Help! My lawn is being overtaken by what I think is Ground Ivy. It's possibly Mallow, but I think Ground Ivy. Standard weed/feed fertilizer doesn't impact it; and no luck with targeted weed sprays or crabgrass spray. It's become so pervasive that pulling is painstaking -- also, hard to know if I am getting the roots.Skip the weed/feed or chem solution.
Any suggestions on how to eliminate?
Best approach is to go to a good seed store and ask them for a park/conservation seed mix with red clover. If they donít have it the should be able to mix it for you. In the spring pull as much of the ivy as you can, seed and cover with pen mulch or chopped straw. Water regularly and wait. requires a bit of elbow grease but results in a healthier lower maintenance yard.
Do you use pen mulch in place of starter fertilizer?
Pulling the ivy will be a chore and a half. Endless. Also hard to be sure I've pulled the roots as the ivy breaks easily (maybe that won't matter?).
Is it not worth it to pull and seed in the fall?
Pen Mulch is a moisture retaining mulch made from paper that keeps germinating seeds moist and shady.
I rarely fertilize, a diverse mix of grasses and nitrogen fixing clover helps creates healthy soils. If the lawn shows stress iíll augment with a bit of lime in fall or the following spring.
Pulling the ivy in the fall canít hurt and winter may kill some of the exposed roots, but donít seed till spring unless you a do it a month before frost, even then iíd want to mix in an annual winter rye to help protect the seeds through the winter.
I wouldnít worry about the roots too much, not much you can do short of napalm.
The method I recommend uses the clovers tendencies to outcompete the invader.
Clover will come in fast and thick. Roots spread fast and crowd out the ivy. Over the summer ivy will come up through the clover. Pull it as you see it, the clover will fill the gap. Once clover is established mow short. Clover leaves are lower thank the ivy. By mowing short you force the plant to spend energy reserves stored in the roots to send up new leaves instead of expanding its root system. This ďcarbon starvingĒ stops expansion quickly, weakens itís ability to recover, and, over a year or two, can kill off the plant.
Over the same few years the grass seed in your mix takes hold in and around the clover roots. together they form a healthy root system that will keep the ivy at bay.