Because of its capacity to reestablish from its taproot as well as its quick seed production and proliferation, dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) is an exceptionally tough weed to eradicate once it has established itself in your lawn. Dandelion is a perennial weed that can survive in the plant hardiness zones 3 through 10 as designated by the United States Department of Agriculture. This means that it will continue to come again until it is either removed before it seeds or the roots are eliminated. A dandelion digger is a tool that may be used to remove significant chunks of the dandelion root with little to no effort; however, the efficacy of this method is dependent on the timing as well as the amount of the root that is removed.
A dandelion digger is a gardening tool that is in the form of a v. Its purpose is to assist home gardeners in effectively removing dandelion weeds from their land without requiring them to invest a great deal of physical effort.
Dandelion Digger Description
According to the Washington State University Snohomish County Extension, a dandelion digger is a tool that is meant to remove weeds by the root, including dandelions, while causing as little disruption to the soil as possible and causing as little damage as possible to nearby plants. Typical dandelion diggers have the appearance of giant screwdrivers, and the end that does the digging is fashioned like a fish tail. The lengths range from short-handled variants, which require that you kneel down to the ground to pluck the weed, to long-handled ones, which enable you to remove dandelions while standing. Crouching close to the ground is required when using short-handled versions.
Understanding Dandelion Growth
The active regrowth of a dandelion is concentrated in the top three to four inches of the plant. The more of this section that you are able to remove after plucking the dandelion, the smaller the likelihood that it will grow again. According to This Old House, if a sufficient amount of the active top section of the root is removed, even fully developed, deeply rooted dandelion plants may not return. The root tip is also an active growth region. The higher half of the plant that is actively growing back is what dandelion diggers are meant to pull out.
Using a Dandelion Digger
It is not possible to get rid of dandelions by just taking off the leaves of the plant. When the earth is at its most pliable state, such as after a recent shower or irrigation, use a dandelion digger. Place the end of the digging tool in the ground so that it is perpendicular to the dandelion root. Turning the digger in such a way as to pull the weed up by the root requires first pushing it down into the earth at an angle toward the plant’s core, and then turning it.
Utilizing the digger, you should work to remove between four and six inches of the dandelion root. After the root has been removed, rake the soil to make it smooth, and then sow grass seed in any bald places on the lawn. In most cases, the section of the plant that is still rooted underground will lack the energy necessary to produce new leaves and buds. Dig it out once again if you find any signs of fresh growth.
When to Use the Digger
When the days are shorter (less than 12 hours), such as in the spring and autumn, dandelion flowers blossom. It is recommended to use a digger to get rid of weeds like dandelions throughout the springtime, when they typically have the most abundant blooms. Because the food stores in their roots are at their lowest point immediately after they bloom, dandelions are at their most vulnerable state just after they bloom. In addition, this eliminates the possibility of the dandelion producing and dispersing fresh seeds after it has been removed from the area.