In about late June in Utah, when the temperature outside hits on average 67 degrees, crabgrass begins to germinate. Although fairly similar and often confused with Tall Fescue or another type of grass, crabgrass is very invasive and destructive. In this article, we will be going over what crabgrass is, how you can easily identify it by its distinctive look, how you can prevent it from ever growing on your property using simple Salt Lake Valley lawn care techniques, and the best way to eliminate it from your lawn.
What is Crabgrass?
Named for its long, thick roots, crabgrass is an annual weed that can be found in yards and gardens throughout the United States. It is a prostate, low-growing plant that forms a dense mat over lawns, gardens and other areas of the yard, crowding out your other plants. Crabgrass shares many similarities with grass which is why it is most commonly found taking over lawns in the Salt Lake Valley. It preys on the vulnerable areas of your lawn, producing a large number of seeds. This is why if you’re not careful it can quickly take over your green grass lawn.
How to Identify Crabgrass by its Looks
Crabgrass is identifiable by its very thin, blade-like leaves that form a tangle of growth. As seedlings, crabgrass bares a striking resemblance to miniature corn plants with an almost husk-like appearance. As they mature they grow leaves that are a light green color with blades that are about 1/4 of an inch wide. The blades angle out from the base of their stems which are a reddish-green color. This weed grows very low to the ground and will quickly take over any nearby areas.
3 Reasons Why You Should Control Crabgrass on Your Property
Crabgrass is a quick and invasive weed that can be difficult to get rid of, so it’s important to know how to identify it and take steps to control it before it becomes a problem. Here are three reasons why you should control crabgrass on your property:
1. Crabgrass crowds out other plants.
2. Crabgrass is difficult to get rid of once it takes hold.
3. Crabgrass can be harmful to your lawn and other plants.
If you’re seeing crabgrass on your property, take action to control it before it gets out of hand.
How to Prevent Crabgrass from Growing on your Property
Preventing crabgrass from growing on your lawn is a priority for many homeowners. There are a few simple tips to keep in mind to help your lawn defend itself against crabgrass before it happens.
- Mowing your lawn at the correct height for your type of grass means you know how high you can mow, maximizing the height of the blades and the shade they provide. Since more shade means cooler soil, crabgrass is less likely to take root. For Kentucky Bluegrass, we like to see mowing heights of 2.5 to 3 inches. Typically the 2nd highest setting on your lawn mower will get you there.
- Soaking your lawn well with deep watering also helps create an environment where crabgrass cannot thrive. The healthier the grass, the less susceptible it is to infestation by weeds like crabgrass.
- The careful use of herbicides before germination begins creates a barrier on the soil that makes it extremely difficult for crabgrass seeds to grow. Timing is crucial with this type of herbicide, though – if you apply it too early, its effects will wear off; but applied too late, the crabgrass will grow right through it!
The Best Way to Eliminate Crabgrass from your Lawn
If you are already dealing with a crabgrass weed infestation, then one of the best methods to eliminate your problem is to pull the crabgrass out, making sure to get all the roots, and replacing the area with new sod. This method of pulling the weed out by its roots is best used in small patches since it can be time-consuming. Once crabgrass begins to grow, you cannot stop it with common selective herbicides. Other “specialty selective” herbicide brands are on the market but they can cost you a pretty penny on a DIY level.
If you have a large crabgrass problem, it might be best to call in a professional lawn care company to eliminate the issue for you. Not only will they have the right tools and products to do the job quickly and efficiently, but they will also be able to give you helpful tips to prevent crabgrass from growing back in the future.
Final Thoughts on Crabgrass
Crabgrass can be a major nuisance for homeowners, as it is an invasive weed that can quickly take over an area. It can be difficult to get rid of, so it’s important to know how to identify it and take steps to control it before it becomes a problem. There are a few simple tips to keep in mind to help your lawn defend itself against crabgrass before it happens. Soaking your lawn well with deep watering also helps create an environment where crabgrass cannot thrive. The careful use of herbicides before germination begins creates a barrier on the soil that makes it extremely difficult for crabgrass seeds to grow. If you have a large crabgrass problem, it might be best to call in a professional Salt lake Valley lawn care company to eliminate the issue for you.