Weeds as Indicators

WEEDS and DISEASES as Indicators of Soil Conditions

Extractions from Teaming with Microbes
by Jeff Lowenfels & Wayne Lewis

Plantains, Chickweeds, Henbit, and Nut sedges: Reduce Nitrates by using a fungally dominant tea. (Or compost. Added by Sangrit.)

Clovers and Quack grass: Add lots of protozoa and beneficial nematodes; this increases Nitrogen cycling and reduces Ammonium.

Ivy: Fungal dominate tea or compost.

Mosses: Soil is fungally dominant and acidic.

Dandelion: Appear in Calcium-poor soils. Endophytic fungi rids lawns of dandelions.

Fungi tie up calcium better than Dandelions.

Corn gluten can be used as a “pre-emergence” treatment.

Aphids: Stressed plants attract aphids via signals that unstressed plants do not emanate.


Whiteflies: Green Lacewings and larvae eat aphids, spider mites, whiteflies, and caterpillars. Compost teas have been reported to have been effective on whiteflies, fire ants, and scale.