Pre-emergence Herbicides: Apply the first application of a pre-emergence herbicide during the spring and a repeat application during the early summer to prevent doveweed seed from sprouting. Indaziflam (Specticle G), like many pre-emergence herbicides, stops root formation of both weeds and desirable turfgrasses; therefore, follow the label directions for use. Do not apply Specticle G to a lawn seeded less than 16 months prior to application, nor to a lawn sodded less than 3 months before application. If Specticle G is applied to the lawn, wait at least 6 months before laying new sod in the same area. Note that lower rates of Specticle G are recommended on centipedegrass and St. Augustinegrass. See Table 1 below for more information.
Celsius WG provides good control of doveweed on the four warm-season turfgrasses. Do not use Celsius WG on tall fescue lawns. Additionally, Celsius WG is the only product that can be used on warm-season lawns during their spring green-up. If a second application is needed, wait 2 to 4 weeks after the first application.
Have the soil tested and follow soil test recommendations for rates of fertilizers and lime. These recommendations are specific for each turfgrass species. Please see HGIC 1652, Soil Testing, for sampling procedures.
Treat large areas with doveweed with little or no turfgrass with a 3% glyphosate spray. Products containing 41% glyphosate are available with instructions for diluting in a pump-up sprayer. Re-sod after the doveweed is eliminated.
Table 1. Examples of Herbicides for Doveweed Management in Residential Turfgrass.
Doveweed (Murdannia nudiflora) has become a troublesome weed in home lawns during the last few years. It is a summer annual weed, and its seeds germinate during the late spring when soil temperatures reach 65 to 70 °F. Doveweed leaves are thick, shiny, and up to 4-inches long with parallel veins. Because of its long, grass-like foliage, doveweed is often overlooked in St. Augustinegrass or centipedegrass lawns. Doveweed spreads aggressively within the lawn by thick aboveground, creeping stems, called stolons.
Cultural Controls: Limit doveweed growth by maintaining a healthy and dense turfgrass. Water the lawn deeply but infrequently to allow the surface soils to dry in between watering. This will improve turfgrass root depth and slow the spread of the doveweed. For more information on irrigation, please see HGIC 1207, Watering Lawns. Additionally, correct any drainage problems to reduce wet areas within the lawn. Core aerate the lawn to improve internal soil drainage, reduce soil compaction, and aid in root growth. For more information on core aeration, please see HGIC 1200, Aerating Lawns.
If this document didn’t answer your questions, please contact HGIC at [email protected] or 1-888-656-9988.
See Table 1 below for examples of brands and products, including more notes on the use of atrazine, 3-way herbicides, Celsius WG, and glyphosate.
According to the Texas A&M Department of Rangeland, Wildlife, and Fisheries Management, there are 20 species of croton occurring in Texas, but Texas Dove Hunters Magazine puts it at “more than 25 species of croton” in Texas. In short, there’s no short supply of croton in Texas (you may just need to look out your window for confirmation of that) but don’t confuse this croton with the far more colorful garden croton, native to tropical areas, that is grown as an indoor houseplant. An endless landscape of bold and shiny evergreen leaves in vivid shades of greens, yellows, and purples, may sound more enticing but it would not provide the wildlife benefits of our more, well, beautiful-on-the-inside croton in Texas.
Woolly croton One-seed croton Texas croton
“…mourning dove and white-wing dove diets are comprised of more than 99 percent seed by weight. Even though these dove species are known to consume seeds from over 1,000 plant species nation-wide, seeds from certain plant species or families are represented repeatedly in dove diets. In Texas, doveweed is king.”