Getting Rid of Stickers and Burrs in Your Lawn


Stickers and burrs are a common problem for lawn owners. Not only do they look unsightly, they can be painful to step on. In addition, burrs can be harmful to pets who like to play outdoors. Fortunately, there are ways to get rid of these pesky plants.

What are Stickers and Burrs?

  • Stickers and burrs are prickly plants that invade lawns.
  • Stickers come from the burdock plant and have a Velcro-like texture that allows them to stick to clothing and animal fur.
  • Burrs come from the sandbur plant and have a hard outer shell that protects their seeds.
  • Both plants thrive in dry, sandy soil and can quickly spread throughout a lawn if not properly controlled.

Sandbur in Lawn

How to Identify Stickers and Burrs in Your Lawn

If you’re not sure if you have stickers or burrs in your lawn, there are a few telltale signs to look for:

  1. Prickly plants with small seeds attached to the ends of their stems.
  2. Plants that have a sticker-like texture and can easily attach themselves to clothing or animal fur.
  3. Bare patches in your lawn where the plants have taken over.

How to remove Stickers and Burrs manually

The best way to remove stickers and burrs manually is to use a pair of gardening gloves and weed the plants out by hand. This can be a time-consuming process, but it’s effective if done correctly. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Put on a pair of gardening gloves to protect your hands.
  2. Gently pull the plant out of the ground, making sure to remove as much of the root as possible.
  3. Dispose of the plant in a trash bag or compost bin. Do not leave it on the ground, as this can cause the seeds to spread.
  4. Repeat the process until all of the stickers and burrs have been removed.

Using Herbicides to Remove Stickers and Burrs

If you have a particularly stubborn infestation of stickers or burrs, you may need to use an herbicide to get rid of them. Herbicides are chemicals that kill plants, and they can be very effective in controlling sticker and burr growth. Here’s how to use them:

  1. Choose an herbicide that is specifically formulated to kill stickers or burrs.
  2. Follow the instructions on the herbicide carefully.
  3. Apply the herbicide to the affected areas of your lawn.
  4. Wait for the herbicide to take effect. This can take several days or even weeks.
  5. Once the stickers and burrs have died, remove them from your lawn manually using gardening gloves.

Preventing Stickers and Burrs from Returning

Now that you’ve removed the stickers and burrs from your lawn, it’s important to take steps to prevent them from coming back. Here are some strategies:

  • Fertilize your lawn regularly to encourage healthy grass growth.
  • Water your lawn deeply and infrequently to encourage deep root growth.
  • Avoid over-fertilizing, as this can create ideal conditions for stickers and burrs to thrive.
  • Maintain a mowing height of 2-3 inches. This keeps grass healthy and makes it harder for stickers and burrs to take root.
  • Avoid walking through areas of your lawn that are known to have stickers or burrs. This can help to prevent the seeds from spreading.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Are stickers and burrs harmful to pets?

A: Yes. The prickly texture of stickers and burrs can cause discomfort for pets. In addition, burrs can be harmful if ingested.

Q: Can stickers and burrs be composted?

A: Yes, stickers and burrs can be composted, as long as the compost reaches temperatures of at least 120°F for several days. This will ensure that any seeds or roots are killed.

Q: Can stickers and burrs be used for anything?

A: Yes, stickers and burrs can be used in a variety of ways, such as for decoration or as a natural fabric softener.


Stickers and burrs can be a nuisance for lawn owners, but they can be effectively removed with a little patience and the right tools. Whether you choose to remove them manually or with an herbicide, be sure to take steps to prevent them from returning. By following these tips, you can enjoy a beautiful, healthy lawn free from stickers and burrs.

Pros Cons
– Manually removing stickers and burrs is effective and inexpensive – It can be time-consuming and labor-intensive to remove stickers and burrs manually
– Herbicides can quickly and effectively kill stickers and burrs – Some herbicides can be harmful to pets and the environment
– Preventative measures can help to keep stickers and burrs from returning – Preventative measures may not be effective if lawn conditions are not optimal