Lawn Catch 22

The situation:
New house to me. Fescue lawn with some bermuda. Previous owner didn't put out pre-emergent last winter, and a family illness prevented us from dealing with crabgrass as it emerged. Now, there are copious amounts of crabgrass all over the lawn (the lawn is ~1/2 acre). I figure fully 10% of the area is crabgrass.
The dilemma:
I'm not against overseeding this fall with fescue, but I don't see how the fescue is going to come up through the areas that are choked with crabgrass, and there is no way I know of to deal with that much crabgrass without nuking the entire lawn.
If I try and overseed next spring (not the greatest of ideas), I won't be able to use pre-emergent to block the crabgrass from re-appearing.
What am I missing? Other than a complete rennovation, is there a reasonable solution that will lead to a nice lawn next summer?
Thanks in advance...
KB
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Kyle Boatright wrote:

dealing
is
crabgrass,
reasonable
Check with your local county extension service (or like agency if you live outside the US.) The options change depending on where you live. In most areas you can eliminate the crabgrass, but I understand that in some areas it will be difficult.
--
Joseph E. Meehan

26 + 6 = 1 It's Irish Math
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didn't put

from dealing

crabgrass
of the area is

see how the

with crabgrass,

without
I won't be

re-appearing.
a reasonable

From what I've read, crabgrass dies back in the winter. Overseeding in the fall gives the grass a chance to establish itself. and you can treat with pre-emergents in the spring.
Bob
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The problem is that crabgrass dies back 6 weeks after you should overseed with fescue...
KB
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Kyle Boatright wrote:

put
crabgrass
While it is not the preferred timing, overseeding in the spring also works well in most areas.

--
Joseph E. Meehan

26 + 6 = 1 It's Irish Math
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"Joseph Meehan" writes:

First off manually extract all the crabgrass you can. It's setting seeds right about now and the seeds overwinter. Dump the pulled-up crabgrass. Overseed the bare spots right now.
Pre-emergent treatment in the spring.
Marc
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didn't
without
overseed
right
Overseed
This would be the preferred option, but there is simply too muc crabgrass to deal with on "pull one weed at a time" basis. That's the fundamental problem.
KB
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Kyle Boatright wrote:

And look into "Tall Fescue", not ordinary fescue strains. Tall Fescue stands up to hot weather because it sends roots down 3+ feet. It drive enviromentalist whackos nuts to see your green lawn with no obvious watering going on.
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Without heavy overseeding, the crabgrass will come back with a vengeance next spring. Even if you start all over (Use RoundUp or rototill the entire lawn) the crabgrass seeds will sprout. Crabgrass seeds can remain dormant for 20 years. Buy 100 pounds of quality grass seed and starter fertilizer. Fescue grows (roots) during the winter, crabgrass does not.
On Thu, 26 Aug 2004 21:56:33 -0400, "Kyle Boatright"

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I live in a new neighborhood and we didn't put any pre emergents out the first spring. Crabgrass was everywhere. We spent a weekend pulling it out of the backyard. Some of our neighbors just ignored it. We got tru green to service the lawn and so did some of the neighbors. The next spring, nobody had crab grass, even those that didn't pull it out.
We all have bermuda, and it chokes off the crab grass pretty well. I don't know if fescue does this as well, and you indicated you have more fescue than bermuda.
Bottom line is, if you can live with it a few more months, then don't worry about it. It will die back. Don't forget your pre emergents next year and a little seeding wouldn't hurt.

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Kyle Boatright wrote:

Thin the worst of the crabgrass by hand or with spot-treating with Round-Up and reseed the bare spots with fescue this fall. Just leave anything where the crabgrass is not totally crowding out the lawn grass.
Next spring, use a pre-emergent to keep the crabgrass from coming back. The fescue and bermuda should fill in.
Bob
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zxcvbob wrote:

Why not just use a post-emergent crabgrass product like Super Acclaim?
Peter H
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crabgrass
be
Have you had success with that product? I've tried two different crabgrass specific post-emergents. With both, if you apply according to the label, the crabgrass goes yellow, but doesn't die. Same with a second application. If you strengthen the mix, it simply kills everything. Sort of round-up by another name...
KB
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Kyle Boatright wrote:

I was in the business for over 10 years and used it regularly. It can burn if over applied, but I never had a problem with it. I'm in Canada though, so it's a different climate. It's southern Ontario though and the summers are normally quite hot mid-july until late August.
Peter H
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I use Trimec for crabgrass after it has sprouted. Need two applications and you can plant new grass three weeks later. As for in the spring you can use corn gluten to prevent crabgrass from coming up but you have to get it down before the ground gets to warm otherwise it will make crabgrass go crazy.
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MSMA is a specific for crab grass, and an all around broad leaf killer as well. Used in mixture with Turflon it is the only way to go after Kikuyu grass in particular and warm season grasses in general.

put
dealing
crabgrass
area is

the
crabgrass,
be
reasonable
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How was crabgrass controlled before the "agent orange" chemicals became available? I am quite sure that if anyone had told my grandparents that they had to plow up the lawn, replant it and spend the rest of thier lives pulling up crabgrass we would be complaining today about bluegrass infesting our beautiful crabgrass lawn.
What conditions naturally give lawn grasses an advantage over crabgrass? It must have been simple, low tech and almost certainly not something that can be done in a single year, but I know many of us would prefer doing it naturally over chemically.
On Thu, 26 Aug 2004 21:56:33 -0400, "Kyle Boatright"

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When you mention Bermuda, a warm season grass, I wonder if you have definitively identified your rogue grass as crabgrass. Sure it isn't St. Augustine or the dreaded Kikuyu?

dealing
is
crabgrass,
reasonable
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The corn glutten is a natural way to prevent crabgrass. And it goes does with a spreader. And best of all it works. I have used the Trimec many times and it works great but will require two applications since you have a great deal of it. The key to preventing crabgrass is to have a full healthy lawn. Crabgrass preys on sparse lawns. As stated above some grasses in the south look like crabgrass to us northerners. So make sure you don't have one of those types of grasses before you kill the whole lawn.
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put
crabgrass
area
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