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How to Get Rid of Sticker Burrs: Expert Tips for a Weed-free Lawn! (2023)

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Sticker burrs are a pesky problem that can ruin your outdoor plans. These spiny, seed-bearing weeds grow in dry climates like Texas and spread quickly – enough to make you want to tear out every blade of grass. But don’t give up yet. With the right know-how, you can get rid of sticker burrs without too much hassle.

In this article, we’ll teach you how to identify these troublesome weeds and provide tips for removal. We’ll use chemical methods and organic solutions like burning patches or pouring boiling water on small spots. So you can reclaim your lawn as soon as possible.

Let’s dive in. No more sticking around when it comes to getting rid of sticker burrs!

What Are Sticker Burrs?

how to get rid of sticker burrs
Sticker burrs, also known as grass burrs or sandburs, are a type of annual weed with spiky thorns that can cause pain and discomfort. They can quickly spread throughout your lawn, making it difficult to use.

Sticker burrs are particularly problematic in Texas lawns and need professional help for control. Otherwise you may find yourself dealing with an unusable yard! Professional services such as pre-emergent herbicides and post-emergent applications can help restore the health of your turfgrass while keeping sticker burr growth under control.

Definition and Characteristics

You may have heard of sticker burrs, but do you know what they are and why they’re so difficult to control? Grass burrs, also known as grass stickers or prickly thorns, are an annual weed that can be found in drier areas such as Texas. They spread quickly and make yards unusable due to their spiky thorns that get stuck on clothing, skin and pet fur.

Identifying signs include small segmented leaves with dark-spotted stems. Natural solutions involve pulling weeds by hand for smaller patches or dragging a blanket over larger patches. To prevent growth, keep soil quality high through regular fertilization; mowing tips like using a mower bag help remove sharp stickers from the ground surface.

Chemical solutions such as spraying post-emergent herbicides in winter with atrazine or metsulfuron will provide effective control – just remember not to apply when it’s hotter than 90°F! Investing in professional grass burr removal is recommended for full lawn restoration, but promoting healthy turf is still the best way forward.

Use tools like your spray bottle filled with white vinegar/vodka water & dish soap mixture along with baking soda around roots for added protection against these pesky invaders!

Why Are They a Problem?

You may know what grass burrs are, but why are they so difficult to control and such a problem for Texas lawns? With 44,174 views on the co-authored article about them written by Ben Barkan & Hunter Rising – it’s clear this prickly issue is worth exploring.

Grass burrs can quickly spread and make yards unusable due to their spiky thorns, making them difficult to handpick. Pre-emergent controls are not effective in preventing grass burrs, so post-emergent herbicides must be used along with organic solutions like home remedies or biological control methods.

Over-the counter products have limited effectiveness against grassburr infestations while chemical solutions could lead to environmental impacts if not properly handled – making investing in a professional for weed control essential.

To rid yourself of this nuisance and prevent future growth of sticker weeds, you should promote a healthy lawn through fertilization, proper watering/mowing techniques, and invest in chemical or organic solutions depending on your needs:

  1. Pull stickers by hand;
  2. Apply pre/post emergence herbicides;
  3. Fertilize lawn;
  4. Use natural alternatives (vinegar);
  5. Burn patches with propane torch.

Taking these steps will help you restore your yard’s good health without damaging nearby plants or risking any environmental impact – ensuring an enjoyable outdoor experience free from painful sandbur weed invasions!

Identifying Sticker Burrs

Identifying Sticker Burrs
Sticker burrs are a common lawn pest. Identifying them is key to getting rid of them, so it’s important to know what they look like and how they differ from other weeds. There’re several varieties – sandbur, grass burr, and star-of-Bethlehem weed – each with its own characteristics. Knowing how to differentiate these sticker burrs can help you develop an effective treatment plan.

