Easy way to improve my lawn

I have some relatively ugly grass mixed with my dwarf fescue. The ugly grass isn't crabgrass, because it just laughs at crabgrass killer. Blades get fairly wide -- 1/4 to 3/8 inches, and it grows in haphazard directions. It grows fairly tall. I wish I could identify it, but I'm not that knowledgeable.
I have been sparying it with Roundup, then planting new seed. However, my wife is yelling at me for doing that because the brown dying grass is uglier than the green, ugly grass. Besides, it seems to be a never-ending project because as I kill off the worst of the bad grass, I get more and more particular about what "good" grass should look like.
I have 2 questions:: 1) What if I stop using Roundup and just overseed the "bad" areas like crazy with new dwarf fescue, and mow at about 2 and 1/2 inches. I am thinking the thick Fescue would eventually choke out the ugly grass -- especially if I mow a little shorter, which the Fescue would tollerate better than the ugly grass, which is taller. That way, I wouldn't have to work so hard, and my wife would yell at me less. Would it work?
2) Although my description of the ugly grass is kind of sketchy, can anyone take a stab at identifying it? Perhaps there is a selective poison for it.
Gary Burton
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" What if I stop using Roundup and just overseed the "bad" areas like crazy with new dwarf fescue, and mow at about 2 and 1/2 inches. I am thinking the thick Fescue would eventually choke out the ugly grass --
especially if I mow a little shorter, which the Fescue would tollerate better than the ugly grass, which is taller. "
That's unlikely to work. You have some kind of coarse, faster growing grass. A slow growing dwarf fescue isn't likely to be able to drive that out. I'd take a sample of it to an agricultural extension service that many states have. If you can identify it, there may be an agent that can selectively eliminate it. Otherwise, if you have a lot of it, I'd use Roundup to whack the bad areas all at once, then over seed the whole lawn. If it really is everywhere, and there is nothing that will selectively treat it, then you may need to whackthe whole lawn
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I fear you might be right, but I not willing to whack the whole lawn at this time.
I actually went to the agricultural station some time and they couldn't identify the grass. They said they could only identify it by the seed head, and I didn't bring that in. I may have to get me a seed head and go back, but they did tell me that selective poisons for grasses don't work very well. I guess crabgrass is one of the rare exceptions to that.

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G Burton wrote:

Maybe I wasn't clear. Manage will control nutsedge with little or no damage to your fescue.
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I got it. I just replied to the other message before I read yours.

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On 10 Sep 2005 19:35:02 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

I thought I read that dwarf indicated height at seed head not growth rate?
Acts of creation are ordinarily reserved for gods and poets. To plant a pine, one need only own a shovel. -- Aldo Leopold
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G Burton wrote:

It sounds like nutsedge (also called nutgrass). If the blades look something like monkey grass (mondo grass) but somewhat smaller and usually come up in three blade shoots in mid-summer then it is probably nutsedge. Nutsedge will normally grow significantly faster than any fescue so that halfway between your normal mowing interval you have perhaps 4 to 6 inch blades towing over your slower growing fescue. There is a product called Manage that does an excellent job of controlling this weed grass. Mix per directions and wait until about 4 days after you mow (long enough to give the nutsedge time to grow much taller than your fescue). Use a pump up sprayer and add a "sticker" (a type of detergent that breaks the surface tension of the water and makes it coat the leaves more effectively). I normally use a table spoon of High Yield Sticker (High Yield is a brand) in a gallon of water with a 1 gallon packet of Manage. Coat the nutsedge leave throughly but do not drench the dwarf fescue around it too much. If you get a lot of Manage on your fescue it will brown it out (but it will normally come back).
Good luck
BTW, here are some pictures of various kinds of nutsedge:
http://weeds.ippc.orst.edu/pnw/weeds?weeds/id/Yellow_nutsedge--Cyperus_esculentus--s.html
http://www.oisat.org/pests/weeds/sedges/nutsedge.html
http://www.agf.gov.bc.ca/cropprot/weedguid/purplent.htm
http://weeds.ippc.orst.edu/pnw/weeds?weeds/id/Purple_nutsedge--Cyperus_rotundus--m.html
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Thank you!!
I can't tell from the pictures if I have Nutsedge or not. I will wait until I get a seedhead and take it to my nursery.

http://weeds.ippc.orst.edu/pnw/weeds?weeds/id/Yellow_nutsedge--Cyperus_esculentus--s.html
http://weeds.ippc.orst.edu/pnw/weeds?weeds/id/Purple_nutsedge--Cyperus_rotundus--m.html
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" I can't tell from the pictures if I have Nutsedge or not. I will wait until I get a seedhead and take it to my nursery. "
You may be waiting a long time. Nutsedge is a tuber, so it doesn't produce a seed head. One way to identify nutsedge is by when it grows. It only becomes a problem when it's hot and there is a lot of water present. Then when you mow the lawn, a couple days later you will see blades sticking up a lot higher than the grass.
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On 11 Sep 2005 04:05:16 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Nutsedge HAS a seed head http://www.rce.rutgers.edu/weeds/full.asp?nutsedge
Acts of creation are ordinarily reserved for gods and poets. To plant a pine, one need only own a shovel. -- Aldo Leopold
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Please don't respond to any of my postings or postings by others who reply to my postings.
I had a posting named "Dry spots in the lawn", to which you responded. I appreciated your help at first, although it later turned out that you were wrong about some major points. With no one making an issue of your mistakes, you disagreed with some people who were correct. You wound up calling one of the people (who did give me good information) an idiot. Later you posted to the group that I wasn't smart enough to understand good solutions. It was an active conversation with a lot of good ideas (except yours) and no one else dropped to that level. We don't need that stuff.
wrote:

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On Sun, 11 Sep 2005 09:19:18 -0700, "G Burton"
firstly you are not the spokes person for this list, secondly I was not wrong, and you don't listen, thirdly nutsedge does have a seed head and any other opinion is fantasy and misinformation, which you seem to thrive on.....
Acts of creation are ordinarily reserved for gods and poets. To plant a pine, one need only own a shovel. -- Aldo Leopold
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"Nutsedge HAS a seed head http://www.rce.rutgers.edu/weeds/full.asp?nutsedge "
Thanks for pointing that out. You are correct. I thought it reproduced only via tubers. I guess I always mowed or got rid of any I saw before they got to the seed point.
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I'm hoping someone is still following this, because I finally got some new information.
I finally had the ugly grass identified by someone who seems to know his stuff. He said it's "wild fescue". He also said there isn't much I can do about it (since the lawn I am trying to maintain is dwarf fescue) except what I have been doing, which is to hit the worst spots with Roundup and reseed.
He's probably right; but if anyone has any different ideas, I would like to read them.
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