Spotted spurge is a summer annual. While similar to prostate spurge, there are several subtle differences in the two varieties. Spotted spurge has a more erect growth habit than prostrate spurge. They have similar leaves, which are small and oblong shaped with an irregular red to purple spot, but the leaf of spotted spurge is slightly larger than that of prostrate spurge. Both spurges will have leaves that grow opposite on the stem, but spotted spurge has fewer leaves per stem. Both spurges contain a milky sap in the stem. Prostrate spurge roots at the nodes, spotted spurge does not. The flower of spotted spurge is small and green in color. It germinates in mid spring and flowers from June to September. Both spotted and prostrate spurge reproduce from seed, although prostrate spurge also roots at the nodes. Both spurges are found throughout the United States.
Weed Photos: Courtesy of Dr. Lambert McCarty. Clemson University. Clemson, SC.
A pre-emergence herbicide may prevent some spurge germination. Use a post-emergence broadleaf herbicide as needed to eradicate spurge infestation. For optimum control, make your herbicide application to spurge that is actively growing and in the four-leaf to flower stage of growth.
PowerZone® Broadleaf Herbicide
Q4® Plus Turf Herbicide for Grassy & Broadleaf Weeds
SpeedZone® Broadleaf Herbicide for Turf
SpeedZone® Southern Broadleaf Herbicide for Turf
Super Trimec® Broadleaf Herbicide
Surge® Broadleaf Herbicide for Turf
Trimec® 1000 Low Odor Broadleaf Herbicide
Trimec® 992 Broadleaf Herbicide
Trimec® Bentgrass Formula Broadleaf Herbicide
Trimec® Classic Broadleaf Herbicide
Trimec® Encore® Broadleaf Herbicide
Trimec® Southern Broadleaf Herbicide for Sensitive Southern Grasses