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View Full Version : Crabgrass and what to do next?


ozark01
02-19-2011, 07:12 PM
I have a yard of about an acre. Over the years it had gotten taken over by weeds and crabgrass so last Sept I killed all of the vegetation with Roundup. By Oct the entire yard was brown and that is the way it has set during the winter. I am now trying to understand what to do next. I have dragged the yard with a drag-type harrow so I am down to about bare dirt in most areas. In a few areas the crabgrass roots are still attached to the ground.

Here are the ideas I have as to what to do next.

1 - Sow tall fescue and control the crabgrass that comes up with a post-emergent.
2 - Put down a pre-emergent and during the next few months continue to treat the weeds and crabgrass that comes up with Roundup. In the fall I would sow tall fescue.
3 - Any other ideas you folks may have.

I would like to have a green yard this summer but if it would be better to wait six months before sowing grass then that is what I will do.

Thanks for any advice you may have!

RigglePLC
02-19-2011, 10:19 PM
No problem--starting about he first of June you will have green grass. Green crabgrass. Call a professional--cheaper in the long run.

If not, depends on what state you are in. Drag the weeds periodically, and kill everything about when temperatures come down to 85 in August. Warm soil means quick germination. Drag again, and seed with top-quality fescue seed, (with about 10 percent bluegrass). Add starter. Water every day for 30 days. Add fert to build thickness after 30 days. Plan on crabgrass preventer in spring and again 6 weeks later. Use it at the maximum recommended rate. Hire professional care in the future--this is a job you don't want to do twice.

jweed
02-19-2011, 11:35 PM
Another thing is, do you not have the option of using selective herbicides to control weeds and crabgrass on you newly seeded lawn? Round Up is non-selective and would needlessly kill off your new turf around the areas your spraying for weeds? Just a thought. J

ozark01
02-19-2011, 11:51 PM
No problem--starting about he first of June you will have green grass. Green crabgrass. Call a professional--cheaper in the long run.

If not, depends on what state you are in. Drag the weeds periodically, and kill everything about when temperatures come down to 85 in August. Warm soil means quick germination. Drag again, and seed with top-quality fescue seed, (with about 10 percent bluegrass). Add starter. Water every day for 30 days. Add fert to build thickness after 30 days. Plan on crabgrass preventer in spring and again 6 weeks later. Use it at the maximum recommended rate. Hire professional care in the future--this is a job you don't want to do twice.


Thanks for the reply. I think you are saying that I would be better off not planting any grass until after I spend the spring and summer taking care of the crabgrass that will spout from the seeds left since I did not spray until Sept? (I am in NC)

RigglePLC
02-20-2011, 03:29 PM
I am about 1000 miles from you...local advice is better...however...you are correct. I am thinking you might as well mow the crabgrass and weeds until late August. There is no practical way to "take care of" the crabgrass during the spring and summer.You might as well let the crabgrass grow as it will help to hold the soil--thereby preventing water and wind erosion. About 3 weeks before you seed, spray and kill crabgrass and everything else with Roundup. Then disc and drag to prepare the seedbed. Sow seed when afternoon temps come down to about a consistent 85. Top quality seed which is disease-resistant and contains 10 percent bluegrass (to improve spreading and repair ability). Titanium LS is a good choice. Apply starter fertilizer, and a second booster fertilizer after 30 days. Water every day for 30 days. Be sure to seed at least 6 weeks before frost. Happy seeding.

Your only other option is to seed in spring and plan to have crabgrass come up in May--and compete vigorously with your good grass. It will be very dense--but will die due to frost in November.

ozark01
02-20-2011, 11:38 PM
So in your opinion I should not apply a pre emergent now to prevent the crabgrass seeds from sprouting and making more seeds? I now have bare dirt but I expect it has lots of crabgrass seeds since I did not spray the roundup until September.

jweed
02-21-2011, 01:23 AM
As long as your pr-emergent won't effect the Tall Fescue your seeding with, then I would apply it at weak to reasonable label rates at the optimum time. This product is used to prevent germination, selective or not, I would not mix it too strong. Or you may not get any seed germination at all.

Seed at optimum times.

Drop the round up,, and purchase a selective post-emergent Crabgrass killer to spot treat at the 3-4th tiller stage of growth(read the label), about May. A common product is called Acclaim and Acclaim Super.

Pick up some 2-4d based broad-leaf weed control and spot or blanket spray the acre. 2,4-d is cheap but Acclaim isn't.

Repeat every year..:)

On the west coast Crabgrass is not a big issue, it comes up, you spray it, it goes away, just like a Dandelion. But you have to be on top of it, it spreads fast.

ozark01
02-21-2011, 02:49 PM
Another thing is, do you not have the option of using selective herbicides to control weeds and crabgrass on you newly seeded lawn? Round Up is non-selective and would needlessly kill off your new turf around the areas your spraying for weeds? Just a thought. J

There is no good area I am trying to save. I am trying ot get my yard back to bare dirt with nothing growing so I can sow this fall. I bought some Stonewall to put out this week and am going to put out Dimension in April. I am going to use the Roundup to spray anything missed by these two applications. By Sept I hope I have nothing left growing. The Sept 2010 application of roundup did a good job but I still have some onions to deal with. The folks on this board have been a great help! :)

jweed
02-21-2011, 08:25 PM
My mistake Ozark, I was under the impression you did all the killing with Round Up last year and were looking to seed this spring. Best of Luck! J.

