Tall purple seed head weed

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.

#3. Henbit

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.

#5. Forget-me-not

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.

Weeds With Purple Flowers: Are These Weeds in Your Grass, Yard, or Garden?

Did you find some purple flowers in your yard or grass, and you aren’t able to identify if they are a weed or not? In this article, you’ll learn about the eleven most common weeds that carry purple flowers, to help you decide if these weeds need to be eradicated, or if they are safe to keep around your home.

By Jason White Last updated: April 1, 2022 | 12 min read

Without a doubt, it can be difficult to keep up with weeding your garden. Many gardeners toil for hours trying to keep their yards weed-free. This is to varying degrees of frustration; it can be stressful for some and therapeutic for others. Regardless of which category you may fall in, you will, at some point, come across weeds with purple flowers that are actually quite pretty.

It can be tempting to keep these weeds in your garden because of how attractive their flowers can be. Some of them can have medicinal and culinary uses, so they may be worth keeping around. More often than not though, you will want to get rid of these, lest they start taking over your garden!

In this article, you’ll learn about eleven of the most common weeds with purple flowers. This way, you’ll be able to decide for yourself whether they are worth keeping or if they need to be eradicated. After all, it can be difficult to identify whether the plants you’re looking at are weeds or beneficial plants. By the end of the article, you will have learned about how these weeds present themselves, as well as any uses they may have. Let’s get ready to take a closer look!

Wild Violets

Plant Species: Viola Odorata

Wild violets are gorgeous flowers for sure, and can be a pleasing sight as they make their way across your lawn. However, there comes a point when you realize that they should not be creeping so fast and that maybe they should be stopped. These weeds can take over your whole yard if not controlled.

The type of wild violet you have on hand may be different depending on its species. Regardless, they use underground stems called rhizomes to propagate themselves all throughout your garden. Rhizomes are thick and can quickly spread the plant everywhere you don’t need it to go. They can thus be hard to deal with.

The wild violet, with its pretty heart-shaped petals, can also appear in a variety of different colors– not just purple! They also come in white, yellow, and blue. Wild violets also have some culinary and medicinal use. The flowers are often candied to be used on cakes and cookies. They are also used in garnishes for salads or teas. The leaves are also used as a nutritious addition to salads. The flowers themselves can be dried to make tea. As for medicinal purposes, you can use wild violets in a salve for dry, chafed skin; eczema; or insect bites. It also serves as a good anti-inflammatory agent, due to its cooling properties.

Creeping Charlie/Ground Ivy

Plant Species: Glechoma hederacea

A distant relative in the mint family, creeping charlie is able to survive in many different kinds of weather and terrain. This weed can prove to be difficult to kill, as they can easily survive the blades of a lawnmower. The way this weed grows is by spreading like a blanket all over your lawn. They compete for nutrients, and thus can damage your existing plants.

You can identify creeping charlie by the purple, small, lobe-shaped petals forming a head of four lobes; they bloom in the late spring to early summer. It may be a good idea to try to try to remove creeping charlie during the summer months, when it lays dormant. These also propagate via rhizomes, which can make them difficult to kill. They must be controlled as soon as possible, because they are resilient against pests and diseases.

You will be able to find plenty of use for the creeping charlie in the culinary aspect. The leaves themselves cook up like spinach and have a somewhat sage-like, minty quality about them. Leaves and flowers do well for salads. The herby quality of the leaves allows it to be a good choice for teas, to be enjoyed with honey. If you brew your own beer, you can also use this plant for clarifying ale, as this was a common use for it in the past. The plant can also be used as an astringent and diuretic, and may have some properties that allow it to heal wounds.

Forget-Me-Nots

Plant Species: Myosotis sylvatica

Forget-me-nots are characteristically known for their blue flowers with yellow centers, but they can produce purple ones, too. They are often seen as a favored plant to keep growing as a border planting, but did you know that they are actually weeds? Beautiful and easy to care for, many gardeners enjoy keeping this weed and using it intentionally in their garden.

However, if not carefully looked after, this plant can quickly get out of control, spreading onto your lawn and taking nourishment from other plants that need it. They grow vigorously in the midwest states, so if you live in the area, you may have encountered this weed in your garden already!

Forget-me-nots are edible and can be used in a variety of culinary applications. They can be candied to add to cakes and cookies. They can also be used in salads and teas to add a little sweetness. You can opt to dry them if using in teas or tinctures. They do not have much in the way of medicinal benefits. Beyond this, forget-me-nots can be downright irresistible with their dainty flowers, so you may want to keep it for its beauty alone. It’s possible to keep this plant among others without them competing for nutrition; the key is to deadhead the flowers as much as possible to prevent their seeds from taking root.

