Common Types of Weeds in Illinois

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zCommon Types of Weeds in Illinois

Our cool winters and pleasant summers make Illinois a perfect home for many different types of weeds. Our team of lawn care experts in La Grange Park has compiled a list of the most common weed types that Illinois homeowners should look out for.

The Most Common Weeds in Illinois


Bindweed stems are bright green, slender climbing vines with small white, purple, or blue flowers. It thrives in moist soil and can tolerate shade, reach heights of up to 10 feet, and is difficult to pull. Bindweed secretes a substance that can prevent nearby plants from germinating or developing properly.


This cool-season perennial grass spreads quickly, out-competing surrounding grasses for nutrients and sunlight. The blades of bluegrass are bluish-green in color with pointed tips and produce abundant seeds that may be blown onto the lawn by the wind.


Chickweed is an extremely common, low-growing weed, found in many Illinois’ lawns. This plant has hairy stems that grow from 4-15 inches tall with white flowers that resemble stars and round, succulent leaves.


White clover is a low-growing perennial and one of the most common weeds to be found in lawns. It is easily recognizable by its three (sometimes four) leaves and small purple and white flowers that grow from a central base. Clover prefers moist soil and some varieties can even thrive after periods of drought. It frequently takes root in newly seeded or sodded lawns and can create a ground cover that can make it difficult for your turf to grow.


This weed is a summer annual that reproduces quickly and overtakes healthy grasses with its aggressive growth patterns. It spreads by seed as well as by underground roots, growing upwards and curling around the green parts of grass blades.

Creeping Charlie

Creeping Charlie is a perennial weed that spreads very rapidly by stolons that root at the nodes. The leaves are shiny and round with flowers ranging from pink to white.

Creeping Charlie

Creeping Charlie is a perennial weed that spreads very rapidly by stolons that root at the nodes. The leaves are shiny and round with flowers ranging from pink to white.


These tall-growing, perennial weeds are commonly known for their bright yellow flowers, lobed leaves, and downy tufts. Dandelions grow quickly during the spring, summer, and fall and grow from a singular, thick root, which can grow between 6 to 18 inches into the ground.


Goosegrass, also known as silver crabgrass, cottonweed, or witchgrass, can be identified by its small seed heads of bright green color at the top of thin stalks that sprout from a single main root system. This common weed grows well in high-traffic areas and spreads quickly via creeping stems.

Ground Ivy

This low-growing plant has small, heart-shaped leaves that grow in pairs on square stems and has light purple flowers. Ground ivy grows during the spring and summer and spreads by seed.


Henbit is a small annual weed with a star-shaped, purple flower that likes to grow in areas that are mostly shady, moist, and compacted. It produces a toxin that harms nearby garden plants, especially in moist soils with poor drainage where it grows easily.


Knotweed is one of the first plants to emerge in the spring and an extremely invasive weed, known for quickly taking over turf areas. While knotweed primarily reproduces by seed, which are spread far by wind, it is also known to crawl over other vegetation with its thorny stems.


These tall, clumping plants have lavender-blue flowers and grow quickly during the springtime. Lupine roots are shallow, but they are strong enough to take over a lawn if left unattended. The stems and leaves of the lupine plant grow very quickly after sprouting, which causes damage to grasses around it.


Mallow is a common weed throughout the US and thrives in not only lawns, but flower beds as well. It can be recognized by its low-growing rosettes, which turn into pink, white, or lavender flowers that have five petals each.


This common Illinois weed will sprout up in your lawn during cooler times of the year, especially after it has been mowed. The leaves are clover-like, but will have purple veins instead of white ones.


Thistles are perennial plants with sharp spines and small flowers—common garden thistle produces a purple flower. These weeds also have a tendency to cover desired plants, reducing their access to sunlight and nutrients.


Yarrow has clusters of small white flowers and arrow-shaped leaves and thrives in dry conditions. This perennial weed spreads underground as well as above ground, creating a thick mat of vegetation that starves the surrounding grass.

Consult The Professionals

While this list covers an extensive amount of common lawn weeds that grow in lawns in Naperville and the surrounding area, there are many others that can take root in your yard. For more information on weed identification and treatment, call the experts at Winkler Tree & Lawn Care and ask about our weed control program!