Crabgrass is a stubborn rooting grass with the ability to aggressively grow, spread, colonize, and overwhelm native grasses. Forming “mats” close to the soil, crabgrass will put out extensive roots within one season. Left unchecked, they choke out surrounding grass and form depressions in a lawn which will then be filled in with the weed’s seeds, spreading it even further.
So what do you do to rid your lawn of crabgrass, especially after it’s reared its ugly little heads? While it’s preferable to annihilate the little buggers before they get a foothold, you can come up with a battle plan to combat them at every stage of the game.
This means war!
Never forget, crabgrass is INVASIVE which means you’ve got to be constantly on guard in order to keep it at bay.
Guard against invasion
Maintain a healthy lawn with a good lawn care plan — fertilizing more heavily in the autumn; using a good irrigation system for deep watering; overseeding where needed; and maintaining a regular mowing schedule. Be sure to keep grass height no shorter than 2½ – 3″, so that the grass works to shadow the crabgrass, cutting off it’s light source.
Choose your weapons
Pre-emergent herbicides can be used to kill crabgrass seedlings as they germinate. These form a kind of shield over the surface of the soil that stops crabgrass before it has a chance to grow and spread. Timing is key for effectiveness, so application should begin sometime within the next 3–4 weeks for maximized effectiveness.
If the little invaders do manage to sneak in, remove them by hand, pulling out the entire root system. Avoid applying herbicides after the crabgrass appears, as the herbicides could damage your healthy grass and plants.
Of course, you can choose to handle all of this alone, like a brave little soldier. OR, you can enlist the help of qualified troops — the pros at Rock Solid!