Sand spurs are very common near beach areas and are commonly found in kid’s play area and in cracks of sidewalks. Sand spurs indicate poor soil maintenance. They are dangerous especially in their dried husk form as they contaminate animal feces and are introduced into the blood stream through the skin resulting in infections and pain. Hence, they should be removed when they are alive and remain attached to the plant.
Sand spurs produce prickly seeds which cause a lot of pain if they are stepped on or pulled out. They are annual weeds which cannot survive in cold climatic conditions. However, the seeds become active during spring. Hence, the best way to remove them is to dig the plant manually just before the summer is over, mow them, collect in a bag and shove them in the trash. Herbicides are not too effective when the summer is almost coming to an end. You would just be wasting your time as well as money as the seeds still remain dormant and can germinate once again during the following spring season.
There are recommended pre-emergent herbicides which when applied prevent the germination of seeds but the effectiveness of these is not yet fully proven due to the big size of the sand spur seeds. Some post-emergent herbicides are effective on sandspur and do not damage the centipedes. You need to manage optimal amount of centipedes and fertilize the soil according to the recommendations. You may consult the centipede management chart to know what is the recommended amount for centipedes.
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