On Air

Common vetch: What you should know about this weed

Q:Can you identify this weed? It is taking over my flowerbeds. It’s a vine-like, running weed with small purple flowers.”

A: This is one I didn’t yet have in my “Weed of the Week” photo album on Facebook, but it’s certainly included now! When I posted this weed to the ‘Green and Growing WSB’ Facebook page, the comments section went berserk! It’s common vetch, and goes pretty crazy because it spreads by seed. It’s in the bean family, so you’ll notice a flattened bean pod as it matures. Try to remove it before it goes to seed to keep it from spreading. But this winter annual weed is valuable to some, as it is often used as a cover crop and being a legume, it is forage for livestock and wildlife. Luckily, it can easily be removed by hand. And a properly timed preemergent herbicide in Feb/March may help knock it back.

*Be sure to check out my “Weed of the Week” album under “Photos” on the ‘Green and Growing WSB’ Facebook page for identification of weeds you’re sure to see this season.





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