Black Nightshade

Plant Species: Solanum nigrum

Black nightshade is a summer annual that dies when the air gets frosty, around autumn. This weed can grow to be tall and leafy, which means that they compete with other plants to get sunlight. Beyond this, they are identifiable by their purple or white flowers, as well as their purple or red berries that grow in bunches.

You can also identify this plant by the stem, which has a purplish hue to it, especially when conditions get colder. These weeds can grow in gardens that have rich soil, either in the sun or shade. They can be bushy, or grow as a climbing plant. A good way to control this weed is by pulling them by hand. You can prevent the spread of black nightshade by mulching your garden.

While black nightshade can easily be confused for deadly nightshade, it isn’t as poisonous as its deadly cousins. This doesn’t necessarily mean that they are good for you either; black nightshade still carries toxicity. Every part of the plant can prove to be toxic, so it’s best not to ingest this weed. It’s still worth mentioning that people have used the plant medicinally, albeit to varying degrees of success. Despite this, we advise not to use any parts of this weed just in case something goes awry.

Canada Thistle/Creeping Thistle

Plant Species: Cirsium arvense

The first of the thistles we will be featuring in this article is the Canada thistle, or the creeping thistle. Canada thistle is notorious for being difficult to get rid of. It is a perennial weed that has spear shaped leaves with sharp spines on them. This flowering weed has purple blooms that come in a pom pom shape that grows in clusters at the top of the plant.

When these weeds go to seed, the flowers turn fluffy and white, much like dandelions. Canada thistles grow best in low fertility soil, so you have a better chance of eradicating them by increasing your soil’s fertility. This also has the added benefit of helping desired plants grow! As for getting rid of them, you will have to pull them and mow the area frequently. They are difficult to remove due to the extensive root system that keeps Canada thistles alive.

Despite having barbs, the Canada thistle is actually edible. The leaves can be rolled to break off the spines if you prefer to eat them fresh. If you like to cook your greens, boiling the leaves will get rid of the spines. You can choose to eat the young shoots raw after peeling. Medicinally, Indigenous Americans have used the Canada thistle in tonics to soothe vomiting and stomach cramps.

Musk Thistle/Nodding Thistle

Plant Species: Carduus nutans

Another thistle on this list is the musk thistle, or nodding thistle. They can be identified by their leaves, which can grow up to 15 inches long. There are barbs on the wavy edges of the leaves. The stems have spiny wings. The flowers of the musk thistle are purple or pinkish. The heads of the flowers tend to nod down, which is what gives the plant their name.

The flower heads are 2 to 3 inches across in size. Musk thistles grow to be quite large, sometimes reaching heights of 6 feet! You can usually find musk thistles growing along the wayside, though they thrive in many parts of the US where the soil fertility is good. These weeds can grow aggressively if allowed to take root in your garden, and can be difficult to get rid of.

Like Canada thistles, musk thistles can be eaten, as long as you can get rid of the spines. It’s worth mentioning that the stalks are edible only when young, as they become woody with age. Beyond this, bees and goldfinches love musk thistles. It may be a good idea to keep them around if having these pollinators present is important to you. The trouble is keeping the thistles controlled, given the vast root system they possess. It may be best to simply rid yourself of these weeds than attempting to cultivate them.

Common Thistle/Spear Thistle/Bull Thistle

Plant Species: Cirsium vulgare

The last thistle on this list is the common thistle, otherwise known as the spear thistle or bull thistle. Common thistles can be identified by their pink or purple fluffy flowers sitting on top of what looks like a spiny ball. Leaves are often long and covered in barbs, as are the stems. The flowers appear from June up until October.

It’s important to mow this weed down as much as possible to prevent the flowers from popping up. Otherwise, you can try digging the individual plants out to control the problem. Control is crucial, because flowers can spread seeds when allowed to blow in the wind. It’s interesting to note that this weed is another attractive plant to goldfinches and certain kinds of butterflies. Still, since they can easily take over your garden, we recommend getting rid of them as soon as possible.

Common thistles are edible, although not necessarily a great source of food. The flower buds can be prepared and eaten as you would an artichoke heart, albeit you’d only be getting something around an inch in diameter to eat! The leaves and stems can also be used in salads as long as you have removed the spines first. Remember to use gloves and eye protection when removing the spines of any part of the thistle. More notably, the common thistle is used as a medicinal tea that helps relieve stomach cramps and nausea. The steam from the tea is also used to treat muscle soreness.

Purple Dead Nettle

Plant Species: Lamium purpureum

Purple dead nettle is an annual that grows vigorously, producing purple, pink, or white flowers from the mid-spring up until summertime. The flowers grow in a grouping that is tubular-shaped, composed of four petals that have come together. The leaves grow downward, are triangular, and may often have purple tips. The stem is square-shaped.

