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Crabgrass Prevention

crabgrass preventionOne of our most frequent questions in July and August is, what to do about Crabgrass?  The great thing is, crabgrass prevention is fairly easy if you address it directly.

Here’s what you need to know about crabgrass:

Crabgrass is an annual plant, so it will all die after the first frost and, if it’s addressed correctly, you can prevent germination of new seeds before next year. It likes lots of sun and dryer soil, so you’ll see more of it at the end of the summer. It also needs lots of room for its roots to grow.

So for crabgrass prevention, we recommend to cut high (meaning, leave your grass longer) during your lawn mowing service so the taller grass blocks some of the sun from the crabgrass, and water infrequently, but deeply, this time of year. By water deeply, we mean water the lawn for a long period of time, so that the water can be absorbed deep into the soil – which is great for the grass and not so great for the crabgrass. The goal is to have the grass out-grow the crabgrass.

And in order for the grass to out-grow the crabgrass, you need to grow more grass!  To grow more grass, we recommend overseeding in the fall and again in the spring. Then, if the lawn is saturated deeply every 7-10 days, the grass roots will be deep enough that the grass will create a hostile environment for the crabgrass – perfect for crabgrass prevention. You can also start an organic fertilization program to help the grass grow thicker and faster.

So if you want to get rid of your crabgrass, here are your crabgrass prevention steps:
1. Schedule overseeding for this fall, and maybe even a pre-winter fertilizer application.
2. Schedule your seeding in the spring for after your spring clean up, and think about getting on an organic fertilization program for next year. It’s really affordable, considering it’s organic!
3. If you’re watering your lawn every day, but for short intervals, stop! Water once a week for a longer period of time.
4. Raise your mowing deck so that you leave the grass longer each week.