Crabgrass Control

Controlling Crabgrass

Saturday, March 15, 2003

Paul Schnare

Seeding your cool season lawn in the spring should be avoided unless you have no choice.  Seed is slow to germinate because soils are cold.  Generally new grass plants emerge just as our spring temperatures begin to rise, and when summer droughts start.  In order to keep the new grass seedlings alive, you must water quite often.

            Crabgrass is a very aggressive competitor to new grass plants.  Once crabgrass gets started, it will crowd out new grass plants, and they will lose out to competition.

            Normally you would use a crabgrass control pre-emergent herbicide plus a fertilizer in the spring to control crabgrass germination.  Unfortunately these crabgrass control herbicides also kill cool season grass seed as it germinates.

            If you are in a situation where you absolutely must seed in the spring, there is a solution to your crabgrass problem.  Tuppersan or siduron is a smart pre-emergent crabgrass control that can tell the difference between crabgrass seed and grass seed.  Now you can seed early in the spring, make a tuppersan application, and know that as the season gets drier and hotter, you can keep your new grass seedlings going by watering, while not encouraging crabgrass seed germination.