What is Henbit? How Will I Recognize It?
Henbit is a flowering weed that can be found throughout the United States. It can produce short stalks that stand a few inches above your lawn, and may also produce horizontal growth that is not affected by mowing.
Use this guide to identify henbit in your lawn. Then, read the rest of our 4-part guide to learn how to get rid of henbit.
Henbit can quickly grow to a height of 4 to 12 inches, especially in shaded areas with moist soil. The weed may grow shorter and closer to the ground in some cases, as the weak stems of the plant will sometimes grow outwards instead of up.
Leaves and Flowers
Spotting henbit by its leaves and flowers can be easy when you know what to look for.
- The leaves of henbit plants are somewhat jagged-edged and heart- or egg-shaped, with prominent veins underneath.
- Lower leaves on the henbit plant will appear on stalks called petioles, while upper leaves will grow directly on the main stem of the plant.
- Henbit flowers are white and a reddish purple, and the lower leaves may be darker in color.
- The flowers appear in the spring among the upper leaves of the plant. By early summer, henbit plants will begin to die off for the season, though they may continue to grow if weather is cooler.
Roots and Stems
The henbit plant grows from a fibrous, shallow taproot that becomes finely branched underground. In the moist soil that henbit favors, the plants should be easy to pull from the ground, removing the roots mostly intact.
Above ground, the sparsely hairy stems are square in shape and green colored, but may turn a shade of purple with age. The plant has a sparse covering of fine hairs that point downward along the stems.