Weeds in Lawns

Best ways of preventing weeds in lawns

Growing a healthy and thick lawn can easily keep the weeds away from your lawn. The best way to avoid them is to maintain a healthy lawn and take other prevention steps to keep them away from growing. Weeds affect the growth of grass and plants on the lawns and make them look ugly. Thus the only solution is to prevent the weeds from growing on your lawns. 

Enjoy a beautifully manicured lawn with our timely yard work services that care for your yard according to the season. Call us today!

The common weeds include crabgrass patches, clumps, and dandelions, which appear from nowhere and emerge as a headache to homeowners everywhere. Preventing weeds is a constant fight as you can find them returning to your lawns. However, it is possible to keep them under control by suffocating the growth of new weeds on your lawn.

What are the best ways of preventing weeds?

Listed below are several ways of preventing weeds. Let’s see each method in detail: 

1. Fertilize your lawn without going overboard 

To keep the lawn healthy, you should fertilize it properly. Too little fertilizer can sparse the lawn, while too much fertilization can nourish certain weeds like Bermuda grass, crabgrass and annual bluegrass. You have to strike a balance with the help of following the application rates as seen on the package. Using a good quality fertilizer having a higher control release of nitrogen can help you fix this problem. You can use urea form, IBDU or sulfur-coated urea for steady and slow nutrient supply. 

The fertilizing efforts’ timing and frequency prove vital to healthy lawns. These can vary as per the lawn length, type and the growing season. The northern yards usually demand two annual applications of fertilizer. However, the southern lawns would demand three feedings (early to mid-spring to early summer). 

2. Water grass deeply but infrequently 

The next weed prevention method is to water the grass deeply but at irregular intervals. Adding frequent and light watering to your lawn can help grow some shallow roots-based weeds. These include annual bluegrass, chickweed, crabgrass, and sedges, to name a few. These quickly germinate with light and frequent watering. All these weeds require less water or dry conditions to thrive. 

Instead, you can reduce the time interval and increase the time for watering your lawn. It will help get water deeper into your yard defying all these dry condition friendly weeds. The lawns require one inch of water in a week; hence you have to adjust the timing and frequency accordingly in your yard. You can set up an empty tuna on your land that can help find out when you can apply one inch of water.

3. Smother weeds with mulch

If the weeds are left unattended, they will quickly fill all over the lawn in the unplanted places in your yard. One of the best ways to prevent weeds is having mulch on your lawns. When we install mulch, it spreads over the soil surface, blocking the lawn’s sunlight. Most of the weeds in the yard are annual weeds, which need sufficient sunlight to sustain them. Adding mulch reduces their growth. 

The remaining weeds that have managed to germinate are easy to pull since the soil beneath mulch remains moist and loose. The coarse chipped or shredded bark is a decent choice for large areas between shrubs and trees. The reasons are obvious: it slowly decomposes and does not get blown away. For paths, you need a thick sawdust base layer that can help add good weed suppression as it damages the nitrogen supply in the soil.

4. Mow higher 

Mowing with less height can make your turf weak. It reduces the capability of grass leaves to produce good nutrients. Also, it allows the light to enter the soil surface that helps weeds like goosegrass and crabgrass grow. Their seeds quickly grow and sprout. 

Mowing higher is the only solution as it can prevent the light from entering the grass, thus preventing the weed seeds’ growth. So keep the higher-level settings between 2 to 4 inches when you plan to mow your lawn. You can also check with your local extension service and proceed with their recommendations. 

5. Apply pre-emergence herbicides

Pre-emergence herbicides with rich oryzalin, trifluralin or nontoxic corn gluten content kill weeds. When ready to germinate, they target the weed seed and thus cannot give away established weeds. To make pre-emergence herbicide effective, you should apply it over the weeds. At the same time, you need to water these herbicides as found in the soil. Check its label to find out how much quantity is safe to use.  

If you want to stop the growth of the weeds permanently, consider the chemical-based option. The pre-emergent herbicides deal with many weeds found in their different weed families. Apply it before you find the weed seeds starting to germinate. The seeds start germinating during the early spring. The water-based applications help draw the herbicide with the seed level with good results.

6. Pulling the weeds 

You can choose to eliminate weeds with your hand or use gardening tools whenever you notice them. Using your hands to pull the weeds is tough but also the best. Make sure you remove the entire weed plant to make this method effective, as the weed plants can quickly grow. All you have to do is pull the stem and remove the plant from the soil. 

However, weeds like dandelions have deeper roots, which will demand extra effort to remove them. Take a hoe to dig the soil in it and then lose the soil, allowing you to get a good grasp of the stem and then pull. You have to dig deeper and pull several times until you get the entire root in your hand. 

You can also use special tools like a winged weeder to remove the weeds. Check more on the best tools to remove weeds on your lawn

Types of weeds 

Weeds are divided into three different categories, grassy, broadleaf and grass-like. Let’s have a look:

  • Broadleaf weed – These weeds have broad and flat leaves that are not needle or grassy. Some of the common broadleaf weeds include Dandelion, oxalis, ground ivy (creeping Charlie), clover, dollarweed, thistle, plantain, and herbit, to name a few. 
  • Grassy weed – These weeds resemble in different ways in terms of looks and growth. They grow one leaf at a time. We can find leaves appearing like grass blades. Examples of this category include foxtail, quackgrass, crabgrass and annual bluegrass. 
  • Grass-like weed – The weed appears grass type, while it leaves areas like tube-like or triangular and hollow shapes. Moreover, these are not flat, unlike the grass blade. Some examples of grass-like weeds include wild garlic, wild onion and nutsedge. 

Why is preventing weed important? 

Listed below are several reasons for preventing the unwanted plants and shrubs categorized as weeds. 

  • Having weeds on a lawn is an ugly sight – The presence of weeds in any place on your lawn can add an unsightly look.
  • Time-consuming to fix – Once weeds are established, it can be time-consuming, and you must seek the help of a professional to eliminate them from your lawns. You can also find several DIY options to eliminate them, including applying weed killers or pulling them with your hand. 
  • Weeds suffocate grass and plants on your lawn – If you leave the weeds unattended, they are likely to invade your lawn. Weeds squeeze all the nutrients in the soil to sustain, thus allowing the grass and plants in lawns to die. 
  • Preventing weeds saves the cost – If you leave weeds untreated, they can spread fast on your lawn, giving a poor look. You then have to seek the help of a professional lawn care service provider, which can increase the cost. 
  • Good weed prevention gives long-lasting impact – The consistent weed prevention task can help eliminate the stubborn weeds and make your lawn weed-resistant. 

In conclusion, maintaining a healthy lawn is the best way to avoid weeds. We have discussed a few practical solutions above for preventing weeds that you can try on your lawn. 

However, it is always good to call a professional lawn care service provider like Eden if you are stuck. You get a healthy lawn free from weeds making yourself a proud owner of a beautiful lawn. 

Enjoy a beautifully manicured lawn with our timely yard work services that care for your yard according to the season. Call us today!

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