The Q&A Archives: Crab grass

Question: I discovered my back yard (tall fescue) is full of crab grass. It is brown and I want to find out if I should rake the dead weeds up and then re-seed the yard. Or should I treat the yard with a crab grass killer/fertilzer first and then seed. HELP!! I want a nice yard for the spring & summer. Thank you.

Answer: Crabgrass is easy to control in both turfgrass and ornamental beds with herbicides that are applied before it germinates (preemergent herbicides) or after it germinates (postemergent herbicides). Read the label to make sure the product can be used on your turf type and around the ornamentals in your landscape. Use a crabgrass killer now, wait a few weeks and then rake out the dead crabgrass. Once you have done that, reseed your lawn. Later this summer you can apply a pre-emergent to keep crabgrass seeds from sprouting. Be sure to keep your fescue well watered, mowed and fed. It will grow thick and lush enough to crowd out any weeds that try to grow. Next winter make another application of pre-emergent crabgrass control product and next year your lawn should be crabgrass free. Best wishes with your landscape!

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