Types of Sticker Weeds

Knowing what type of grass burrs you have in your lawn is essential to creating a successful plan for controlling them. There are several key types: tall grassy weed with spiky balls, an annual grassy weed with small stickers on the stems and leaves, and sandbur which has larger seedpods than other varieties. Organic control techniques like hand pulling or mulching benefits can help keep them under control. Herbal remedies such as white vinegar or baking soda are also effective. Mechanical removal options using rakes, hoes or blankets pulled over areas containing stickers will stop them spreading. Pre-emergent controls may not work against all types, so post-emergent herbicide applications may be necessary if all else fails – just make sure it’s applied after the last frost! With this knowledge, you can tackle each kind of sticker burr infestation in your yard.

How to Differentiate Them

Knowing the differences between each type of grass burr can help you create an effective plan for getting rid of them. Grass burrs may grow in different soil types and climates, so it’s important to identify which kind you have.

Natural predators may be present that can help reduce infestations. Post-emergence herbicides such as dithiopyr or other professional grade products will provide more comprehensive control.

Consistent mowing practices and fertilization are essential steps towards successful weed control treatments over time.

By understanding these key distinctions when it comes to sticker burrs, homeowners in Flower Mound TX area can make informed decisions about how to best tackle their weed issues effectively!

Prevention and Maintenance

Prevention and Maintenance
Maintaining a healthy lawn is the best way to prevent grass burrs from invading your property and making it unusable. Key components of prevention are proper watering, mowing, fertilization, and effective weed control.

So if you want to get rid of sticker burrs for good, invest in these important aspects of lawn maintenance. They’ll make sure your outdoor space remains safe and enjoyable!

Promoting a Healthy Lawn

To ensure a sticker-free lawn, invest in regular fertilization and effective weed control. Mulch to retain moisture and prevent weeds from taking over. Aerate the soil to reduce compaction and let water, nutrients, and oxygen in. Top dress with compost to add essential nutrients back into the soil.

For organic solutions, try white vinegar or baking soda. Just make sure it doesn’t affect other plants or grasses nearby.

Ben Barkan’s article provides insight on how Texas homeowners should tackle invasive weeds like sticker burrs. He recommends investing in a professional weed control program using pre-emergent herbicides, rather than over-the-counter products that may not be as effective.

To maintain a sticker-free environment, practice proper watering and mowing techniques. They may be tedious, but they are necessary for establishing a healthy lawn.

Proper Watering and Mowing

Maintaining a sticker-free lawn starts with proper watering and mowing to help keep weeds at bay. So give your turfgrass the TLC it deserves! Mulching techniques, aeration strategies, soil preparation, drought tolerance measures, and fungal control are all important for an effective weed control program.

Agrilife Extension provides good cultural recommendations for maintaining healthy grass in Texas. Proper irrigation is key to preventing weed growth. Lawns should be watered deeply but not too often, as this can lead to disease problems that allow stickers more room for invasion.

Investing in a dedicated sprinkler system or hiring a professional landscape maintenance company will ensure proper irrigation throughout the year, making it difficult for weeds like burrs or stickers to take hold and spread. Follow these steps consistently to create an environment where sticker burr invasions don’t stand a chance!

Fertilization and Weed Control

Take control of your lawn and prevent sticker burrs from invading by investing in a professional weed control program that includes regular fertilization. Seed selection, nutrient balance, soil structure, natural predators, and proper identification are all key components to effective weed control.

Preemergence herbicides can help reduce the number of weeds germinating in the future; however, cultural practices such as mowing and watering at appropriate times is also important for reducing existing populations.

Be sure to avoid applying pre- or post- emergence herbicides when soil temperatures exceed 90°F as this could cause damage to turfgrass plants.

With careful attention given toward proper seed selection paired with a balanced nutrient regime plus adequate cultural practice management like mowing heights tailored for specific grass types along with accurate irrigation timing, you can take steps to prevent sticker burr infestations before they even begin!

Removing Sticker Burrs

Removing Sticker Burrs
Removing sticker burrs from your lawn can be a difficult process. But with the right tools and techniques, you can get rid of them. Try pulling stickers by hand for small patches. Or use a rake or mower to collect them.

If needed, you may opt for chemical methods such as herbicides. Or go for organic methods like vinegar and baking soda solutions to kill weeds.