Hissing Cobra
02-25-2011, 09:44 PM
I'm with Riggle. Wait until late August when the temps are right. With that much land, lack of irrigation system and lack of a spray tank, you're destined for disaster if you seed in the spring. I wouldn't even bother with stonewall and all of the other pre-emergent products as you'll just be wasting money needlessly. It is a false notion that you must have bare soil to successfully sow seed and you'll kill yourself trying to ahieve that goal.

If it were my property, I would let everything grow from now until the 2nd week of August. I would then spray Round Up on the entire acre of land. From there, I would wait 10-14 days for it to die and then I would scalp the entire area and remove as much as I could. Afterward, you'll have a pretty clean area in which to sow seed. Don't worry about any remnants that are left from the scalping, those plants will be dead and will quickly deteriorate. To sow your seed, you should either rent a slit seeder (both directions), power rake unit, or some other means that would allow you to get maximum soil/seed contact and run it over the entire property. Follow Riggle's advice and apply starter fertilizer the day you seed, again 30 days later and if the ground isn't frozen 30 days from the 2nd application, apply another dose then as well.

Good luck!

tombo82685
02-26-2011, 08:26 PM
You could also try this. I believe scotts puts out a product that controls crabgrass and allows you to grow grass from seed at the same time. It has a chemical in it called sidouron which allows this to occur. I have not used this product so anyone who has information on this could help you out better. Its just a suggestion to maybe allow you to get that green yard this summer from grass instead of weeds.

Jason Rose
02-26-2011, 08:41 PM
Siduron or Tupersan, both crazy expensive and both give negligible results. You MUST reapply either in no more than 30 days after the first app or else all is lost. Even then you will probably see crab breaking through by mid to late summer.

I should define those 2 products, loosly. They both are preemergents for grassy weed control that CAN be used at the time of seeding a lawn. I'm more fimilar with the Hi-Yeild brand with Tupersan, price last time I checked was around $65 a bag that covers 5 to 8 thousand square feet. Scotts starter with Siduron is similarly priced. I've used, or shall I say *attempted* to use the Tupersan, even with following it up with a 2nd application and had very poor results in keeping the crabgrass out. Post emergent control for crab is something I've had little luck with over the years...

I agree with the others, leave the lawn fallow for this spring and summer, work on eradicating the weeds and plan to seed next fall.

ozark01
02-27-2011, 07:59 PM
I am a bit uncertain as to if I need to apply a pre emergent this spring since I sprayed with roundup last September. From what I understand crabgrass makes seeds all summer long so killing the plant in Sept does not really help with the crabgrass seeds coming up in the spring. My thoughts are that a pre emergent will help prevent new seeds from being formed. Am I being too paranoid about the crabgrass seeds?

Jason Rose
02-27-2011, 08:40 PM
Well your post sounds like you are swinging both ways, to apply and to not apply... Crabgrass seed can lay dormant in the soil for years just waiting for an opportunity to germinate. The fact that you sprayed and killed the crab last fall would have done nothing for the seeds that had been produced all last year. not to mention that spraying and killing crab in the mid to late fall is really a waste of time and chemicals, since as soon as there's even a light frost the crab is dead.

I'd still advise using a preemergent this spring, just so you can start getting it under control for the years in the future. If you are going to kill the whole lawn, or spots, you need to be doing that in July so you can prepare for seeding around the last week of august, first half of september for the ideal conditions. If you don't have a means to irrigate regurarly you may want to wait until it cools off more though.

ozark01
02-27-2011, 09:00 PM
That's what I was thinking but was in not sure if I was correct. Thank for taking the time to reply.

ozark01
04-28-2011, 09:11 PM
After I sprayed the roundup last fall I had a brown yard all winter with no vegetation at all. I put out the Stonewall the first of March and so far no crabgrass. But I do have chickweed and a few wild onions.

I still am planning to seed with tall fescue in Sept so my questions are:

1- What is the best way to control chickweed? From what I understand it is like crabgrass and produces seeds for the following year. Does a pre-emergent work with chickweed?

2- Since I have no crabgrass at the moment, do I need to put out Dimension to get ready for next year?

Smallaxe
04-29-2011, 05:18 AM
So you are keeping the ground barren through the summer and seed in Sept?

ozark01
04-29-2011, 07:32 AM
Yes....I had so many weeds and no desirable grass I decided to work on getting rid of the weeds for a year.

Smallaxe
04-29-2011, 11:16 AM
I would be tilling in ammendments all season long, and killing weeds that way, rather than adding all the chemicals... Once or twice a month after a rain would better prepare the soil... :)

ozark01
04-29-2011, 03:20 PM
I would be tilling in ammendments all season long, and killing weeds that way, rather than adding all the chemicals... Once or twice a month after a rain would better prepare the soil... :)

I agree whole-heartily but I don't have a way to do that. The yard is about a acre. I guess that is why I had so many weeds because I did not use any chemicals for 20 years or so.