How to Kill Creeping Charlie in Your Yard

Overview

The weed commonly known as "creeping Charlie" may also be called gill-over-the-ground, or ground ivy. The scientific name for this perennial plant is Glechoma hederacea. Creeping Charlie can be identified in your yard by its rounded green leaves. It also has purplish flowers that grow during the months of April, May and June. Creeping Charlie plants are extremely vigorous growers and reproduce quickly, so you must take immediate action to get rid of them in your lawn or garden.

Step 1

Select the proper time of year to attack creeping Charlie. According to the University of Wisconsin's Barron County Extension Service, the best times to kill creeping Charlie is when the plant is actively growing in the spring, or in the early fall when the plant is still growing, but if weed killer is applied will be weakened enough to die off entirely over winter. When herbicides are applied in the spring, it may take an entire season of repeated applications to fully kill this weed.

Step 2

Prepare yourself to safely handle the herbicide. This includes wearing gloves, goggles, and a mask. You should also wear long clothing to protect your skin. Remember that herbicides are harsh chemicals.

Step 3

Mix your herbicide and get it ready for application. You must mix your herbicide exactly as directed on the product label or it will not be effective. You want to choose an herbicide that either has the ingredient glyphosate, or dicamba. Both of these are effective at killing creeping Charlie.

Step 4

Aim your herbicide at the leaves of the creeping Charlie, and work your way down to the soil. Be sure that you do not get any herbicide on nearby plants and flowers, as the herbicide can destroy them as well.

Step 5

Wait several days for the creeping Charlie to die off. It will then be easy to remove. Once again put on your gloves. Use a garden shovel to dig up the roots of the weed.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not allow children or pets to play outside after you spray the herbicide. You need to wait until the herbicide has completely dried first. Avoid using dicamba herbicides near trees or shrubs.

Things You'll Need

  • Gloves
  • Goggles
  • Mask
  • Long clothing
  • Herbicide
  • Garden shovel
  • Trash bags

References

  • University of Wisconsin Barron County Extension: Creeping Charlie Control (PDF)
  • Minnesota Department of Natural Resources: Creeping Charlie
Keywords: Creeping Charlie, killing Creeping Charlie, killing ivy

About this Author

Alicia Bodine has been a professional writer for six years. She has produced thousands of articles for online publications such as Demand Studios, Bright Hub, Associated Content and WiseGeek. Bodine is also the current cooking guru for LifeTips. She has received awards for being a top content producer.