Crab Grass suddenly emerging - Knowledgebase Question

New Athens, Il
Question by Karen_Timmon
July 31, 2010
My lawn is three years old and was almost all sod. I treat it regularly. Over the last three days, grab grass is coming up in sperts all over my front and back lawn where I get a lot of sun. I've tried physically pulling it out but there is too much and I don't want to in advertently pull up good grass. What is the best way to get rid of it.


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Answer from NGA
July 31, 2010

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Crabgrass is an annual warm weather weed. Handpulling is the best way to control it now. It will die out over the winter months but the seeds it leaves behind will sprout next year unless you use a pre emergent. 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 because the compound prevents the weed seed from germinating, but it will not kill the newly sprouted seedlings. Watch the weather - late April to early May is an ideal time to apply pre-emergence control. At this point, you might want to try raking it out or hand pulling. Next spring use the pre-emergent. That should keep the crabgrass under control.

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