With dedication and patience, you’ll have those pesky sticker burrs out in no time!

Pulling by Hand

For small patches of sticker burrs, take matters into your own hands and pull them out by hand. Put on work gloves to protect your skin from the sharp stickers.

For larger areas, drag an old blanket over the area to collect all the stickers in one place. Alternatively, pour boiling water or create saltwater solutions (1 fluid ounce per gallon) as a natural herbicide.

Create vinegar spray mixtures too (4 tablespoons white vinegar, 1 gallon warm water, and ½ teaspoon dish soap). Baking soda soaks are effective (1/4 cup baking soda per quart). This method makes pulling stickers easier once they’re wetted down by the solution. Now cutting grass is more essential than ever!

Cutting the Grass

Cutting your grass shorter can make it difficult for sticker burrs to take hold, so keep your lawn mowed regularly with sharp blades and the correct cutting height. Aerating the soil periodically helps reduce compaction and allows more oxygen into the roots which promotes weed regrowth.

Also consider overseeding if you’re struggling with bare spots in your lawn as this’ll help promote a dense turf that’s less inviting for weeds to grow. Fertilizer selection should be tailored specifically for what type of grass you have since different nutrients are needed based on what species of turfgrass is present in order to maintain a healthy lawn resistant against weed invasion.

An ergonomic weeder or root removal tool may be necessary when removing thick patches of stickers manually, but pre-emergence herbicides such as atrazine or Metsulfuron can also assist greatly with controlling these pests while still preserving plant health – just remember not to apply them when temperatures exceed 90°F!

Finally, investing in an effective stand-up weeder like Worth Garden’s product could save time by making it easier and faster than ever before to pull out stubborn weeds from hard soils without having back pain afterwards!

All these steps combined ensure that no matter how bad sticker burr infestation has become on your property they don’t get any worse – instead reclaiming full use once again after taking control over pesky sharp spiky balls forever!

Using Gardening Equipment

Grab your ergonomic weeder or root removal tool and get to work on pesky sticker burrs! Understand the growth patterns of these weeds, including their natural predators, mowing frequency, and fertilization rates. Dithiopyr post-emergent herbicide can be used after the last frost to remove them.

Invest in a foot pedal operated sticker picker to dislodge seed pods without using your hands. If that’s not an option, try using a propane hand torch. Ensure there’s enough moisture around before burning patches of stickers as it could kill nearby grass or plants quickly.

Don’t forget about collecting loose burrs: drag rakes over leaves or lay fuzzy blankets on the ground and put cinder blocks on two corners. Pull the blanket over the stickers for easy collection.

With all these tools, getting rid of sticker burrs should be easier. Now let’s move onto cutting the grass…

Using Herbicides or Other Chemical Methods

Take control of your lawn and fight back against sticker burrs with the help of herbicides or other chemical methods. Sprays are an effective way to eliminate these pesky weeds, but they should be used with caution as some can damage grass and nearby plants.

Heat treatment is another way to get rid of sticker burrs in just a few minutes – by burning patches carefully you can make sure that no other living things will suffer from this solution. Boiling water may also work if you pour it on a small patch, however take into account that it might harm nearby vegetation too.

Biological control is one more option for eliminating sticker burr infestations; many insects feed off these weeds making them ideal natural predators.

Mechanical removal may include hoeing the soil around each weed or dragging blankets over large patches in order to collect all loose stickers at once – but beware not to spread any viable seeds when doing so.

Finally, there’s always post-emergence herbicide applications (e.g., Atrazine or Metsulfuron) which have proven effective; yet before applying such products don’t forget to read their label thoroughly first.

Investing in an instant lawn could be another great alternative as well since newly planted turfgrass won’t allow any new weed invasion for quite some time after installation – giving you enough time until the label instructions start wearing off again…

Using Organic Methods

Take control of your lawn with organic methods and fight back against sticker burrs without the use of harsh herbicides.
Consider companion planting to attract natural predators such as birds or beneficial insects.
Use organic mulches for weed barriers.
Apply compost tea as a nutrient-rich fertilizer for grass growth.
Sprinkle baking soda on top of stickers and around their roots.

