University of Maryland Extension

Deadnettle

(More Lawn Weeds)

Deadnettle
Lamium purpureum

deadnettle
Flowering deadnettle

Life cycle

Winter annual noticeable in early spring when the light purple flowers are in bloom. Dies out in late spring.

Growth habit

Square stems. Leaves opposite, triangular, pointed, and overlapping and crowded near top of stem. Leaves often with purple coloring. Pinkish-purple lipped flowers borne at top of plant. Fibrous root system doesn't creep along the ground.

Reproduction

Produces seed in the spring; seed germinates in the early fall or early spring

deadnettle closeup


Conditions that favor growth

Mowing the lawn too short.

Management in Lawns

  • Cultural practices
    Maintain healthy, dense turf that can compete and prevent weed establishment.

  • Mechanical Management
    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.

  • Chemical Treatment in Lawns 
    Herbicides should be used as a last resort because of the potential risks to people, animals, and the environment. Be aware of these precautions first. 
    If you chose this option, 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* or Triclopyr.

    *Do not spray herbicides containing dicamba over the root zone of trees and shrubs. Roots can absorb the product possibly causing plant damage. Refer to the product label for precautions. 

  • Organic Lawn Herbicides

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