This summer, you may have noticed what looks like a large dandelion plant covered in blisters growing in your lawn or landscape. It's known as bristly oxtongue, and if you examine or touch it you'll see and feel why. The stems and flower bracts are bristly, and the leaves are covered with blisterlike swellings that are prickly to the touch.
Bristly oxtongue can be an annual weed or a biennial weed. It thrives during the winter and warm weather and can grow to be over 3 feet tall. This weed spreads by seed, which can be dispersed long distances by the wind.
According to the book, Pests of the Garden and Small Farm, you can control bristly...
Weeds can be a real nuisance in gardens and landscapes, and even during the colder winter months, some kinds of weeds continue to grow and thrive. These are called winter annual weeds.
Most weeds are classified as annuals, biennials, or perennials. Annuals complete their life cycle (germinate from seed, grow, flower, set seed, and die) in one year or less, biennials generally complete their life cycle in 2 years, and perennials live longer than 2 years.
Examples of winter annual weeds include chickweed, little mallow, and annual bluegrass. They germinate and actively grow during fall and winter, then produce seed and die by the hot summer months.
If allowed to set seed, annual winter weeds can continue to grow...
Catchweed bedstraw. It's that weed that tugs at your clothes while you pass by or attaches to your dog or cat's fur. It's also known as the “Velcro plant” since it easily clings to anything that touches it.
In the garden, catchweed bedstraw competes with landscape plants for nutrients, water and light. Once mature, it can reach 6 feet long and be problematic when it smothers desirable plants. It can also make it difficult for gardeners to harvest produce.
Catchweed bedstraw is a winter or summer annual in California. The best control is to physically remove it as soon as it appears so it does not spread. For tips on how to manage this weed in your landscape, please visit the