Petty spurge

Pest: Petty spurge (Euphorbia peplus)

Pest Type: Annual Broadleaf Weed

Major Identifying Features: Grows close to the ground, forms a dense mat, only a problem in Southern and coastal California, milky sap, grows upright

Life Cycle: Cool season annual, reproduces by seed

Pest Rating: Difficult

Management Rating: Moderate

Host/Season/Outbreak Information: Grows in shady, moist areas, mostly in flower beds, germinates when temperatures are between 75° and 85°

Damage Information: Affect vegetables, trees, citrus, turf, ornamental beds, container ornamentals, toxic milky sap, provides habitat for unwanted insects in citrus groves, host for fungal diseases, attracts ants

Management Options: Prevention by using clean seeds and equipment, cultural control by weeding, hand pulling, solarization, mulching, turf management, chemical control with herbicides (warning on the use of chemicals!)

Sources:

http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu

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