5 Types of Purple Flower Weeds With Pictures to Identify
Weeds could be a real nuisance in any garden. These start to hamper the health and the growth of the other plants. But weeds are not all ugly and bad, which is why some gardeners choose to weed their garden deliberately. Here we list down some weeds that produce beautiful purple flowers. Of course, it is up to you whether you decide to keep them or pull them out.
Table of Contents
How Can Weeds Affect Plants?
Here is why you need to get rid of the weed without any delay.
- Weeds rob the nutrients from the soil. This is because weeds, like the other plants, are fighting to survive, and they are good. Thus, they deplete the soil’s nutrients, which does not give sufficient nutrients to your vegetation and fruits and causes them to die.
are invasive. If not removed, they spread quickly and take over the cultivated area. These do not just invade your garden but also choke the plants that you are growing. Weeds are hardy, which is not true about the plants that we cultivate.
- Weeds deplete water from the soil, which your plants need for healthy growth. The plants need water to produce flowers and vegetables. Still, weeds take away the water leaving your plants starving for moisture.
- Many weeds grow wide and tall and thus shade and crowd the plants. Some may also spread in the grass. This ends up blocking sunlight that your plant needs for growth, and it also blocks the free flow of air.
It may seem that the purple flower weed is all bad. However, some weeds are grown purposefully because of their medicinal properties. Many weeds are eaten, and they also help to retain the nutrients in the soil. Some are edible and offer nutrients for pollinators. Its shallow roots prevent soil erosion, and they also fertilize the soil by composting. Its roots aerate the soil. And lastly, they are pretty too. The only problem with weeds is that they grow at the wrong places, which makes it an emergency to get rid of weeds to maintain the health of your farm.
5 Types of Purple Flower Weeds
Yes, purple flowers are beautiful, but not when they grow in the wrong places. So here are the purple flowering weeds that are known to be notorious, responsible for invading your garden landscape.
#1. Creeping Charlie or Ground Ivy
Ground Ivy or Creeping Charlie belongs to the mint family and can be identified with its broadleaf. It grows to a height of one inch and quickly starts to spread around, scattering its leaves and stems all around. These are thus responsible for the purple blooms that you may see scattered all around. Its flowers have a blue and violet tinge like any spring flower, and its leaves are scalloped. They are elegant, but you should not get captivated by their beauty as they can quickly start to dominate your lawn. The vine is adaptive and resilient and will soon start to kill the grass turfs. Therefore, you want to get rid of this weed soon. The weed also does not get damaged by pests and insects. One good thing about this weed is that it attracts pollinators, but you need to calculate the risks over the benefits. The creeping Charlie thrives even in unfavorable conditions. It, however, needs fertile and moist soil and partial sunlight.
To prevent this weed from growing in your lawn, make sure to keep your lawns healthy by watering, mowing, and fertilizing them. When your grasses are well fed and healthy, there will be no room for these weeds. However, if the Garden ivy finds its way into your garden, use a professional level herbicide to get rid of it. Starving the weed of sunlight is another way to kill the weed. If the infection is small, then just bend down and pull the weeds out.
#2. Purple Deadnettle
The Purple deadnettle belongs to the mint family. It can be identified with its purple and pink flowers as well as by its leaves and stem. The stem is square-shaped with the lower section without any foliage. In contrast, the upper section bears leaves that are purple-colored and have triangular tips. The weed grows easily in fallow fields and drainage ditches as it needs unsavory habitats to grow. If your farm stays moist and is located close to a woodland area or field, then your lawn could be at risk. The weed grows only in the winter months, so stopping the seed production in the spring season means you can prevent it completely. Apply an herbicide before its blooming season. Tillage in the early spring and late fall will also prevent the purple deadnettle. You just need to tear it from the small sections and the edges of the lawn.
Known for its signature purple-colored flowers, Henbit is another weed that should be cleared off your lawn as soon as you spot them. The weed has a square-shaped stem with rounded leaves that have deep lobes. The leaves present on its upper stem do not contain any petioles but are attached to the main stem. Henbit also looks hairy. The weed can be spotted in the yard edges and next to the buildings or in your garden. The weed does not grow in the lawn center but only in the edges. It spreads through its seeds, so you need to prevent the formation of the seeds. Applying herbicide in the early spring helps but does not wait until the flowers appear; otherwise, the herbicides won’t work. Hand pulling is another way to get rid of the weed.
#4. Wild Violet
Wild violet is a weed that can be distinguished by its delicate stems and leaves in the shape of a heart. It is a perennial bloomer that produces beautiful purple-colored flowers. The weed grows in shady and moist conditions, but the mature ones are tolerant to drought. This means that the wild violet can grow in a favorable place in your lawn, like under a shaded tree but will soon spread to anywhere that it wishes to.
The weed can propagate from its seeds and can be transported anywhere by the wind and rainfall. It also spreads through rhizomes underneath the ground. The weed is highly resilient and adapts well, causing havoc in your lawn. Hand pulling or using herbicides are the best ways to get rid of this weed. Make sure to dispose of them off properly; else, they will regrow soon.
Forget-me-not is not a dangerous purple flower-bearing weed, but it can be a real nuisance if it goes out of control. These can then creep into your grass and kill them all. The weed is an annual and short-lived perennial plant that grows in the mid-summer season. It prefers well-drained but uniformly moist soil. It can grow in areas that receive partial or complete sunshine. The weed can be characterized by its bluish-purple flowers with round petals and a yellow center. They are pretty and admirable but grow vigorously.
When are the Purple Flowers not that Pretty?
Look around your yard to be sure if the purple flowers that you see blossoming are intentional or have grown without your knowledge. If you are not aware of them, then these could be the purple flowering weeds, and you want to get rid of them. The first step is to identify the weed and then eradicate them using the right methods.
However, some gardeners want to keep the weeds because of their nutritional value or just for their pretty bloom. As a gardener, you should weigh the risks and benefits of letting these weeds grow, as they could quickly spread through your entire garden and harm the other plants. Whether to keep it or remove it up to you and what you think is beneficial for your garden.
What’s that purple weed?
I’ve received a few questions asking what the purple weed is that is appearing in the landscape. It is probably either purple deadnettle (Lamium purpureum) or henbit (Lamium amplexicaule).
These weeds often get confused because they look similar. They both belong to the mint family, have square stems, have an ascending growth habit, opposite leaves, purple/pink flowers, and are winter annuals. When trying to identify if you have purple deadnettle or henbit, key ID traits to tell them apart are listed below.
Purple deadnettle that was found in Van Buren County this spring (2016).
Photo taken by Nancy Carr
Key ID traits for purple deadnettle:
- Purple-tinged leaves on upper stem triangular with pointed tips
- Upper leaves with petioles, not directly attached to stem
Henbit may look similar to purple deadnettle, but there are some key ID traits to look for to tell these weeds apart.
Key ID traits for henbit:
- Leaves rounded with deep lobes and venation on upper stem
- Upper leaves directly attached to stem with no petioles
- Densely pubescent (hairy) leaves
Since both are winter annual, preventing seed production is key to management. Tillage and herbicides are effective management options for these weeds. Both species are flowering now and management with herbicides will not likely result in full control. Fall or early spring herbicide applications will be most effective at managing problem infestations. Contact your local Iowa State University Extension & Outreach field agronomist for resources regarding control of these weeds.
Another weed that belongs to the mint family and is making lawns appear purple right now is ground ivy (Creeping Charlie, Glechoma hederacea). Unlike henbit and purple deadnettle that are winter annuals, ground ivy is a perennial weed, and also generally stays confined to lawns.