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Old 05-01-2013, 01:33 PM
itllgrowback itllgrowback is offline
LawnSite Member
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 3
Suggestions for controlling stray grass in my nice turf? Grower says "use Roundup".

Hi folks - last Fall I had a turf lawn installed (Celebration Bermuda, zone 9b) and I let it go dormant over the winter. Early this Spring I de-thatched it, and it's been coming up nicely.

But the last two weeks or so, I've noticed little tufts of what I think is grass seed sticking up above the height of the turf grass, all through the yard.

The Celebration Bermuda grass is sterile, and only spreads through rhizomes, and my site had been bare clean tilled dirt for over a year when I had the sod installed. So I'm pretty sure this stuff has blown in from neighboring yards (that are not always maintained well or mowed often).

I mow every week, and when I do, the new tufts appear within a day or two, so they're essentially always outpacing my turf grass.

Here are a few pics of the way it looks (click on any of these for bigger versions):

I was questioning whether to let it go longer between mowings (to choke out the stray grass), or to cut it closer. But the first option is no good, because that might give the seed time to propagate and make it worse; but the second option isn't good either, because this other grows so fast, it would always be above the height of the turf.

The only solution I can see right now is cutting it more often, but it would have to be every three days or so which isn't sustainable in practice.

I did cut it shorter last evening (with a used reel mower I bought because my rotary doesn't cut any lower than what you see in the top three photos), and I took this pic this morning:

(I took the mower in to get the blades sharpened today because it left the furry stalks while cutting the turf.)

I called the grower to ask their advice and they suggested to spray the areas of seedy grass with Roundup - that doing so would kill everything I sprayed, but that the turf grass would bounce back faster. I'm just not convinced that nuking my lawn with Roundup is the answer.

Any suggestions for how to encourage the growth of the desired turf grass while choking out the strays?
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