A purple violet flower Description: Green, heart-shaped leaves. White, blue, purple, or yellow flowers.
Peak Season: Late spring (May - June) and early fall (September - October)
Treatment: Herbicide

Roses are red, violets are blue (or white, or purple, or yellow), and if you have them in your lawn, you have a lot of work to do. Also characterized by their heart or kidney-shaped leaves, Violets can be a very beautiful, as long as they are not in the lawn. Their roots go deep and wide, consisting of rhizomes and cleistogamous flowers (underground, unopened, self-pollinating flowers) which make them very aggressive and hard to get rid of.

A purple violet leaf When will I see Violets? Violets are a perennial, meaning it can live for years. Therefore, you may see it in your lawn throughout the year as long as there is no snow. It begins to flower and accelerates growth in May, slows down for the hot summer months, then continues rapid growth as the weather cools in September.

How do I get rid of violets and how long will it take?

Violets are one of the harder weeds to kill with a selective herbicide, but it can be done. Apply this every 5 to 6 weeks. You should start to see damage and withering to the leaves after the first or second application, with the plant completely killed after 6 consecutive applications. If you don't want to wait for the whole summer, you may consider weeding them by hand. This option will only work if you are willing to dig deep and wide to get all the root system, including the rhizomes and c-flowers.

How do I prevent Violets from infiltrating my lawn?

While there is no way to perfectly keep out all violets, there are a few things you can do to help prevent new growth in your lawn. These include:

  • A Pre-emergence herbicide in April or May to help prevent germination from new growth.
  • Mowing your lawn on the second highest setting to help crowd out any potential growth and block out the sunlight.
  • If you have Violets in other parts of your property, and ever mow them, make sure you spray the blades with a water hose to keep the seeds off your lawn the next time you mow it.