Q. Our lawn develops a
weed every summer that is broader in width and grows quickly and
higher than the grass. What is the best way to get rid of this weed?
- S.B., South Hadley
A. The weed you're
talking about is called nutsedge, and next to dandelion, is one of
the most common and prolific of lawn and garden weeds. I get many
questions from people frustrated by this obnoxious weed because it
grows much faster than the lawn. Shortly after you've mowed the lawn
you will see this grassy weed rising above the rest of the lawn.
I, too, have been frustrated by nutsedge in the lawn
and garden because conventional controls don't work on this native
weed. In controlling nutsedge it helps to understand how it grows and
then you'll know why pulling it up by hand doesn't work and why
conventional lawn treatments you put down with a spreader or spray on
the lawn don't work, either.
Nutsedge has a very deep root system and on the tips
of its roots there are small "nuts," hence the name
nutsedge or nutgrass. These underground nuts can be several feet down
and when you go to pull up the plant many nuts are left behind which
will sprout new nutsedge plants.
The reason all of the bags or sprays of conventional
lawn treatments don't work is because they are all designed to work
on broad-leaved weeds and since nutsedge is a narrow-leaved weed it
won't control it.
The best way I have to get rid of difficult lawn and
garden weeds like nutsedge is to spot spray Herbicidal
Soap Spray on the weeds which will kill their roots, nuts,
and all and then spread organic lawn weed and feed which will prevent
future weeds. I recommend doing these two treatments each year twice
a year - now and in spring.
Click here to read
more about Herbicidal Soap Spray and order it from Pernell Gerver's