nut grass and bent grass - Knowledgebase Question

plainview, Ne
Question by lug017
August 11, 2010
i have a problem with nut grass throughout my lawn. i know it gets worse from hot weather and it comes back every year. what can i do to eliminate this problem? also, i have a bad problem with bent grass spreading on one half of my lawn and it is taking over. i replaced my lawn with sod 4 years ago and it failed to rid me of this problem. how can i get rid of this.


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Answer from NGA
August 11, 2010

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Nutsedge is a water-loving relative of reeds and its appearance in a lawn is often a sign of overwatering or poor drainage. Correct these problems to help control it. Nutsedge becomes a persistent weed once it gets a start spreading underground by rhizomes, as well as small nut-like tubers that establish new plants when you pull out the main plant. The best organic method is to continue to pull the plants, every 2-3 days, removing every visible crown or stem. If you pull them out as soon as they are visible, the plants will use up all their underground stored carbohydrates as they try to grow new aboveground stems. The more you pull them, the more they use up their energy reserves. Eventually, you get ahead and the stand of weeds dies out. If you slip up and allow some of the crowns and stems to reach full size, they again start storing food and energy to return. If you choose to use an herbicide, you might consider glyphosate sold under several brand labels. It can be used on nutsedge with good success, but it will also kill your lawn if just sprayed over the top. Some people paint the glyphosate by hand onto the nutsedge plants which will kill the stems and stun the roots. You must be persistent as new stems will keep popping up until the roots run out of stored energy. There are other products available labeled specifically for control of nutsedge in lawns such as Sledgehammer, but they will take multiple applications as well. With any herbicide, read the label carefully for instructions and application rates.

Creeping bentgrass can occur in most lawns throughout growing season, especially in moist, fertile areas where the turf is closely mowed. To control creeping bentgrass without chemicals, maintain turf density and health through proper culture; avoid overwatering, over fertilization, and close mowing. Mow to a height of 2 ? to 3 inches and remove no more than 1/3 of the turf grass blades at each mowing.
Spring is a great time to control creeping bentgrass, when itis actively growing now and controllable using available postemergence herbicides.

For creeping bentgrass there is not a selective herbicides available. The nonselective herbicide glyphosate (Roundup, Roundup PRO) can be used to control it. Roundup PRO is a newer form of glyphosate that reportedly works more rapidly than the older formulation. Apply it when the bent grass is actively growing. Be aware that this nonselective herbicide will damage or kill other actively growing plants. For creeping bentgrass be sure to spray an area large enough to include all creeping stems growing in the area; untreated stolons or rhizomes may continue to grow and develop.

Wish there were an easier way to control these two weeds in your lawn.

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