The Q&A Archives: crabgrass

Question: I have the greenest lawn in the block, but, 99% of it is crabgrass. How do I correct this?

Answer: You have a challenge ahead of you! Crabgrass is an annual and will die out when the weather cools, but it will leave tons of seeds before it dies. Your best bet is to rake out the crabgrass to the best of your ability and overseed your lawn. Do this now so the new grass seeds will have time to grow and establish over the fall and winter months. Then plan on applying a pre emergent corn gluten meal product in the late winter and early spring to keep the crabgrass seeds from sprouting. Crabgrass starts germinating when soil temperatures are 50 to 55 degrees F for ten or more days and germination can take place over a 6 week period. Pre-emergence herbicides provide excellent weed control for crabgrass but they last only about 30 days. The compound prevents the weed seed from germinating. A second application might have to be made to keep your lawn a little more crabgrass free. Proper lawn maintenance practices can limit crabgrass invasions. A dense stand of turfgrass prevents the weed from germinating and establishing. Best wishes with your lawn.

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