Pre-emergent Weed Control

With all the recent rains and soon to be warmer weather, the smell or springtime is upon us! With this comes those pesky lawn weeds we all love to hate unless you are a toddler who like those purple henbit flowers!

Pre-emergent herbicides control weeds by forming a barrier that prevents the seed from germinating.

Now is the time to get pre-emergent herbicides out for those problematic warm-season weeds.  Maintaining a healthy lawn by proper fertilizing, watering and mowing is your first line of defense in controlling weeds. However, if your lawn is like mine and because of neglect or weather-related reasons, you might need another level of weed control.

Identify the type of weed you need to control.  Crabgrass, goosegrass and sandbur are annuals that emerge from seeds during the spring. These grassy weeds can be controlled with pre-emergent herbicides applied in late winter.

Dallisgrass is another weed that causes problems in lawns during the summer; it’s a perennial that recovers from rhizomes in the spring, but also produces seeds that spread throughout the lawn. Dallisgrass can be controlled by spot-treating the plants with a contact herbicide.

Those weeds you already see popping up – dandelion, chickweed, henbit, clover, dock and mustard can be controlled with selective post-emergent herbicides applied in the spring. These weeds can also be controlled by applying a pre-emergent herbicide in the early fall (September). Remember weed control is not a one-time process repeat applications may be necessary with both pre-emergent and post-emergent herbicides. Always read and follow the label recommendations, as the label is the law.

For more information contact Chelsea Dorward at the Bosque County Extension Office at or 254-435-2331.

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