Speedwell fading fast

Editor’s note: This article is from the archives of the MSU Crop Advisory Team Alerts. Check the label of any pesticide referenced to ensure your use is included.    

As we roll into the summer kickoff weekend, I’ve noticed that one weed has been particularly voracious throughout the landscape – speedwell. To some, it is very important to distinguish between the different types of speedwells. There is corn speedwell, creeping speedwell and germander speedwell to name a few, but no matter the speedwell, at this time of the year I wouldn’t spend too much time pulling the trigger finger on the squirt bottle of herbicide.

The most prevalent speedwell species in Michigan is corn speedwell, which is a winter annual. Winter annuals complete their lifecycle in the spring after flowering and producing seed. Apply an herbicide now, and the speedwell will be dead and gone in two to three weeks. However, if you do nothing it could take as long as 14 to 21 days (Get the picture – do nothing and it’s gone!). Because the speedwell has completed its lifecycle, there are plenty of new seeds in the soil for future generations. The optimal time to treat speedwell so that you don’t have another outbreak next spring is in the fall, so mark your calendar now. Remember that if you’re looking for help on identifying speedwell go to www.msuturfweeds.net.

The specific link for creeping speedwell is: www.msuturfweeds.net/details/_/creeping_speedwell_2/

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