Pascual Hernandez
Pascual Hernandez
I returned from one of the stock shows to find a plant on my desk and a request for identification and treatment options.

It turned out to be Henbit- a cool season, annual broadleaf weed.

Henbit is also known as Dead Nettle, Henbit Deadnettle, Blind Nettle and Bee Nettle. Its scientific name is Lamium amplexicaule. Seedlings emerge in early fall and grow throughout the winter and spring.

Henbit can dominate turfgrass in the spring.

Henbit, is a member of the mint family and has characteristic square stems. The stems are slender, and can grow upright or spread out on the ground. The leaves are opposite each other, nearly circular, deeply veined, and hairy. The upper leaves hug the stem, while the lower leaves are petioled (have stalks). Its roots are shallow and fibrous.

Its showy flowers are tubular and pink or purple and seen in late winter and early spring.

Henbit is very competitive in lawns with thin grass—especially in shady areas. Cultural weed control practices, such as proper mowing and watering routines, are not enough to remove this invader once it is established in a lawn or landscaping area.

Henbit is most effectively controlled with herbicides in the fall while plants are small and immature.

Products containing dicamba, MCPP and 2,4-D have shown effective control in the fall and early spring.

In dormant bermudagrass, glyphosate, diquat or metribuzin will control Henbit.

If applied before germination, products such as surflan, bensulide, pendimethalin and simazine also give good control of Henbit. As always, follow label directions on all products recommended for Henbit to obtain the best control.

For more or similar information, contact the Sutton County Extension Office.