What is Dandelion and How Do I Control It?

Dandelions are one of the most infamous of weeds. This broadleaf perennial can grow in any soil.

Dandelion by Alexander van Loon is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 US

Dandelions are one of the most infamous of weeds. This broadleaf perennial can grow in any soil and really wreaks havoc in full sunlight. In the early spring, new sprouts will emerge from the taproot, which can be two to three feet deep in the soil. (Yikes.) You're already all too familiar with their yellow "flowers" that turn into white puffballs. These puffballs contain seeds that spread with the wind to other lawns. Even though they're dormant in the winter, the taproot survives deep in the soil to start the cycle again in the spring. To keep dandelions out of your yard, the root has to be killed. Brutal, huh?

Outsmarting Dandelions: Get Rid of Them in Three Steps

Even the most meticulous lawns will have an occasional dandelion. They are difficult to completely eliminate and the entire plant (root and all) needs to be removed or they can grow right back. The best way to attack dandelions is to kill them and then keep new ones from establishing themselves in your lawn.

Resist the urge to pull

As always, don't hand pull them. They will grow right back unless the taproot (often 2-3 feet deep) is completely removed.


Love on your lawn

A thick lawn is the best method for preventing dandelions and other broadleaf weeds. Cut grass at a high setting on your mower. And establish a regular feeding program so your lawn is thick enough to keep dandelions from establishing in the first place.

Spray day

Apply Roundup® For Lawns when dandelions are young and actively growing for the most lethal results.