They’re coming – weeds! Due to our relatively warm Winter and recent rains, weeds are sprouting earlier than usual. Control them now before they get out of hand – here’s how.
Weeds in Lawns
Start simple instead of going directly to battle mode. If your lawn is stressed, think about using a good organic like Nature’s Blend compost to give the grass a boost before doing any weed control. Healthy grass will prevent weeds on its own and using chemicals can have negative effects on the quality of the underlying soil.
If you have a chronic weed issue and need to use a chemical, right now (late Jan/early Feb) is your last chance to use a pre-emergent weed control. We recommend spreading Bonide Weed & Crabgrass Preventer. If you’re already seeing some weeds, you can spread Weed Beater Complete which kills existing weeds and helps stop new ones from sprouting.
Once its consistently warmer and sunnier, you can use hose-end Weed b Gon Spray to spray your entire lawn for weeds. Be sure to check the forecast to see if we are sunny for 4-5 days with no rain and don’t water or run your irrigation system before you spray.
Wait for the right time to fertilize. Grass has just started to come out of Winter dormancy, and as we continue to get warmer, it will grow quicker. Once your lawn is growing and you’re mowing about once every 1-2 weeks, you know it’s time to fertilize – wait until then! If you fertilize too early, your grass doesn’t get the full benefit.
Weeds in Garden and Landscape Beds
Controlling weeds in beds is simple if you keep up with it. Most weeds are smothered by keeping a good layer of mulch (2-3”) in your beds. Mulch also helps retain moisture and adds organic material to the soil as it breaks down. If you see a large weed – don’t spray, just pull it! Patrolling your garden beds and pulling weeds is therapeutic and great exercise. Be sure to get the root.
If you need to spray for weeds, use horticultural 20% vinegar or the new organic Ortho GroundClear. Both are very effective against small weeds before they spread, which means you should inspect and apply frequently (weekly). You can also use these to spot-treat for weeds in your lawn. Spray directly on the weed, wait a few hours, then pull up the dead weed – nice and easy.