season weeds, poa annua can thin out, wither, and die in drought conditions. And after dying off in summer, the weed creates hideous brown patches.

Poa annua has smooth, bright green leaves that look brighter than your lawn and has a pointed, ‘boat-shaped’ tip. Moreover, this weed grows in a bunch-type pattern. 

Poa annua never grows in individual blades but in clumps. Besides, they give rise to a white feathery, unappealing seed head mostly in the spring. However, you may sometime even spot seed heads in summer and winter.

A Poa annua killer may not conquer the battle as they produce several hundreds of seeds in a season. 

So the best bet is to apply a pre-emergent as it will kill the weed in the first place. It works by forming a bar beneath the soil surface, decreasing the number of seeds that sprout and advance. 

However, be sure to apply the pre-emergent to the entire yard for adequate control. Remember to use these products before germination; otherwise, they will lose the battle. 

On the other hand, post-emergent treatments will be effective if the unsightly Poa annua has erupted horribly in your garden.

Also Check: Weeds in NC | Spot 6 Common Weeds With Pictures

7. Bahiagrass

Bahiagrass
FamilyPoaceae
Common NamesCommon baha, Pensacola bahai and Lawn paspalum.

This warm, perennial grass-type weed is a nemesis of lawn owners due to its aggressive nature. And once it creeps into a lawn unwittingly, it falls hard on gardeners. 

Bahiagrass can thrive in different soil types and expand through rhizomes and seeds. 

Amazingly, the weed can tolerate drought; thus, their appearance on your lawn indicates dry soil conditions.

The key identifying feature is their ‘Y-shaped’ seed heads. They consist of two spikes merged at the flower stalk’s top, forming a unique ‘Y-shape.’ And small dark-brown to black flowers line these spikes. 

Bahiagrass boasts light-green, coarse leaves that can sometimes be folded and sharply pointed. An extensive deep root system backs them with red to robust pink rhizomes.

Firstly, you aim to maintain a healthy and dense lawn – properly fertilize, irrigate, and mow at the best height. 

However, if it has already popped out in your area, you can dig the weed up or use an herbicide. For optimum results, make sure to timely treat with herbicide treatment. 

You may need to apply post-emergent herbicide for better control, as bahiagrass can also reproduce by underground stems (rhizomes).

The Takeaway

Apart from the seven weeds mentioned above, many other undesirable weeds are also important causes of headaches among Houston gardeners.

However, regardless of the type of weeds you are dealing with, it’s recommended to take advantage of overseeding and lawn aeration to encourage healthy and thick lawns.

While weeds usually sustain best in narrow yards, nothing uproots weed growth like thick grass. And this rule applies to all the weeds you tackle year round.

About Jennifer Igra

Growing up in Brooklyn, New York City known for it’s green gardens. Jennifer, a 30 year old gardener and green living fanatic started Igra World to share her gardening journey and increase gardening awareness among masses. Follow Igra World to improve your gardening skills.

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