University of Maryland Extension

Dock

(more lawn weeds)

Dock
Rumex crispus

closeup of flowering dock
Flowering dock

young dock plants
Immature dock

Life cycle 

Perennial emerges from large yellowish taproot; also grows from seed.

Growth habit 

Basal rosettes of 6-12 in. long leaves.

Reproduction

Flowering stalks (right) grow up to 3 ft. tall and green, turning rusty brown, persisting through winter; seeds remain viable in soil up to 80 years; can produce from 100 - 60,000 seeds per plant.

Conditions that favor growth

Nutrient rich, heavy damp soils; adapts to dry, poor soils.

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-D, MCPP (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

    

                                                                                                 

Maintained by the IET Department of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. © 2019. Web Accessibility