Founder Ben Barkan from HomeHarvest LLC is a certified permaculture designer. He designs beautiful edible landscapes that are both sustainable and low maintenance – perfect for fighting against sticker burr infestations!
With his help, you can get rid of those pesky weeds in no time while ensuring your lawn remains healthy all year round.

Specific Techniques for Removing Sticker Burrs

Specific Techniques for Removing Sticker Burrs
Removing sticker burrs from your lawn doesn’t have to be daunting. Drag an old blanket over the affected area. Apply pre- and post-emergent herbicides. Pinch the base of the stem between your fingers. Or use white vinegar or a vodka-water-dish soap mixture as natural herbicides.

For tougher cases, try baking soda to pull water out of weeds and kill them. Or burn patches with a propane hand torch. Pour boiling water on small patches for quick results.

Dragging an Old Blanket

Dragging a fuzzy blanket over your lawn is an effective way to quickly collect those pesky sticker burrs and restore your backyard oasis. Sticky seeds can be removed using natural methods, such as dragging an old blanket, which will pick up all of the loose stickers in one pass.

Before applying pre- or post-emergent herbicides for biological control, it’s important to understand how they work and use caution when handling these products. Mechanical removal of grass burrs by pinching the base of each stem between fingers should be done before using any kind of weed killer chemical product; this ensures only weeds are targeted and not beneficial plants nearby.

Having a strong lawn maintenance program in place with proper fertilization practices is essential for preventing weed growth, including grass burr infestations. With regular mowing, watering schedules, and soil testing results incorporated into fertilizer application decisions – and diligent monitoring – you’ll have greater success keeping those unwanted visitors at bay.

Enjoy a beautiful landscape you can call home sweet home again, with peace of mind knowing you’ve taken steps toward creating sustainable land stewardship. Even if there’s still ground to cover in terms preparation for future weather patterns or other environmental changes that may come our way down the road!

Applying Pre-emergent and Post-emergent Herbicides

Take control of the sticker burr situation and apply pre-emergent and post-emergent herbicides accordingly to ensure you’re getting the best results for your lawn. Selecting an appropriate herbicide is key, as weed resistance can develop if products are overused.

It’s important to read label instructions carefully before application, paying attention to active ingredients such as dithiopyr or metsulfuron methyl which have been proven effective against grass burrs.

Timing applications correctly also plays a major role in success: fall preemergence applications should be made prior to germination while winter post-emergency treatments target existing weeds.

Consider environmental impact when selecting product type and application frequency; organic options may cost more but help reduce pollution from chemicals leaching into soil or water sources near your property.

Finally, remember that preventing stickers is always better than dealing with them; these painful reminders will quickly take over if left unchecked!

Pinching the Base of the Stem

With one swift motion, you can easily pinch the base of the stem between your fingers and gently pull out its roots – banishing those pesky sticker burrs from your lawn once and for all. This is an effective solution that could help you win in this battle against weeds.

A diverse blend of native plants may also make a huge difference, as natural predators often thrive among different types of soil and dormant seeds in these environments. Establishing good plant diversity is always a great defense against weed infestations like sticker burrs; it’s even better when coupled with proper fertilization and herbicide applications throughout the spring season to ensure long-term success!

Applying pre-emergent or post-emergent herbicides can be an important part of any winning approach for getting rid of grass stickers – but remember: prevention through healthy turf maintenance practices will always be your best defense.

Using White Vinegar or Vodka-water-dish Soap Mixture

You can use a natural herbicide such as white vinegar or a vodka-water-dish soap mixture to efficiently and effectively combat sticker burrs in your lawn. Wear safety glasses when spraying vinegar around the yard. Wearing gloves is important when using vodka. Mix equal parts water and dish soap with some vodka, and you’ll get an effective solution that’ll kill most of the sticker burrs on contact without harming other plants or grasses. The easy grabber tool makes removing these painful reminders from your property much easier.

