Weed infestation after application of Berwyn Heigts community compost to grow grass

Asked April 10, 2020, 11:54 AM EDT

After applying this local compost, a weed infestation emerged before spring. It became clearer as the spring came in, that the compost was not heated properly. I have been pulling most of these weeds by hand, but they are so aggressive I can no longer keep up. I have planted the small Lilly's and encouraged the wild strawberries. With the v.mild past winter and late emergence of grass, I am truly overwhelmed, and the neighboring yards as well. Is there a grass seed or grass seed mixture that can more successfully crowd them out?

Prince George's County Maryland

1 Response

It sounds like the compost was applied to lawns, right? Grass did not green up particularly late this year. Most plants are 3-4 weeks ahead of usual growth. So perhaps the lawns were thin and had a lot of bare soil where weed seeds could get started?

Spring is not the ideal time to plant grass because of all the weed competition and slow seed germination. Late summer-early fall is the best time. Tall fescue for sun-part sun. Please read through our page on lawn overseeding and renovation: https://extension.umd.edu/hgic/topics/lawn-renovation-and-overseeding

Since we don't know what weeds you have, we can't give you much specific help. Can you attach photos of your specific weeds to a reply? Or just go to our weed webpage and look at the photos (which have control information for each one): https://extension.umd.edu/hgic/topics/lawn-weed-id-and-management

We are concerned about the "wild strawberries". There is an invasive plant known as Indian or Mock strawberry which is not actually a true strawberry, but looks just like one. (That's Indian as in India.) Take a look at this: https://extension.umd.edu/hgic/topics/indian-mock-strawberry If that's what you have, you'll want to get rid of it.

Ellen