University of Maryland Extension

Hairy bittercress

(More lawn weeds)  (Control Options)  (General Weed Gallery)

Hairy bittercress
Cardamine hirsuta

hairy bittercress

Lifecycle  

Primarily a winter annual. 

Growth habit

Basal rosette of pinnate leaves; 1-3 pairs of leaflets with
terminal, larger leaflet; tiny, 4-petaled white flowers in clusters at top of stems,
followed by slender, upright seed capsules.

Reproduction 

Seed; when mature capsules pop explosively.

Conditions that favor growth

Shade and mowing lawn too short.

Management

Cultural control: Maintain healthy, dense turf that can compete and prevent weed establishment.
Mechanical control: Hand pulling or using an appropriate weeding tool are the primary means of mechanical weed control in lawns. This is a viable option at the beginning of an infestation and on young weeds. Hand pulling when the soil is moist makes the task easier. Weeds with tap roots like dandelions or have a basal rosette (leaves clustered close to the ground) like plantain are easier to pull than weeds such as Bermudagrass (wiregrass) or creeping Charlie (ground ivy) that spread with stolons or creeping stems that root along the ground.
General chemical control: (lawns) Preemergent applied in late summer/early fall, however, you will not be able to sow grass seed. Or spot treat weeds with a liquid, selective, postemergent, broadleaf weed killer applied when weeds are actively growing. Look for a product with one or more of the following active ingredients:
2, 4-DMCPP (mecoprop), Dicamba (be careful when using around tree and shrub roots) or Triclopyr. 

Organic control

For a glossary of herbicide terms and additional information see: control options 

 

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