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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone! I just had a new lawn installed at my house (soil, seed, hay- no sod used) and I'm having issues with patches of weeds and "strange" looking grass popping up. How can I get rid of these unwanted weeds and grasses? Our soil is very acidic and I was told to add lime, which I did a few weeks ago, but week after week the weeds and grasses keep coming back after each mowing. I was also told to add a summer fertilizer and spray the lawn with weed killer and that doesn’t seem to have done a thing to correct the issue. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks
Ryan











 

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no expert here, but i felt compelled to reply as your post could easily have been written by me several years ago when i first started to establish a new lawn.

you say "i just had a new lawn installed"...and my question would be 'how long ago'. judging from your pics, it looks like it may have been a month ago, give or take. that said, you attempted the 'almost' impossible trying to get grass seed growing in the heat of summer. assuming you started with a good seed bed, (big assumption) and assuming you wanted a nice-thick-lush lawn, you would have been required to spend lots of your time watering the new seed/grass to give it HALF a chance of germinating/growing. again, trying to establish a new lawn in summer is extremely difficult, at best. can you say sprinkler system?

secondly, i didn't see where starter fertilizer was applied at the time seed was put down. that would have been very helpful. third, you appear to have what i would call crabgrass...others may call it weeds....which is just something everyone has to contend with. lastly, you claim to have put down "hay"??? well, my guess is you're probably getting some weeds (other than the pesky crabgrass) from the "hay". i have never liked the 'hay' approach but others can weigh in on this subject and give alternatives.

now, for the good stuff. it appears you have a pretty good start on your new lawn. i see lots of "good grass" in the mix. the problem is there isn't enough. so, what to do? well, the good news is you are fast approaching the ideal time of year to make new grass. i can't tell how large your lawn area is or what percentage of "good grass" you have but i'll take a stab at an approach that should yield desirable results...with the caveat being a soil analysis should be performed to determine whether your soil need to be amended. that said, here goes

1. round up on the crabgrass/weeds providing you don't have a whole yard full. i think you need to wait 2 wks. after round up before seeding. (Note: round up is easier than pulling the weeds/crabgrass by hand but if you've got the time/energy, get down on your knees and pull).

2. beginning about the 2nd week of Sept., mow your existing grass quite short. then, rent a slicer-seeder. go over your entire lawn/yard with it (cross hatching -- # # #) to loosen the soil making a good "seed bed" for the new seed you're going to put down. I would recommend you 1st go over the entire lawn ### WITHOUT FILLING THE SEED HOPPER. hold off on the seed.

2. once you have the soil really loosened, then, use a broadcast spreader and put down starter fertilizer all over your yard/lawn. now you should have a great "seed bed" for your new seed to grow in. seed must make good contact with the soil if it's going to grow.

3. fill your seed hopper on the slicer-seeder with some GOOD QUALITY grass seed of your choice that will meet the conditions of your property/yard (i.e. trees/shade/sun/traffic/etc.) buy good quality seed with a high germination rate that doesn't have alot of "filler" or weed-seed. follow the directions on the slicer-seeder for determining the setting on the seed hopper so you're putting down the proper amount of seed. fill the hopper with seed and begin slicing the seed into your already loosened/fertilized soil. you can once again, do the "cross-hatch" thing ( # ) but you will be putting down twice the amount of see you'll need....so, judge accordingly.

3. i would probably forget the "hay" and just try to keep your new seed "moist or damp" during the beginning stages of germination. you'll be doing this in mid-september and it's likely you won't need "hay" to help keep the new seedlings from frying. perhaps you could substitute peat moss if you can find a way to spread it on top of your seed-bed. again, try to keep your new seed damp/moist by several light waterings per day if at all possible. remember, don't miss any spots. SUNLIGHT AND WATER ARE KIND OF IMPORTANT during germination.

4. after your new grass has gotten fairly long, then you can start mowing. after 3 mowings, you should think of putting down another application of starter fertilizer.

5. next spring, DO NOT FORGET TO PUT DOWN A PRE-EMERGENT TO PROTECT YOUR LAWN FROM CRABGRASS. YOU MAY WANT TO PUT IT DOWN AGAIN IN THE SUMMER (JULY) AS IT ONLY LASTS/PROTECTS FOR ABOUT 3-4 MONTHS. keep watering and follow a good fertilizer program next year or hire a lawn professional to treat your lawn.

6. good luck, i'm done!~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
 

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Ryan:
Yes, that is smooth crabgrass. If you have just a few clumps--pull it!
After three/four mowings you can use a little trimec from Gordon's to get rid of those broadleafs in photo 3/4.
It may/may not be too late to put down some pre-emergent--You'll have to decide if it is worth it.
Trimec will not rid you of the crabgrass and will have to spike it with another chem. go to a local Lesco and ask those guys what would be like MSMA on the crabgrass!.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the input guys! Yeah, the lawn is relatively new- planted about 2 months ago. The contractor used some really nice top soil and seed, which helped the lawn sprout in about 2 weeks. Here are some before and after pics of the front yard. As you can see, the upper section is growing really well and full, but the area of the lower section that's closest to the driveway is where the weeds have taken root. The main area of concern is about 20'x20'.

Thanks again,
Ryan

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That's really a pretty place. Sorta reminds me of Maine. Do that soil test. With all of the tree growth, I'm sure that the soil is very high in acid. It takes lime about 90 days to become activated into the soil. Hydrated times takes less time, or a dolomite mix may help. I'd talk with the agent for your part of the country. You're on your way when you get a few weeds and other issues resolved.
 

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Area looks similiar to mine where I live and same conditions.Forget about the crabgrass it will dye off in the colder weather. I would just over seed with broadcast spreader a little heavier than recomended,A good blend of fesques and blue grass and starter fert. in September.Lime wouldnt hurt. In spring, definately do at least a round dimension. Once the lawn fills in ,there'll be less weeds to contend with.
 
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