What is your opinion of the usage of corn meal gluten for crab grass and/or...

Asked July 25, 2014, 11:07 AM EDT

What is your opinion of the usage of corn meal gluten for crab grass and/or dandelion prevention? Does it work? Are there any downsides? Do you know where it is sold?

Washington County Minnesota

3 Responses

Corn gluten meal works by preventing seed germination. It will not destroy perennial weeds already present in the lawn such as dandelion, plantain, creeping charlie or clover. For best results gluten should be applied in early spring and late summer. The optimum time for spring application in Minnesota has passed but gluten also provides nitrogen so an application will still be beneficial if your lawn needs fertilizer. These websites provide more information about using corn gluten as a lawn food and pre-emergence herbicide. Most of the information in the Ohio bulletin pertains to Minnesota as well. Corn Gluten Meal: A Natural Pre-emergence Herbicide http://www.extension.umn.edu/yardandgarden/ygbriefs/h531cornglutenmeal.html Natural Organic Lawn Care for Ohio http://ohioline.osu.edu/hyg-fact/4000/4031.html. Since this is used for cattle feed, check with a outlying feed elevator.

What does kill dandelions and crabgrass? Thanks! amtattson@vischool.org

You will need a pre-emergent for crabgrass and corn gluten or a product like halts applied prior to germination. Dandelions and other broadleaved plants can be killed using 2-4-D or equivalent. The best defense against both is a healthy lawn mowed at about 3 inches.