Weed or Wildflower? Here’s How to Tell

Weeds are quite a headache for many homeowners. Generally, they compete with your lawn grass for nutrients and water. Weeds can overgrow the turfgrass and get out of control within no time if you don’t take any tough measures against them.

So, what are weeds? How do you tell if a plant growing in your yard is a weed or wildflower? It’s worth noting that there are about 250,000 species of plants. Out of these, about 8,000 or 3% depict the characteristics of a weed plant, such as rhizome plants.

What’s more, a single head seed of a weed plant can produce up to 250,000 seeds. When weeds grow without competition, the number of seeds can even double. That’s why it takes only a few weeks for weeds to overgrow your lawn.

That said, we also have wildflower plants, which don’t pose much threat to your lawn grass. But how do you know if the foreign plants on your lawn are wildflower sprouts or weeds? Take a look at this guide.

Is it a Weed or Wildflower? Check the Growth Pattern

Some gardeners prefer planting wildflowers to regular lawn grass because they are easy to maintain. For instance, they don’t require regular watering. Wildflowers can do pretty well alongside grass, but weeds might suffocate them.

If you want to tell whether the visible seedlings are wildflower sprouts or weeds, pay attention to the area they cover. If the plant grows evenly over a big area, it’s probably your wildflowers thriving. If they appear in a clump or two, then you’re likely dealing with perennial weeds.

Differentiating Wildflowers From Weeds in a Full-Grown Lawn

As noted, weeds grow at a faster rate than normal grass and wildflowers. When your lawn grows fully, and it’s almost time to mow, it will help if you eliminate the weeds before they start blooming or seeding. In this case, how do you know if a plant is a weed or a wildflower?

It’s easy to tell whether you’re dealing with small white wildflower or weed. Usually, weeds will outgrow the grass and wildflowers. Watch out for “top-outs” that resemble wheat-like seed plumes. If it’s weed grass, look out for tassels.

At this stage, you can prevent the weed from thriving in two main ways. Either chop off the tops or uproot the whole plant to prevent the seeds from ripening.

But some weeds are pretty tricky to differentiate. For instance, is a dandelion a weed or sunflower? Click here to read about common weed types, and you’ll tell the difference.

Identifying Wildflower Seedlings

How do you know if the suspicious plant seedling is a weed or wildflower? For weeds, it can be difficult to tell. However, anything that doesn’t look like a wildflower seedling is definitely a weed. Wildflower weeds have some prevalent characteristics.

For instance, watch out for fuzzy leaves that are tiny during the first few weeks. These are probably daisy wildflowers. You can also watch out for thistle-like leaves forming a rosette. These are Papaver rhoeas.

Get Rid of the Weeds for Your Wildflowers to Thrive

Now that you know how to tell if a suspicious plant is a weed or wildflower, it will help if you have a plan of removing the unwanted species. Find other articles on this site for more tips on effective weed control.

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