Grassy Weeds - Dallisgrass, Johnsongrass, Fescue Clumps, et al

For practical purposes, we are lumping together the above weeds, along with johnsongrass, orchardgrass, quackgrass, and assorted others.  These are all summer grassy weeds, and all are treated in much the same manner.  Most of them look surprisingly alike to the average homeowner, identifiable only by their seed heads. 

 

NOTE:  Proper mowingwatering, and fertilizing are crucial to the control of these weeds.  A lawn full of grassy weeds usually signifies another underlying problem.  Thick, healthy bermuda grass should choke them out.  If there is encroaching shade, or if the lawn has not been fertilized in a while, not watered well, or not mowed frequently enough, grassy weeds will come in and take over.  If you have shade issues where your bermuda is thinning out, please see our Shade Solutions.

 

You may notice that nutsedge or "nut grass" is not included.  Nutsedge is actually a sedge, not a grass.  For more info on nutsedge, please see our nutsedge page.

 

Grassy weeds are some of the toughest “problem weeds” in lawns.  Why?  Because your lawn is grass, and your weeds are grass, too.  Dallisgrass, for example, (pictured below right) is the exact same type of grass as bermuda grass.  Fertilize the bermuda grass and you’re fertilizing your weeds.  Spray something on the weeds, and you’ll harm the bermuda grass around it.  

dallisgrass

So.  You see what we’re up against.  There is no pre-emergent, like we have for crabgrass, for these grassy weeds.

 

If you have a bad grassy weed problem in your lawn, it may take a full season to get them under control.  Basically, we treat them with a post-emergent product that requires consistent 80⁰+ temperatures to be effective.  So, if it’s still early spring and we’re still having cooler temperatures, we aren’t able to treat them.

 

Rest assured, if we saw them in your lawn and were unable to treat them at that time, we have put in a future service call to take care of them once temperatures exceed 80⁰.

 

When we do treat these weeds in the hot summer, the treatment will cause temporary yellowing in your bermuda where we sprayed the weeds.  We also may have to come back and treat them again.  But yellowing will be gone in several mowings and your bermuda will look good as new – minus the weeds.

 

Only one of the above weeds is a cool season grass – fescue (pictured below.)  We use fescue grass as a shade grass here in Tulsa.  If you overseed your fescue grass in the fall (as you should) or, if your neighbors do, some stray seeds will usually get out in your bermuda grass (pictured below, fescue clump in dormant bermuda.)  We can treat fescue in the winter while your bermuda is still dormant, because the fescue is active.  None of the other weeds are active in the winter, so we have to wait until they come up in the spring, and then we can’t treat them until it’s over 80⁰.

grassy weed fescue clump 

 

Proper mowing, watering, and fertilizing are crucial to the control of these weeds.  A lawn full of grassy weeds usually signifies another underlying problem.  Thick, healthy bermuda grass should choke them out.  If there is encroaching shade, or if the lawn has not been fertilized in a while, not watered well, or not mowed frequently enough, grassy weeds will come in and take over.  If you have shade issues where your bermuda is thinning out, please see our Shade Solutions.