crabgrass is winning

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by BostonBull, Jul 17, 2010.

  1. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,808

    No need to pull it. Just cut the crabgrass off flush with the soil. Use a sawtooth steak knife. Big saw for the big ones. It does not usually resprout--and whatever does --will be killed by frost.
    If you pull a big crabgrass plant--it will leave a big hole--crabgrass has strong roots. Cut it off.
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2010
  2. ICT Bill

    ICT Bill LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,115

    It goes to seed when it goes to seed, the best advice is don't allow it to, supposedly one plant can release a million seeds, that will blow all over the neighborhood

    Listen to Ric just dont allow it to seed by any means and next year you will have less, unless your neighbors don't
  3. RDA

    RDA LawnSite Member
    Messages: 177

    If you moisten the ground, it can pull even easier, I will often pull the weeds in my landscaping (what little grow there) after watering, they pull easy. If you can't get the root with the crabgrass, it doesn't matter as much as some other weeds since the key is to remove before they go to seed as you know.

    Who knows when it will go to seed, depends on when the seeds germinated and how aggressively it has grown and allowed to mature. Seeding can typically take place from mid-summer to fall in areas that have a true winter.

    I can't imagine it would take you that long to pull all of that area. Once you do that, you should be able to nab any stragglers and next year will be much better as you stay on top of it and get that grass thicker and longer.


  4. ICT Bill

    ICT Bill LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,115

    the point trying to be made by riggle is that the plant will not live through the winter into next spring

    Keep it from seeding

    When you pull it up you are only exposing more seed to germinate, it may look better but you have just set the table for more crabgrass germination next year

    Mow high
    water right
    and BTW it is called edging not scalping
  5. RDA

    RDA LawnSite Member
    Messages: 177

    I am pretty sure I understand that and my comments are consistent with that, I am well aware that crabgrass is an annual.

    I suppose, but it doesn't appear to be the most mature crabgrass ever with stout roots where pulling it will put the area at high risk for germination of more crabgrass seeds.

    I would pull the crabgrass and then top dress, reseed with a quality grass seed and water.

    I am not sure who that is directed towards, I am well aware of how to edge properly.


  6. Stillwater

    Stillwater LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,889

  7. ICT Bill

    ICT Bill LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,115

    Just a pet peeve of mine, I see landscapers running around with weed whacker (string trimmers) and they scalp a swath 4 to 10 inches along the path they walk, grass cannot grow so the weeds come in and the customer is not happy (me)

    I have a service for my house to cut the grass, they had a new guy and he scalped the entire site to about 1/4 inch just before temp's went over 100 for a couple of days, it wiped all of the grass out where ever the mower did not go in 10 inch swaths all over the yard

    Needless to say I have a wonderful stand of crabgrass where ever he went, but I see it all over the place and then folks wonder why the site does not look good, bad cultural practices for sure
  8. RDA

    RDA LawnSite Member
    Messages: 177

    Here, for your approval, is a pic of my yard last Fall (10/19) after I had done my scalping/dethatching/aerating/topdressing/overseeding process (i.e., I mowed for the first time and did my normal process, no special effort as I was trying to show the grass itself to a friend who was curious how the yard was doing).

    She commented on how nice the edge looked, I hadn't noticed it but think of this picture ever since when it comes to edging.



  9. ChiTownAmateur

    ChiTownAmateur LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 386

    Pull it all out right now, it will take 1-2 hours and is not that difficult.

    Get to the center of each plant and pull each plant out completely. I simply find the center root on a small plant, or gather up all the horizontal stems together and pull from as close to the soil as I can. You want to pull the roots out so that they are not emitting a chemical which makes it difficult for other grasses to grow.

    I realize this is the organic thread but look...that's a very small plot of grass. You should water it so that it is not dormant. There is no way your grass can compete if it's dormant against that stand of crabgrass.

    Do not leave it, don't just whack it, you gotta pull it. You're an organic guy come on pull it up!

    I have a front yard 2x that size, i can speak from experience it will be 1-2 hours for you to pull it all. Once you do, commit 15 minutes a week to sweeping across the lawn and pulling any newbies trying to come up.
  10. BostonBull

    BostonBull LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 520

    Almost done, ran out of time for today. I filled a 33gallon barrel already. Pulls out very easily, and what a difference!

    img_6566 (Custom).jpg

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