Weed-opedia: Creeping Woodsorrel – Southern Exposure

Weed-opedia: Creeping Woodsorrel

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Creeping Woodsorrel

Creeping Woodsorrel (Oxalis Corniculata)

What does it look like?: Short, typically no taller than 4 inches.  It is a spreading perennial with 3 hairy heart-shaped leaves of reddish-purple and yellow flowers with 5 petals.

What causes it?: It often comes home with you in plant nursery containers–it loves warm, moist environments, but is incredibly adaptable.  It spreads through its easily dispersed seeds, as well as regenerating from an incompletely removed taproot when being hand-removed.

When does it show up?: Growth period is mid-spring to mid-fall. Flowers typically appear May through September.

Best treatment plan:  This weed is fast spreading and invasive.  Removal before bloom time is key.  It prevents seeds from setting and spreading.  The seed pods build up pressure and finally burst, which can send seeds travelling several feet.  If hand-pulling, be sure to get the whole taproot.  Do not till areas around creeping woodsorrel, as this will potentially bring any seeds up to the light.  Post-emergent and pre-emergent treatment will help reduce the seeds and thus the spreading.  Call a professional for a free quote.

How long will it take to get rid of it?: May take years due to its adaptability and easily spread seeds.