Crabgrass has taken over most of my lawn..I live in Northeast PA and treated
my lawn in the spring for crabgrass & weeds (dandelion etc,)..we have had a
very dry summer and since I didn't cut my grass (nothing was growing the
lawn turned brown) crabgrass took over,,2 yrs ago I had a company do
everything & the lawn looked great but it was getting to costly so I did it
myself..What can I do to stop the crabgrass & prevent the spread of it..CAn
I do anything in the FALL or do I have to wait until SPRING...please
If mown too short, you get brown, dead grass. During drought my son
just let the grass grow. It was quite long, but green with no watering
while his neighbor's short stubble turned brown. The weed and feed
stuff is horrible - you don't need broadleaf weed-killer applications
every time you fertilize. One treatment with broadleaf, then periodic
spot treatment or hand pulling of weeds should suffice. Seeds remain
after treatment, and arrive later, but if consistent good practices are
used you will control weeds without constant chem. applications.
Pulling one weed by hand might remove several hundred seeds.
Agreed. Once a lawn is in decent shape, it should never need weed n
feed. Spot treatment of weeds is more effective because it delivers
the herbicide right on target and it minimizes the use instead of
spewing it everywhere.
One treatment with broadleaf, then periodic
Treatments for broadleaf weeds will do nothing to solve his crabgrass
problem, because crabgrass is not a broadleaf weed.
Not at all trying to be a wisea** here tnom, but are you saying that what
survives will be the drought tolerant grasses? If you have an inside line
on this I'd be interested so that I can seed those bare areas with it. Of
course, I could always Google that for some more info.
Well, pretty much by definition... :)
There are many levels of "drought tolerant". Some of the newer hybrid
fescues and bluegrasses are less water-demanding than older traditional
varieties. For really drought-resistant varieties there are things like
buffalo grass. What would be appropriate in wherever you are is
depending on where you are (DOH! :) ) and soil types, etc. Your local
county extension agent or state agricultural school is probably the best
starting place for local recommendations.
There are individual varieties or blends that are composed of varities
that are more drought tolerant. Check websites of individual
suppliers. I think Lofts has a summer stress blend. Or check
seedland.com for different grass seeds and characteristics.
The crabgrass will die at the first frost. What you need to do now is
to heavily overseed your lawn and apply a time-release STARTER
fertilizer. Remove any dead grass from your lawn before overseeding
and mow to the lowest setting the day of the overseeding. You may
need to protect areas with straw. Keep watered for 2 weeks. Next
spring apply pre-emergence and apply again after 90 days. Overseed
again in fall 2008. Crabgrass seeds can remain dormant for over 15
years, but it has hard time sprouting in a thick lawn. Buy the
highest quality weedless seed you can find.
If there is a layer of thatch either remove that or rent a slit
seeder. The seed must be in direct contact with the ground, else it
won't sprout. If you use a broadcast spreader, rake the seed into the
grass. In PA you really need to get this done ASAP.
If he has a thatch problem, that should be solved without regard to
reseeding. A slice seeder is always the best way to re-seed,
without regard to thatch, because that does give the best seed/soil
contact. And it's fast and easy.
The seed must be in direct contact with the ground, else it
I'd do it now if he didn't have the crabgrass. But given a severe
crabgrass problem, I'd wait a couple weeks, till late sept or first
week in Oct, so the crabgrass is dying off as the new grass is
Depends entirely on the type of seed. For example, bluegrass goes
down at a much lower rate than tall fescue, because the seeds are
smaller. The rate for overseeding is about 1/2 the rate for
establishing a new lawn.
I can tell from the appearance of the lawn. Crabgrass likes barren
soil, so I suspect a heavy overseeding is recommended. A 50# bag for
a half or a quarter acre is about right (you can do the math).
Actually, it's hard to over do it.
Crabgrass requires an entirely different control than dandelions.
Pre-emergent, I blieve atrazine. Not enviro-friendly. Must be applied
at the right time - timing very critical. Ck. with your area extension
service. Fertilizing and watering the good stuff helps keep it down,
but the dry spells in many areas this summer were beastly.
A tip that was given to me by an old farmer is to use weed and feed
fertilizers that have amine bases. This is in the % analysis on the label.
I don't recall the other chemical base, but the one you want has .....amine
on the end. One soaks into the leaves, and one makes a gas. The amine is
the best one. As someone here also said, a preemergent is good, but the
timing is critical. With the weed and feed varieties, the drawback is that
you have to time the watering, cutting, and application in a fine ballet so
that it works, and it doesn't work in one treatment. Because you are
fertilizing at the same time, you can't apply it every few days or you will
burn it with fertilizer, and that is about as bad as just applying a
nonselective herbicide to the whole thing and starting all over.
Next time, get yer head out in the sunshine and deal with it before you're
knee deep in the stuff.
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