35 Common Garden Weeds

By Kwabena Okyire Appianing •  Updated: 08/17/20 •  19 min read

If you’ve ever noticed the weeds growing on your plants, you can’t help but notice how they are able to spread in no time. It might sound like the best weed killers on the market are useless, but it is very possible to effectively eradicate weeds without having to spend hours waiting for them to settle back into place after a rain or the first frost.Common garden weeds are among the first ones that should be identified and dealt with because they are among the easiest to eradicate and can spread extremely quickly before the roots have a chance to settle. Some of the more stubborn and hard-to-kill weeds to eliminate are the annual types because they are so prolific seeders, are found in most gardens and have included most of the common garden weeds in the first category.

There are several things you can do to keep perennial weeds from spreading to other parts of your garden. If you plant the seeds too soon after the ground has cooled off, the soil is not well drained. This means you won’t have enough water to break up the soil and make it more conducive to plant roots. This leaves a lot of water in the soil, which weeds love.If you don’t drain the soil very well, you won’t have enough warmth during warm weather to break up the soil as well. You will also need to make sure that the weeds are well watered when the weather is cold. Make sure you do a good job in watering the garden because this can make it more difficult for the weeds to spread into the next section of your garden.You can also help in getting rid of your garden soil by providing a nice balance.

In many cases, it’s impossible to completely eliminate all weeds from your garden. However, you will have to do a pretty good job of eliminating the weeds that are most troublesome. The easiest way to deal with those is to use some form of a weed killer.There are several products out there that will help you control the growth of those pesky garden weeds that seem to take over your garden without you even knowing it. A product called ‘Glow Striker’ will help to control the growth of weeds by applying a light beam of energy that will kill off the roots of the plants. in its path. It’s very effective in the late spring and summer months.Another good way to control your garden is to grow tomatoes in containers.

Since most tomato plants will do better in the ground than they will in pots, you will have less weeds in your garden and a much healthier soil, as well as fewer trips to your local garden center or nursery.The one thing that is most important is that you get them in the ground as early as possible. Getting them in the ground as early as possible prevents the weeds from getting to the ground and growing on your soil before they have the chance to germinate.Some people may not like to have weeds in their garden.

If you happen to live in an area where winters are very harsh, the weeds can sometimes be too hard to control. If you live in an area that is prone to frost, you might need to plant some type of cover crop in your garden in order to help prevent the weeds from growing.Another very popular weed killer is Dicamba, which is made from the seeds of the poison evergreen vine. that causes the yellowish dye in the dyeing solution.Certain foods and drinks can also be used to help get rid of weeds in your garden. Herbs such as basil, mint, thyme, tarragon, dill, parsley and marjoram are commonly used.To keep your garden healthy and happy, do the best you can in controlling the weeds. Be patient in removing the weeds from your garden. Get to know your garden, understand what the different types of weeds are and what you need to do to get rid of them. Plant the right kind of plants and use the correct kinds of chemicals.

Preventing Garden Weeds


There are some very simple steps that will keep your garden free of unwanted garden weeds. Garden weeds don’t have much need for help to grow; most thrive on what is thrown at them. You should do as much preventative maintenance as you can.
Mulch around your plants is essential to preventing the growth of weeds. Mulch, of course, will reduce the amount of nutrients needed by your plants so that they grow as healthy as possible. There is no reason why you should use soil when mulching your plants. Mulch will cut down on the amount of nitrogen and other nutrients needed.
The best time for garden weeding is at the end of the growing season or right after the last frost. In the spring it is a great time to weed your garden, as the plant will be producing new leaves. For the garden in the fall you should wait till late winter before trying to weed your garden. Fall is the time when garden weeds are at their strongest. As such, it is best to wait until then.
If your garden is still in the growing season, make sure to get rid of any weed seeds before the season ends. This is especially important in the fall, when garden weeds are at their most rampant. Once the season has ended, make sure you remove all weed seeds from the soil.
If you do find any garden weeds in the spring and summer after the last frost, you can help by putting down some mulch and leaving the garden undisturbed. This will help your garden weed population to drop.
If you do decide to use weed killers, the first thing to do is to pull out the weeds as soon as you can, without harming the growing plants. Don’t use too much weed killer on a single plant as it can cause overgrowth and an outbreak of weeds.
Some garden weeds are harder to kill than others, so do the research and see what methods are best for your situation. Most gardeners use herbicides that are specifically designed for the environment where the plant was growing in. If you are unsure, you might want to call in a professional garden specialist who can tell you which is best.
Most gardeners know a few weed killing techniques. Using natural products that have worked for many others, like neem oil, Rosemary, lavender oil, tea tree oil and others will help keep the garden weeding to a minimum.
Other than that there are two other ways you can help keep garden weeds at bay. One way is to purchase a product that is known to repel garden weeds. There are a few options that have been developed to do this including liquid or spray applications. The liquid variety has proven to be quite effective against most garden pests.
The other method to deal with garden weeds is plant food that is mixed with water. It works by slowing down the growth of weeds by killing off the roots.
Many people use the following methods of prevention for plant diseases. Pests and diseases like aphids and white flies are dealt with by using pesticides. Most often it is best to avoid using pesticides when dealing with bugs and diseases.
Insects can also be repelled by plant foods. This is done by putting small amounts of insecticidal sprays around the plant roots at the beginning of each growing season. This is especially good when young plants are growing.
Soil aerators and fungicides are also used to keep weeds under control. They reduce the need for pesticides and weed killers. You can also get rid of them by using organic fertilizers.

