How to Remove Japanese Stiltgrass

These recommendations are primarily for homeowners and communities that would like to start working in their neighborhood greenspace. For each species we recommend herbicide-free control methods, but have added an herbicide option for some species for those who are comfortable using them. These methods were selected while keeping in mind limiting soil disturbance, reducing herbicide use, and avoiding harm to other species that may be present whether they be other plants/animals. Manual removal is possible for all of them if you have the time. If the infestation is overwhelmingly severe or these tips aren’t proving effective, we suggest you consider qualified professional services.


Japanese Stiltgrass

Microstegium vimineum – Georgia EPPC Category 1 (serious problem in Georgia)


Since this plant is an annual, it is very easy to uproot. Although easy to remove individual plants, follow-ups are necessary because water will wash in new seeds, and the seed bank in the soil is likely full of the species.


Japanese stiltgrass

Japanese Stiltgrass



This plant is so easily uprooted that you can grab a fistful of the plan and successfully pull up the entire root system. Since this plant dries quickly it can be placed in piles to dry on site. 


Hand-pulling Japanese stiltgrass

Grab a handful of Japanese stiltgrass and pull


Hand-pulled Japanese stiltgrass

Entire root system still intact



“Category” refers to description of invasiveness based on information from the Georgia and North Carolina Exotic Pest Plant Council (EPPC) and do not necessarily reflect the severity of invasions in Atlanta specifically. View our Resource “Atlanta’s Top Invasive Plants (A to Z) Expanded List” for more information.

A great opportunity to learn is volunteering with us at a Forest Restoration project. Please view our Calendar of upcoming service projects or consider enrolling in our annual Forest Stewardship training program. For other species removal, also read: How to Remove Our Top 10 Invasive Plants.

If you have any questions about this guide please email