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Legit Plant or a Weed

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Smartgene, May 23, 2002.

  1. Smartgene

    Smartgene LawnSite Member
    Posts: 62

    I'll admit it, I get a bit too enthusiastic when trimming at times. Every now and then, I mistake a legit plant for a weed. Is this common? I'm thinking of one yard in particular. Customer hasn't complained yet, and I'm still not 100% sure if it was a plant or not.
  2. LawnLad

    LawnLad LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 738

    A weed is a plant out of place.

    Agapodium (spelling?) or Bishop's Weed started as a perennial... now it takes over garden beds if allowed and is generally considered a weed. Much like Morning Glory. The only way to get rid of it is to spray it with Round-Up several times.
  3. Russo

    Russo LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 287

    I've done it. But, there is no reason for an actual "plant" to be in turf without mulch on a maintained landscape. Also, there is no reason that a string trimmer should be in a mulch bed. I've told people " this is one of the main reasons that I recommend you use mulch: to keep lawn machinery away from you plants." On a true landscape, this is a non issue. Wish some of my clients agreed.
  4. maple city

    maple city LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 305

    I'm usually pretty good at telling the difference between plant and weeds, but I've got one property that is a nightmare.

    There are sections of ivy and weeds all over this yard (in the grass). This year I noticed a furry dandelion-type plant next to one of the ivy patches. It really looked like a weed, and looked out of place, so I hacked it down. It was a plant. :eek:

    Customer was cool, and it is growing back. I have adopted the policy, if I don't know, let it grow. Ask before you cut it down.
  5. LawnLad

    LawnLad LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 738

    "When in doubt... yank it out!"

    Just kidding. When it comes to using a line trimmer in beds... sometimes budget dictates that rather than hand pulling grass out of myrtle/pachysandra, you trim the top off so it's not noticeable. Or you do it once or twice until you have time to actually get to it and do it right. I don't think using a line trimmer in the beds necessarily makes you a hack... you're just balancing your customers desire to maintain their budget at a certain level with the ideal way of eradicating the weed. But I would say that if you do it regularly, or don't have bed lines established and it's your modus operendi... than that's another story.
  6. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,840

    It's normal. This will happen less and less with more experience. It helps if you'll broaden your knowledge of plants, grouncovers, etc. as well.
  7. Russo

    Russo LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 287

    Lawnlad, I hadn't considered your point; it's a good one. I use the trimmer to maintain ground covers on occassion.
  8. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,028

    Pretty easy to do. Its all in the perception of the homeowner. If they planted it and it is too close to the grass or in the grass then it gets the one cut pruning. Thats why there are edges around planting beds. If its in the grass it gets cut, trimmed or sprayed.

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