Garden Weeds  Types

It’s important to distinguish between various weed types both because it helps identify these weeds, as well as understand how to control them.

Grassy Weeds

Grassy weeds are a common type of weed, also known as monocots. This means that a grass seed will sprout as one leaf. They have round and hollow stems, with nodes, while the leaves are long, with parallel veins.

Depending on their life cycle, grassy weeds can either be annual or perennial. It’s important to know this in order to choose a successful control procedure.

Annual grassy weeds live their lives for just one season, which starts in the spring when the soil temperature gets to about 18ᵒC. They have an accelerated growth all through the summer when they finally produce flowers and seeds, which begin another cycle in the spring.

The main enemy of grassy weeds is autumn’s first frost. However, each of these noxious weeds produces thousands of seeds, so they’re very likely to sprout stronger in springtime.

Perennial weeds live for over two years and don’t reproduce from seeds, but from their stems, which can be either underground or above-ground. However, some perennial weeds produce seeds too, which increases their chances of survival.

Broadleaf Weeds

Unlike grassy weeds, broadleaf weeds boast leaves that are wider rather than long. These bladelike leaves have a primary vein from which other, smaller veins emerge. As such, you can easily identify them because they look nothing like grass.

These are very aggressive weeds that take advantage of any weak areas in lawns. There are both annual and perennial broadleaf weeds, with the same reproduction characteristics as in the case of grassy weeds.

Broadleaf weeds have fibrous roots of different types: either a root system, one big taproot, or both of these. Their stems can be round or square. Broadleaf weeds grow in different ways, either upright or spreading very close to the ground.

Woody and Vining Weeds

Woody weeds are the strongest sort of weeds, as well as the tallest. That makes them the most difficult to control, especially when they spread on lawns and pastures.

They have differently-shaped stems and leaves, with a variety of colours for the flowers, and most of them are perennial. Some weeds that grow in vines are annual, though.

Woody weeds are so persistent thanks to their roots. With a deep creeping root system that allows them to re-emerge even from the tiniest left-over fragment, woody weeds aren’t stopped if you dig them up.

There is another way to classify weeds, depending on all these categories above. This will help you further identify the weeds in your garden and start making a plan to control them.

Annual weeds can be:

Perennial weeds can be:


Common English Weeds

With that in mind, here are the most common weeds you can find in your garden or lawn:


annual meadow grass weedAnnual meadow grass

This spear grass grows in clumps of narrow-bladed leaves that grow close to the ground on pathways or lawns. It’s an annual weed that reproduces via seeds, which emerge from its small, white flowers.




aquilegia grassAquilegia

A self-seeding weed, Aquilegia can get up to 15 cm tall. It has purple flowers, strong roots that will make it hard for you to pool it out and blooms quite early.





A perennial vine, Bindweed grows in large vines, with roots that spread up to 10 metres. It’s commonly found in Europe as well as North America, and can easily be distinguished through its heart-shaped leaves and white or light pink flowers, which get to about 2.5 cm wide.

