When it comes to spring lawn care, ridding your lawn of common weeds is one of the most important things you will do. If left on your lawn, weeds will steal important nutrients from your grass, resulting in your grass looking brown, sickly, and unhealthy.
Being able to identify common Connecticut weeds is a big first step in eliminating them, as not all weeds should be dealt with the same way. Here are 4 common weeds found in Connecticut lawns, and how you can identify, eliminate, and prevent them from returning.
Crabgrass (Digitaria species)
Mid to late April is the primary time when crabgrass begins to sprout. Once the soil temperature hits 50 degrees, and a warm rain occurs, these common weeds germinate and spread rapidly. One crabgrass plant can germinate over 1,000 seeds in a single season, so you have to be ready.
Crabgrass is an annual weed that grows very close to the ground. The leaves branch out from the stem in a star formation, resembling the legs of a crab (which is where the name crabgrass comes from.) If it’s a heavy crabgrass infestation, the best method of elimination is a post-emergent herbicide. If it’s light, hand pulling the weed and roots is best, as crabgrass is relatively easy to pull. A pre-emergent herbicide (applied before sprouting) is an effective way of preventing crabgrass germination in the early spring months.
Nutsedge (Cyperus esculentus)
Nutsedge is a perennial weed that begins to sprout around the same time as crabgrass. As they grow they shed their seeds, resulting in the rapid spread of these virulent plants. If nutsedge is not dealt with right away, it will continue to come back year after year, causing strain on your lawn and landscape.
Nutsedge is one of the easiest weeds to identify due to its height, growing to be 1-3 feet tall. It also grows quicker than grass, so it always stands out. At the end of the long grass blades is the sprout of 3 yellow flowers, which aids in identification. Nutsedge has extensive root systems called rhizomes that grow deep into the ground. These root systems mean the most effective way of eliminating and preventing nutsedge is to hand pull them. If you wait for a day when the soil is moist, it will be extremely easy to pull up the weed with the root.
Annual Bluegrass (Poa annua)
This cool-seasoned annual weed is a common visitor to Connecticut lawns in the early spring months. These common weeds also germinate around the end of April, so getting outside now and eliminating them is critical to the health of your lawn in the summer and beyond.
The leaf blades have a slight curve at the end giving them boat-shaped tips. The blades are green, and the tips are white. Bluegrass thrives in cool, moist areas so it will most commonly be seen in areas where there is shade and less heat. The best way to eliminate these weeds is by spraying a post-emergent herbicide directly on the target weed. Consistent mowing in the spring and summer will keep these weeds from growing tall enough to germinate and spread, making it an easy way to control and prevent an annual bluegrass infestation.
Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)
Last but not least, the perennial weed that never goes dormant. Dandelions grow in your lawn and landscape and all it takes for these weeds to spread is a windy day in the early spring months. Their extensive root systems allow them to get a strong foothold in your lawn and garden, while also making them difficult to eliminate.
The best way to eliminate and prevent dandelion is to use a tool like a shovel, spade, or screwdriver to dig under the dandelion, ensuring the weed and the entire root system is removed. If these common weeds are growing in your lawn and digging isn’t an option, wait for a wet day to go outside and hand pull them. Grabbing dandelion by the flower head, twisting, and pulling usually ensures the root comes with the weed.
Need help controlling these common weeds? Naturally Green has your back!
Don’t let weeds destroy your lawn and landscape this spring. Contact the experts at Naturally Green Lawn Care here or give us a call at (203) 230-9212 to hear more about our spring weed control service, and how we can help you eliminate and prevent weeds from affecting your lawn this year. Call us today!