another crabgrass question

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Old 07-31-20, 12:05 PM
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another crabgrass question

Wondering what is the best way to approach this issue.

I seeded a large bare spot where a pile of soil had been for a few years. Used a big box northern mix with annual and perennial seed; also spread starter fertilizer. Grass did come in, but also a LOT of crabgrass. When I pull the crabgrass now, some of the grass comes with it, so I don't want to do this.

I'm wondering if the dead crabgrass will rake out in late autumn or in the spring, or if I will need to pull each dead sprig by hand. Doing nothing about it makes no sense to me, since I want to clear the soil so I can add more seed and starter fertilizer when the time is right. Hopefully that will be late autumn. This is a lawn in Minnesota.



 
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Old 07-31-20, 05:17 PM
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Crabgrass dies and has to renew from seed each year so the best process is a pre-emergent herbicide in the spring.
 
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Old 07-31-20, 11:30 PM
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I uses a spray bottle with grass killer to hit individual clumps, the surrounding grass will fill in after a few weeks!
 
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Old 08-01-20, 05:38 AM
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This time of year I would be using a herbicide that contains quinclorac. It's a herbicide that kills living crabgrass but does not hurt many desired turfgrasses. You do need to know what kind of grass you have because it cannot be used on a lawn of: St. Augustine, Centipede, Bahiagrass, Bentgrass or Dichondra, Fine fescue. Then in early spring apply a premergent crabgrass control.
 
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Old 08-02-20, 07:19 AM
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This is helpful. I'm wondering at what point the crabgrass roots are no longer gripping the soil so you could pull it without uprooting the surrounding grass plants so much. This seed is 50.53% Perennial Ryegrass, 14.33% Creeping Red Fescue, 21.54% Kentucky Bluegrass, 9.7% Annual Ryegrass. I'm pretty disappointed at the growth of these seeds. The photo is representative of how this seed took.
 
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Old 08-02-20, 07:28 AM
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Just normal seed, as noted it's an annual and any seeded lawn takes a few years to get into shape.

Dont loose any sleep, just take the steps to eliminate!
 
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Old 08-02-20, 09:28 AM
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"...at what point the crabgrass roots are no longer gripping the soil so you could pull it without uprooting the surrounding grass plants so much."
Forget about it. It is extremely difficult to control crabgrass by pulling. The roots are extensive and you'll likely only get the top growth and leave enough root for it to grow back. You really need to get crabgrass under control before any new planting. Then you have to be continually vigilant to keep it under control.
 
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Old 08-02-20, 07:36 PM
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I had a pretty nasty crabgrass infestation a couple years ago. I did basically what PD suggested. Hit it at the end of summer with a product containing quinclorac. Once the crabgrass was dead, I pulled it. I filled the divots and reseeded in the fall, and then put down pre-emergent herbicide in the spring. I think the key is using both the quinclorac to kill the existing plant, and the pre-emergent to prevent new growth.

Remember that crabgrass has seeds, and you'll probably wind up dropping those seeds just in the process of pulling it. (Or mowing it, or walking on it). So you have to stop the spring germination of the seeds, which drop in the summer and fall.
 
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