Did Your Lawn Care Company Tell You That Broadleaf Plantain Will Destroy Your Grass?

Broadleaf Plantain, also know by the scientific name Plantago majo, is a short, leafy plant that loves to grow in thin and weakened sections of your lawn.

There is one problem with this pest, It forms large spreading colonies, suffocating the grass around it.

I’ve seen lawns absolutely covered with this stuff.

Here is some basic information about this weed:

It grows everywhere in the United States, southern Canada, most of Europe, and northern and central Asia. Grows well in full sun or partial shade. Its rosette of leaves is 5-10 inches across, with each leaf being 2-8 inches long, and 1-4 inches wide. The leaves hug the ground, and crowd out healthy grass. The main advantage that this plant has is that it grows better than others where the soil is compacted. So if your lawn has a small gap it can easly grow there even if the soil is firm, choking out the grass around it.

Early summer through September you will see the seed stalks rising. It spreads from seeds and also re-sprouts roots below the ground. If Broadleaf Plantain is appearing, it can be an indication that you are mowing your grass too low.

If you want to try removing this plant yourself, the only way is to dig them out. You will need to do this repeatedly over several months in order to effectively control the plants. Removing the plants before they produce seed also helps to speed up the process.

If you try pulling the plants out by grasping the leaves, they tend to break off, allowing the roots to continue spreading beneath the ground, forming new plants. Mowing does not work because of how low the leaves lie. Additionally, seeds and plant parts can contaminate your lawn mower and other equipment, so mowing will just spread the plants to new areas.

Herbacides can be effective to control plantain seedlings, and can also reduce the vigor of established plantain plants. Please ask your lawn care company for help in applying the correct herbacides for this weed.