Using Baking Soda

Sprinkle baking soda on top of sticker burrs and around their roots to pull water out of them, killing the weeds. It’s an effective natural solution, using no chemicals, so won’t harm your soil or other plants. It’s a great way to combat sticker burrs without resorting to chemical solutions like pre- and post-emergent herbicides.

With proper lawn maintenance such as using weed barriers and fertilizing regularly, you can create a strong defense against future infestations. But don’t forget to apply pre- and post-emergent herbicides as part of your action plan.

Baking soda deserves its place in your arsenal for combating these pesky weeds. It’s effective at killing both small patches or large areas quickly.

Burning Patches of Sticker Burrs

Burn away sticker burrs with a propane hand torch – just make sure to wet the grass around your patches first. Wear safety glasses and work gloves as a safety precaution. Have a hose nearby in case of flare-ups.

Mowing can help remove sharp stickers from weeds, but don’t mow too short as it weakens the turfgrass and allows more sticker growth. A zero turn mower or tall handle is ideal for larger lawns, as they have greater reach around obstacles like trees or rocks – but be careful on uneven terrain!

Pre-emergent herbicides should be applied after the last frost – usually late winter/early spring. Postemergent herbicides need two split applications of preemergence products in summer – mid May & early June.

To stop weed spreaders from scattering seeds, use mulching tips, or place yard waste bags over them before dumping collected debris (in accordance with local laws).

Finally, choose plants resistant to grass burrs where possible.

Pouring Boiling Water on Small Patches

For a fast and easy solution, pour boiling water on small patches of sticker burrs to kill them without harming nearby grass or plants. Boiling water is a natural predator for these pesky weeds that can quickly spread across your yard if not taken care of.

This method will only work in very small areas so it’s important to recognize the signs of an infestation early and take measures such as mulching methods, composting solutions, or mechanical removal before applying any pre-emergent or post-emergent herbicides.

In some parts of the state where sticker burrs are particularly problematic, pouring boiling water over a small patch could be effective in killing off those stickers without causing damage to other plants around it.

Make sure you have safety glasses and work gloves on when doing this as hot liquid splashing onto skin may cause injury!

Before moving onto more herbicide treatments, give this simple solution for getting rid of sticker burrs from your lawn one quick try – you might just find yourself with fewer stickers than before!

Professional Help for Sticker Burr Control

Professional Help for Sticker Burr Control
Getting rid of sticker burrs can be difficult and frustrating. Over-the-counter products aren’t effective against grass burrs, so it’s best to invest in a professional. Professional help ensures the job’s done effectively and efficiently, saving you time and money in the long run.

Why Over-the-counter Products Are Ineffective

Don’t be fooled by over-the-counter products – they’re ineffective in controlling sticker burrs and won’t help you solve your problem. While these products may seem like a quick fix, their lack of potency makes them inadequate for tackling the underlying issues associated with grass burr infestations.

Identifying warning signs early on can save time and money down the road as it gives homeowners more options to consider when deciding how best to address this issue. Investing in professional assistance offers numerous benefits, including knowledge of environmental impacts, access to pesticide safety protocols, use of commercial-grade products that are proven effective against stickers weeds, and expertise from an experienced contractor.

Ben Barkan is a Certified Permaculture Designer, licensed Construction Supervisor in Massachusetts, and a Licensed Home Improvement Contractor, holding an associates degree in Sustainable Agriculture from University Of Massachusetts Amherst.

This vicious cycle leads many homeowners down a rabbit hole, which could have easily been avoided had they contacted professionals right away instead of trying to tackle it themselves or relying on unproven OTC solutions.

Investing in a Professional

Investing in a professional for sticker burr control is the best way to ensure your lawn stays healthy, free of prickly thorns and usable. A turfgrass specialist can provide you with soil testing, composting strategies, plant selection advice, mulching practices and lawn aeration services that help create an optimal growing environment for your grass to thrive. This makes it difficult for sandbur (the full name of the weed) or other grazing animals to take over.

