Spring Weed Control

 

Star-Tip 1004

Gardening Tips for successful and beautiful Landscapes and Gardens

 

There are different ways to deal with weeds in the lawn and landscape. To prevent a "hostile takeover", start controlling them when they first show up!  OK, so you didn't use a pre-emergent weed stopper when the seeds were dormant and now they're coming up all over the yard! If you have Poanna in your lawn see Tip # 1055. Here are a few things you can do about your spring weeds:

 

Understanding Pre-emergent Herbicides

Understanding Post-emergent Herbicides

Selective Post-emergent Herbicide

 

Understanding Pre-emergent Herbicides

 

If the temperatures are not too high yet (90+F), then it’s not too late to begin pre-emergent treatment on your lawn. These products do put some added stress on your grass, so applying during summer stress is generally not advisable.

 

Pre-emergent weed stoppers generally last for about 4 months from the time of application.

 

A good routine for application of pre-emergents in the warm wintered Desert Southwest is January, May, October.

(above “Spurge” )

 

During a colder winter January may be a bit early, but we often have very little frost, so watch out for those pesky seeds sprouting up.

 

The little seeds that continually blow into your yard are your biggest enemy for weed control.

 

Pre-emergents are vital if you do not want to be compelled to frequently apply weed killers.

 

These products come in a variety of types.  Most are effective against broad leafed and grassy weed seeds. Always read the label carefully, some can damage cool season grasses.

 

There are even pre-emergents that include fertilizer for your lawn, if the timing is right.  You can complete two tasks at once this way. (top)

 

Understanding Post-emergent Herbicides

Learn the difference between broadleaf weeds like dandelions, spurge, oxalis and chickweed, and grassy weeds like crabgrass, foxtails and goose grass. Broadleaf weed killers don't kill grasses, and grass killers won't kill broadleaf weeds. 

 

Foliar post-emergent herbicides are absorbed through the weeds’ leaves and kill the entire plant, roots and all. The spray is designed not to "move" through the soil, but rather disintegrates. If used according to directions and applied at the correct rate, it most often won't hurt desirable shrubs and trees as long as it doesn't get on the leaves. However, if a non-selective or broadleaf weedkiller gets directly onto the roots of a broadleafed plant (like a rose, etc.) it will damage or kill it. Be care with herbicides!

 

Avoid using post-emergents when it is windy. They can easily travel to desirable plants.

 

Take a little time and be sure to get the right products for the right pests! The product label is a good place to start...

 

For small, isolated broad leafed weed problems in lawns, spot spray with a liquid broad leafed weed killers like Monterey Spurge Power or Ortho Weed-B-Gon or similar products.

 

Do not use herbicides indiscriminately as the unnecessary broadcasting of chemicals is bad for the environment and a waste of hard earned dollars!  Make your product choice count, stop by Star Nursery and get some help. That’s what our specialists are there and trained for. If the whole lawn unless the entire lawn is infested with weeds, it may be a good idea to bring a plug from your lawn to one of our Store and let our plant specialists look at both the weeds and the soil condition.  The best solution might be one that can not be anticipated within the scope of this article.

 

Another option is a combination broad leafed and specific grass weed killer like Bayer’s All-in-One.  With a single application you can take care of many nuisance grassy weeds and all your broad leafed weeds at the same time.

 

For widespread weed and nutrition problems in your lawn, consider using one of the many Weed and Feed products currently offered at Star Nursery. You can fertilize the grass and kill weeds with one easy application. (top)

 

Selective Post-emergent Herbicide

For shrub beds and tree wells, identify your weeds first. If you have grassy looking weeds, like bermudagrass, annual bluegrass (poanna) and crabgrass in your flowerbeds and ground covers, use a product like Orthos’ Grass-B-Gon or Bayer’s All-In-One Weed Killer. Often mist from your application will travel to the leaves of desirable broad leafed plants and damage or kill them if you use a wide spectrum or broad leafed weed killer. If you can be more specific with the type of herbicide used, you can reduce the chance of plant injury considerably.

 

In rock landscapes, you may want to just kill everything. But please be careful!  Often there are roots of desirable plants that have traveled into your rocked area. Many herbicides can penetrate the soil, especially if applied to heavily. Read the labeling and use caution when applying. Broad spectrum foliar herbicides like “Round Up” or “Complete” are useful here, just be careful when applying.  Avoid spraying onto the exposed roots of desirable plants.  (top)

 

 

© 2009,Star Nursery, Inc.                     Copy Provided courtesy of Star Nursery www.StarNursery.com