Grassy Weed – Sandbur

(Cenchrus pauciflorus)

Sandbur – also referred to as Cenchrus spinifex and Coastal Sandbur – is an annual grassy weed. Preferring dry sandy and sandy loam soils, Cenchrus pauciflorus can often be found growing in old fields, sandy flood plains, waste areas and poorly maintained lawns. Sandbur can be found in most parts of the southern half of the United States.

Identifying Sandbur -

Sandbur can be identified as a yellow-green annual grassy weed with a tendency to spread and creep. Its typically grows vertically, but occasionally can form mats. It has a broad collar, sometimes with sparse hairs on the edges and its sheaths are loose and flattened, also with sparse hairs on the edges. Sandbur also has flat blades that are sometimes folded and taper to a point. The upper blades often enclose burs.

Sandbur forms seedheads first appearing around July. Each seedhead is a spike with anywhere from 6 to 20 burs. These spiny burs can be painful to the touch.

Sandbur Control -

Sandbur is an invasive and sometimes noxious weed that can cause injury to domestic and grazing animals, as well as people. This weed is difficult to manage in landscaped areas and typically requires herbicides for removal in lawns and other turfgrass areas.


Scotts LawnService recommends selective pre-emergent weed control treatments to fight Sandbur in your lawn and landscaping.

Scotts LawnService is the trusted industry leader for professional quality lawn care. Our exclusive lawn care products include premium grass seeds and professional-grade fertilizers; our lawn service teams consist of highly trained, industry-certified professionals. Contact a representative today for Sandbur control options available in your area and to learn how you can enjoy a lush, thicker lawn that only Scotts LawnService can deliver.