How To Get Rid Of Lambsquarters (Chenopodium Album): A Complete Guide

Lambsquarters is a weed that can be found in lawns and gardens across the United States, as well as all over the world. This annual weed is annoying to have growing in your yard because it spreads quickly and starts popping up everywhere.

In addition to being an eyesore, lambsquarters can compete with crops for nutrients in the soil which reduces yields of other plants.

This article will explain how to identify lambsquarters as well as how to get rid of it before it becomes a problem!

What Is Lambsquarters?

Lamb’s Quarters is the name given to multiple weeds in the Chenopodium family – Chenopodium album and Chenopodium berlandieri. The former is the more common weed in terms of global growth and is native to Europe, but the latter is native to North America and therefore likely more widespread in the US.

However, because these two types are closely related, look a lot alike, and can even hybridize with each other, we can essentially talk about them as if they are the same weed. They cause the same problems in lawns and gardens and can often be dealt with in the same ways.

It is also known as Melde, Goosefoot, or Fat Hen, and the berlandieri subspecies is also known as Pitseed Goosefoot.

It is eaten throughout the world in both cooked and raw forms, to feed both humans and livestock. In India, it is called bathua and a common ingredient in many dishes. It can also be used as an ingredient in wall plaster.

How and Where Does Lambsquarters Grow?

Lambsquarters is a fast-growing plant that first grows straight up and can reach heights of almost 10 feet tall. Once it then grows its flowers, however, it becomes weighted down by the leaves, flowers, and seeds, and starts to droop.

Lambsquarters is one of the most industrious and aggressive weeds, and the Chenopodium family as a whole is labelled one of the greatest weed threats to agriculture in the United States and throughout the globe. The Album subspecies is even herbicide resistant, making it incredibly difficult to permanently kill.

It populates waste spaces and thrives in soils that are rich in nitrogen. It reproduces by seed.

How Can You Identify Lambsquarters?

The first step in getting rid of the weeds is knowing what they look like so you don’t accidentally pull up other plants along with them.

Lambsquarters can grow to be as tall as ten feet. The weed has white to light-green flowers that appear like little buds along the stems. Flowers bloom between May and November.

At the top of the stems are arrow-shaped leaves, which are un-wettable, mealy and waxy, and appear to have been sprayed by a light white or grey sheen all over them like spray-paint. The leaves nearer the base of the stems, toward the ground, are toothed and shaped roughly like a diamond.

How Can You Get Rid of Lambsquarters From Your Yard?

Okay, so you can identify lambsquarters. What’s the next step?

As mentioned above, it is difficult to completely rid your yard of lambsquarters, but it is possible to significantly decrease its presence.

If you have a small area infested by lambsquarters, simply pulling out the weed can often be effective. Make sure you get as much of the root as possible so that it does not grow back. You can also use a hoe or small shovel to scrape the weed from the soil, then pull it out by its roots.

Chemical Methods

For more significant infestations, you may want to consider using a herbicide. Like stated earlier in the article, lambsquarters are herbicide resistant, but that does not mean they are totally immune.

It is more easily controlled with pre-emergent herbicides, which are herbicides that stop the lambsquarter seed from germinating in the first place. The Preen Extended Control Weed Preventer is an excellent pre-emergent weed killer.

Whenever you use a chemical herbicide you should always refer to the manufacturer’s instructions before use and wear proper safety protection such as gloves and long sleeve shirts.

Organic Methods

Some organic options to remove lambquarters, after you have tried hand pulling as much as you can of it up, are dark tilling, rotary hoeing, or even a controlled flaming when the weed is young and small.

How Can You Prevent Lambsquarters From Growing?

One way to prevent an initial infestation of lambsquarters is through routine mowing. Mowing will keep the lambsquarters from growing to the height it needs to produce seeds, and eventually without seeds it will not be able to reproduce.

Additionally, a crop rotation of small grains or thick turf grasses may be able to suppress a lambsquarters infestation.

In Conclusion

If you’ve found yourself with a yard full of Chenopodium album or Lambsquarters, don’t worry. You have options to get rid of the weed and prevent it from coming back next year. In this blog post we’ve given you all the information you need to identify where Lambsquarters is growing in your lawn, how to kill it chemically and organically, as well as what steps can be taken at home to keep it from returning.

In conclusion, controlling lamb’s quarters may seem like an impossible task at first but now that we’ve given some helpful tips on identification and prevention there should be no stopping you from getting rid of this pesky pest once and for all.