Hello I have new sod and there is a weed/grass growing all throughout....

Asked October 11, 2017, 4:59 PM EDT

Hello I have new sod and there is a weed/grass growing all throughout. TruGreen thinks it might be Orchard Grass, but they are not sure. It grows higher than the rest of the yard with a thick base. How do I get rid of it? Photo attached. I can send more photos if that would help. Thank you! Nancy

Franklin County Ohio plant identification

3 Responses

If it is orchard grass or any type of unwanted grass in your turf, the best way to get rid of it is to pull or dig it up. If you use an herbicide, it will also kill the grass you want. With new sod, I think you really want to avoid that if at all possible.

It would be good if it is orchard grass because it does not spread by rhizomes, so would be easier than some other grasses to eliminate. After pulling or digging it out, if you end up with bare spots in the turf, put down some rich top soil in those spots and over seed with the same grass seed as the desirable grass in your sod. If your desirable grass sod is a rhizome type, such as bluegrass, it could fill in the smaller bare spots before some other weed would come along and establish. Definitely, do not let the orchard grass/weed grass go to seed, so keep cutting it so it doesn't spread.

Thank You.

How can I be sure what it is? Do you think it is Orchard Grass? What else could it be?

I wish I could say more photos would help assist me in identifying your grass, but I don't think it will. I have looked at many turf identification websites for help on your question and concluded I would need to see an entire sample complete with roots as far down as you can dig them and I would need to be able to more closely examine the leaf structure of the entire plant.

I have a few suggestions. First, I suggest you take such a sample to the people who sold you that sod and tell them you want to know what this grass is. Often the seed used to grow the sod has been contaminated by orchard grass seed. They probably know if that's what it is because they might have had complaints about the sod from other consumers.Or, take such a sample to Franklin County extension at 2105 S. Hamilton Rd. Suite 100. Call them to ask what time a Master Gardener or other staff person would be available to examine your sample. Their phone is (614)866-6900. Finally, Take a sample to any sod farm or landscaper near you and ask them to identify it for you.

Do you know what type of desirable grass is in the sod you purchased? If you determine what you have is orchardgrass, it can be a problem weed in turf type tall fescue and bluegrass lawns. When there are a few weedy patches, orchardgrass (and other types of weed grasses) can best be cut out with a shovel. Plant stems need to be removed to a depth of 3-4 inches in the soil and the holes should be refilled and seeded or sodded immediately. If the area has a large number of plants, chemical control will be most efficient. A nonselective herbicide can be spot applied (which will also kill the desired turf species). Then the area can be reseeded or resodded 5-7 days later. If what you have is another type of grass weed, control methods will vary depending on the problem.

I noted you might have been fertilizing or having lawn treatment? If TruGreen is fertilizing your sod, you understand they are also fertilizing your unwanted grass, orchardgrass or whatever it is? This could make matters worse until you find out what you have growing there and get rid of it. Orchardgrass and other cool season bunching grasses similar to it really take off and thrive this time of year, so fertilization can make elimination harder. Hope this helps. good luck!