This weed is exceptionally hardy and can resist disease, pests, and harsh terrain and climate. They grow best in moist conditions like drainage ditches or at the edge of woodlands. If your garden is particularly moist, or if you live near an area where there is a purple dead nettle infestation, then your yard may be infested, too. Purple dead nettles can certainly be beautiful to look at, but will take over your yard in no time flat if given the chance to.

Purple dead nettle is often kept around by gardeners because of its ability to attract bees and other pollinators. While this is certainly an important reason to keep this weed around, it’s not the only one either! Purple dead nettle is edible and has a number of uses in the kitchen. This plant can be used in smoothies and salads, as well as soups. It can be used as a medicinal tea similar to stinging nettle; it has anti-inflammatory and diuretic effects.

Henbit

Plant Species: Lamium amplexicaule

Henbit is another weed with purple flowers, sometimes mistaken for purple dead nettle. There are a few differences that make identification a bit easier. They droop more than the purple dead nettle, and do not grow as high. Their leaves also have a characteristically “hairy” appearance. The flowers can bloom purple, pink, or white. You find that this weed loves the sun, and also thrives in moist conditions, like near ponds.

These weeds do not typically take over your garden; they aren’t as common as other weeds on this list. Its name comes from the seeds that fall from the plant, which are adored by hens– and turtles too, interestingly! If you aren’t using the seeds, it’s a good idea to get rid of this weed as soon as possible.

Henbit is also edible and used in a number of different recipes. You can use the leaves as you would use spinach, making them a good choice for salads. The flowers can also be used in salads and teas; for the latter, it’s better to dry them first. Henbit also has some applications medicinally. The tea from this plant can be used as a laxative, a means to reduce fever, and also helps to relieve rheumatoid arthritis.

Dove’s-Foot Crane’s-Bill

Plant Species: Geranium molle

The dove’s-foot crane’s-bill can be identified by their purple flowers with jagged petals. This weed is actually quite nice looking, and may even be considered a nice purple ornamental flower by some gardeners. The leaves are rounded in shape, and are a bit hairy, consisting of around 5 to 7 leaf points. This weed may not prove to be a large problem to your lawn, because it prefers arid conditions and dry soil. Still, it is possible for this weed to spread regardless, so being vigilant is important.

If there are only a few of these plants in your garden, you may have success pulling them up. A good way to prevent this weed from popping up is by ensuring that your lawn is well cared for, moist, and full of nutrients. You should implement a lawn care program that will accomplish this.

There isn’t much use for this weed in terms of culinary application, but it has been historically used medicinally for a number of ailments. It has been used to treat gout, colic, as well as joint and muscle pain. It has also been used to relieve bruises as well as stop bleeding. Regardless of whether you use this plant medicinally or not, it’s still a good idea to clear your lawn of them so that they don’t compete with your other plants for nutrients.

Selfheal/ Healall

Plant Species: Prunella vulgaris

The final weed on this list is known as selfheal, a member of the mint family. You can find these plants growing in dense patches in grasslands, meadows, and wood clearings, as well as on lawns. Their leaves have an oval shape to them; the edges are slightly scalloped. When immature, the stems are hairy, later growing to be smooth as the plant ages.

This weed has purple flowers with two leaves beneath them. This plant does not grow very tall and as such can survive mowing. It’s important to get rid of it, as it can restrict your grass’s growth. Thankfully, this weed is usually fairly responsive to repeated pulling, and keeping the area in which it appeared clean.

As you can probably guess by the name, selfheal has a number of medicinal uses. Traditionally, it has been used to heal wounds and burns, as well as stop bleeding. The tannins in the plant also lend it an anti-inflammatory quality. It has also been used as a tea to soothe a sore throat. It is also used for diarrhea, stomach cramps, and inflammatory bowel disease, such as Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis. Healalls can also be used to relieve rheumatoid arthritis. More interestingly, some applications have had selfheal used as a remedy for heart disease.

Final Thoughts

By now you should have learned about how these different kinds of weeds with purple flowers present themselves. The flowers can be pretty, but it is always good to know when these plants are worth keeping around. When keeping your garden, you should be doubly sure of what is growing in your patches, and take care that everything is growing with intention. This is why identification is so important; knowing what you’re dealing with can really help make for a purposeful and pleasing garden.

If you find yourself overrun with weeds, it may be a good time to figure out the best way to get rid of them. This way, you can ensure that your garden stays neat and free of unwanted growth. Of course, if you find other uses for the weeds you pull up, then all the better! Remember to leave at least 80% of the leaves and flowers of whatever you harvest behind, as this is good for the bees. Arming ourselves with the knowledge required to keep a healthy garden, regardless of what’s growing in it, makes it easy to enjoy this hobby even further.