The Sticker Picker website offers resources such as articles about how to prevent sticker weeds from taking hold on your property and how expert assistance can be beneficial in restoring health back into infested areas.

With Ben Barkan’s associates degree in Sustainable Agriculture from UMass Amherst and over 12 years experience working organically, he’ll be sure to provide you with knowledgeable insight when investing in his services. Taking all these steps will make sure that not only do stickers fail gain a foothold but also keep them away long-term!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the best time of year to apply post-emergent herbicides?

Determining the best time of year to apply post-emergent herbicides for sticker burrs can be tricky. Weather, weed spread and products used should all be considered when selecting the right timing for your lawn.

Pre-emergents should be applied in fall before weeds germinate. Post emergents should be applied during winter after last frost.

Natural alternatives such as vinegar or baking soda can help control grass burrs, but must be used with caution as they may harm other plants nearby.

The application methods available depend on how large an area is affected by this weed. Consider hand pulling, raking with mower bag or burning patches of stickers. Make sure you know what size problem you’re dealing with first!

How do I prevent grass burrs from spreading?

Grass burrs can quickly spread and make a yard unusable, so preventing them from growing in the first place is key. The best plan to keep them at bay starts with proper lawn care: regular fertilization and effective weed control. Know how to identify weeds in your area, and which natural solutions or chemical treatments work best for your soil type – especially in warm regions like Texas. If DIY methods don’t work, invest in professional help. It’s worth it considering the damage these spiky weeds can cause.

Be mindful of nearby plants when using herbicides or other treatments, as they could get harmed too. Avoid tossing lawn clippings into compost piles, as this will only help spread the seeds further.

With a better plan for prevention and early detection, you’ll have fewer worries about grass burrs taking over your yard!

Is it safe to use vinegar or baking soda as natural herbicides?

If you have a severe problem with sticker burrs, using natural herbicides like vinegar or baking soda can be an effective solution. Understand their potential risks and use safety glasses and gloves when applying these solutions. Vinegar may kill grass and nearby plants in addition to weeds, so make sure you’re only spraying the intended target weed species. Baking soda pulls water out of weeds but could harm other plants near them if used too liberally – use sparingly.

Research local laws on the use of non-toxic solutions before taking action – some states prohibit certain methods or require permits. Don’t forget valuable information like proper lawn maintenance, weed identification, fertilization schedules, soil health management plans. This will help protect your birds from pesticide exposure and give your lawn protection up to 1 year warranty against sticker seeds spread by wind.

Are there any special techniques for removing grass burrs from pet fur?

Removing grass burrs from your pet’s fur can be tricky. Brushing and combing through tangles are the best way to start. You may need something more powerful, though. Pet shampoo or natural repellents formulated to remove sticky weeds can help. But most homeowners prefer to seek professional assistance if they have years of experience in controlling these weeds. This will not only ensure all the burrs are removed, it’ll also prevent further spread of the seeds using effective cultural practices.

How do I know when to call a professional for help with grass burr control?

If you’re struggling with grass burrs in your lawn, it’s time to call a professional for help. Organic solutions such as mulching and non-chemical treatments can be effective, but identifying the type of weed is key. Weed identification should include an examination of the dark-spotted stems and segmented leaves.

Fertilizer strategies may need adjusting depending on what kind of grass you have (e.g., bermuda). Buying products from big box stores isn’t recommended – it’s best to invest in organic methods tailored specifically for your lawn over time, by an experienced expert who understands how weeds grow and spread quickly if left unattended.

A pro will provide long-term solutions that will give you results much more efficiently than a DIY approach could hope for!


You can take control of sticker burrs, but it’s not easy. It’s a long, difficult process that requires dedication and attention. So, it’s best to invest in a professional. It’s like a knight slaying a dragon; you can do it yourself but it’s easier with a helping hand.

Hire an expert and get rid of sticker burrs once and for all. Don’t let the weeds win. Get professional help and restore your lawn to its former glory.

Avatar for Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is a published author and software engineer and agriculture expert from the US. To date, he has helped thousands of people make their yards lush and thick.