You can control it through digging or using glyphosate herbicides.


birds foot treefoilsBirds-foot trefoil

A perennial weed with yellow flowers similar to those of Honeysuckle, this weed is part of the Clover family. It one of the tallest weeds in the bunch, considering it can grow to knee-height easily. It can spread in gardens and lawns alike and on most soil types, though it prefers acidic and dry soils.

The Birds-foot trefoil grows in huge patches and has a deep root system. It spreads via underground stems like rhizomes or above-the-ground stems like stolons.




Another annual weed, the Bittercress has small, round leaves that grow in a rosette. The flowers are small and white, growing 10 cm above the ground. It spreads via explosive seeds.








This perennial weed can get up to 2 metres and it looks fairly good. It has blue flowers, shaped like tiny bells that usually bloom in late spring or early summer.

With evergreen basal leaves, this weed needs full sun or a partial shade to thrive. The best soils for it are moist but drained with an alkaline or neutral pHs, such as Chalk, Clay, Loam or Sandy.



cat's earCats Ear

A sturdy weed with serious taproots, Cats Ear is a perennial weed with leaves that can grow up to 20 cm. Basically, it looks like a Dandelion, but without the flowers and usually grows on dry soils.








An annual plant that’s very hardy and thrives in the cool season, Chickweed is a small, widespread weed. It thrives on moist soil and it has fine hairs that grow on one of its sides. However, this weed can be easily killed if you pull it with a table fork. You can also mulch over free areas on your lawn to stop it from spreading.






Also known as Sticky willie or goosegrass, this weed is an annual plant with thin leaves and tiny white flowers. It reproduces via seeds, which are green and hairy.







couch weed ukCouch

This weed can easily be recognised because it features blades of grass that grow in clumps. A perennial weed, it has narrow and wiry roots that are usually banded. It can be controlled by cultural or chemical means.





cotinus coggygriaCotinus Coggygria

This deciduous shrub is commonly seen in southern Europe, but it can also grow in the UK. It can get as tall as 4.5 metres, boasting purple flowers.





creeping buttercupCreeping Buttercup

A tall weed with yellow flowers and six to nine petals, the Creeping Buttercup can get as tall as 50 cm. A low-growing weed, the Creeping Buttercup blooms from around April to late August or early September.

Moist soils are the best environment for the Creeping Buttercup that has a creeping stem which lengthens periodically. It also boasts fibrous roots, which make it so difficult to get rid of it.




creeping cinqufoilCreeping Cinquefoil

Another common weed in the UK, the Creeping Cinquefoil spreads on lawns and turfs alike, especially those that are poorly maintained. This isn’t a tall weed, it can only get to 2 cm in height. Its yellow flowers are visible from early summer to mid-autumn, and its leaves are made from five segments with jagged edges.





creeping thistleCreeping Thistle

This perennial weed features light purple flowers that bloom in the summer. It has spiny leaves that emerge from rosettes and deep roots. It spreads via seeds.







A well-known perennial weed, dandelions are quite resistant thanks to their sturdy taproots. They can get as tall as 50 cm and they thrive in temperate weather. With basal leaves that form a rosette on the ground, dandelions have yellow flowers that open during the day and that turn into white fluff when they produce seeds.

That’s why it’s a good idea to cut them before they produce seeds to prevent them from growing again. Dandelions also respond quite well to organic, oil-based herbicides.


daisy garden weedDaisy

A very common English garden perennial and turf weed, Daisies reproduce and spread by stolons. With its round leaves and white flowers, Daisies spread close to the ground, even if the lawns are well-mowed. The blooming season starts in March and lasts all throughout September.




docks garden weedDocks

This perennial weed has forked taproots that grow quite deep underground. You can recognize it thanks to its broad leaves and bluish flowers that bloom during summer. It also produces a lot of seeds, which is why it’s difficult to eradicate.





doves foot cranesbillDoves-foot cranesbill

This annual plant can get to a size of about 30 cm. It boasts pink flowers that emerge in late spring or early summer and thrives on dry soil as well as in dry weather.





enchanter's nightshadeEnchanter’s nightshade

With pink buds from which tiny, white flowers emerge, this grassy weed can grow up to 60 cm. It spreads via its roots, which are brittle and white. The Enchanter’s nightshade is a perennial plant.






germander speedwellGermander Speedwell

A perennial turf weed, this one can grow up to 12 cm tall. It can even survive in inclement weather, but it really thrives in moist environments. You can see its blue, kidney-shaped flowers mostly in early summer.





