Garden Spurge

Chamaesyce hirta

Garden Spurge is a warm-season annual broadleaf weed that is also commonly called Pillpod Sandmat or its scientific name, Chamaesyce hirta.

Identify

Serrate

Serrate

Lanceolate

Lanceolate

Garden Spurge has vertically growing to sprawling stems. The stems are very hairy, branched and reddish-purple in color. Its leaves have unequal bases and are also hairy. When in bloom, Garden Spurge features hairy flowers occurring in tiny clusters at the stem tip and from bases of leaves. This broadleaf weed reproduces by seeds.

Life Cycle

This broadleaf weed thrives in dry and moist soils and can be found in grasslands, pastures, waste areas, cultivated areas, lawns and gardens. Although most often found in the southern part of the United States, Garden Spurge can also be found in Maryland, Michigan and New York.

Life Cycle Image

Control

Cultural broadleaf weed control methods are largely ineffective against Chamaesyce hirta. Good mowing habits fail to discourage this invader because it can grow horizontally, beneath the mowing height. Additionally, seed pods can contain as many as 3,000 seeds per plant that “explode” when they are mature, scattering them considerable distances across your lawn.

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