crab grass eradication

Asked November 7, 2019, 8:07 AM EST

Hello. I am trying to regain my lawn from being over run by crab grass. In the past we have used weed and feed fertilizers designed to stop/stunt its growth. I can't say I believe it works. We have resorted to pulling it out and planting grass seed, but it doesn't seem to do much good. Crab grass still comes back. Should I wait until spring to pull out the dead crab grass clumps and reseed the lawn then or does it help to pull out the dead clumps now (in the fall)? Thank you.

Harford County Maryland crabgrass lawn

1 Response

Leave the dead clumps as it will help to hold the soil and prevent erosion over the winter.
To minimize problems with crabgrass, do not mow the lawn too short and overseed bare spots. Mow the lawn at 3-4 inches during the growing season. Handpulling or using a weeding tool when the weeds are young and the soil is moist is the most environmentally friendly approach.

You can remove any dead grass and seed in the spring about mid march to early April. You can also apply a crab grass preemergent without fertilizer but you will have to look for an herbicide that contains Tupersan. This allows you to seed and apply a preemergent without harming the grass. Here is more on crabgrass and management. https://extension.umd.edu/hgic/topics/crabgrass

If you have not tested your soil in the last several years, results give pH, liming, and
nutrient deficiencies. You can do this now. https://extension.umd.edu/hgic/topics/soil-testing

Marian