Dandelions: Friend or Foe? – Turfgrass Science at Purdue University

Dandelions: Friend or Foe?

The annual bloom of dandelions is already here in southern Indiana and just around the corner in the rest of the state. Though some find dandelions attractive and some may actually eat them in salads or wine, others consider dandelions as weeds and try to control them in a lawn. The optimum time to control dandelions and other broadleaf weeds is in the fall and the second most effective time is in late spring, at or shortly after the flush of flowers. According to our research, herbicide applications before mid-April will only “burn” the leaves and weeds will grow back by summer. Herbicides containing 2,4-D, MCPP and dicamba are most effective for control of dandelions and other broadleaf weeds. If you only have a few dandelions in your lawn, consider spot-applying a herbicide with a spray bottle rather than treating the whole lawn. We do not need to use any more herbicides than what is absolutely necessary on our lawns. Be extremely careful when applying any herbicides near ornamentals because they can be easily damaged by these herbicides. For more information, refer to¬†AY-9, “Broadleaf Weed Control”.

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