green alkanetGreen alkanet

This perennial boasts some hairy leaves and blue flowers that bloom in clusters in early summer. It can get up to 80 cm in height and his tap roots make it quite resistant.






ground elderGround elder

Also known as Bishop’s weed or Goutweed, this is a perennial weed. It has lacy flowers that bloom in summer, 45-cm stems and spring-emerging leaves.





herb bennetHerb Bennet

With round leaf tips that form a rosette above the ground, this weed features yellow flowers that resemble those of a buttercup. It can grow up to 60 cm and reproduces by making seeds or via root fragments.






herb robertHerb Robert

Also known as Red Robin, this annual weed gets to a height of 30 cm. It spreads with seeds and has a strong, mouldy smell. You can identify it by its lacy leaves that form a rosette, its pink flowers and reddish stems.






This perennial weed resembles a miniature fir tree and can grow up to 60 cm tall. It has deep roots, and it reproduces via root fragments or spores that emerge in springtime. It’s also known as Marsetail.




japanese knotweedJapanese knotweed

This is a tall perennial weed that resembles a bamboo. Its flowers are whitish and tasselled, while its fleshy stems have pink shades. It’s strong thanks to its invasive roots that help it spread.




lesser celandineLesser celandine

Also known as pilewort, this perennial weed has glossy leaves that appear in spring. Its yellow, star-shaped flowers grow as high as 5 cm above the ground. It can spread via bulbs or seeds.





morning gloryMorning Glory

Another commonly found annual vine, Morning Glory is a weed with heart-shaped leaves and purple flowers. It grows in different sizes, from small to medium and it can be found throughout the world, in different weather and environment conditions.

Morning Glory has flowers that bloom soon after sunrise. You can pull them out when they’re young or use an organic, oil-based herbicide when mature.


mouse ear chickweedMouse-ear Chickweed

This perennial weed can grow up to 20 cm in height, and its hairy dark-green leaves look like true mouse ears. It has small, white flowers that can bloom anytime between spring and autumn.

These weeds are experts in skipping mowing sessions, so you need controlled and selective herbicides to get rid of them.




nettles garden weedNettles

There are two types of nettles, but both of them can be identified thanks to their green flowers and jagged leave edges. They have irritating hairs and can spread via creeping roots, as well as seeds.





oxalis weedOxalis

Also known as wood sorrel or shamrock, oxalis has some clover-like leaves and yellow flowers. It’s a perennial weed, with fleshy roots that spreads via bulbs, rooting stems or seeds.



ribwort plantainRibwort Plantain

This weed has long, thin leaves, which is why it’s also called Narrow Leaf Plantain. It grows all year long and gets to medium height. You can find it in both moist and dry environments, in most types of weather and reemerges fast after you removed it.

However, it’s easy to remove this weed, albeit not comprehensively. That’s why you need selected herbicides or repeated hand weeding. Otherwise, it will quickly spread in big patches that will make your garden lose its good looks.



rosebay willowherbRosebay willowherb

Also known as Fireweed, this invasive perennial looks pretty good for a weed. You can recognise it thanks to its ornamental spires from which purple flowers bloom in mid-summer. It can spread via stolons on the ground surface, as well as from seeds that grow in long pods.





scarlet pimpernelScarlet Pimpernel

Scarlet Pimpernel isn’t just the chivalrous hero of a famous novel, but a common lawn weed with an annual growth pattern. Its life cycle starts at the beginning of summer and ends in autumn, boasting small branches that spread out quickly.

With square stems and vibrantly-red flowers, this weed is frequently mistaken for the Common Chickweed. However, if you keep your lawn groomed well, you can deter it from spreading.




This perennial weed boasts a wide network of rhizomes, also known as creeping runners. It can get up to 30 cm, and it infests most English lawns. It’s a weed with purple flowers that bloom from early summer to mid-autumn. You can find it in closely mown lawns.



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yarrow common garden weedYarrow

This perennial grass can grow quite tall, up to 1 meter in length. Its leaves look much like those of a fern, and this weed can survive in pretty tough conditions.




In Conclusion

There are a lot of invasive weeds, but hopefully, this article will help you identify the ones that grow in your garden or lawn.

What weeds have you seen in your garden so far?

Kwabena Okyire Appianing