Every lawn owner has to face a lot of problems during the preservation of a rich green lawn, and Digitaria/crabgrass is one of those problems. Crabgrass always finds empty, or bare spots of the lawn to grow and flourish. It also becomes a reason for weak and unhealthy grass that does not look appealing. This is where the crabgrass killer comes in.
In this post, you will surely find all you want to know to kill and avoid crabgrass from growing on your lawn.
Types of Crabgrass Killer
There are basically two types of crabgrass killers. It is important to understand the difference between them so that you can choose one depending on your lawn’s needs and requirements.
Before we start, let me tell you about the kinds of weeds in general:
There are three kinds of weed generally found- Annual ones, Biennial ones, and Perennial ones. Crabgrass is the most common annual weed found in lawns and they grow up during the summer season only when they find bare soil to settle on or gaps between grass plants.
To sum it up, there are two types of crabgrass killers: Pre-emergent herbicide that works before a weed starts growing from the soil, and post-emergent herbicide that works after weed starts growing.
Pre Emergent Crabgrass Killer:
Pre-emergent is the best option for killing crabgrass as they prevent weeds from germinating in important areas of your lawn like between the grass plants or garden beds. You must be careful about applying the pre-emergent herbicides, as they are mostly not selective and may also kill grass plants.
Post Emergent Crabgrass Killer:
If you have already seen the crabgrass growing on your lawn, then post-emergent is what you should go for. These will kill weeds that are already germinating in your garden areas.
How to Kill Crabgrass?
If you want to kill the crabgrass you should be familiar with the time and environment that support its growth. So, you will likely see crabgrass in your lawn if:
- You mow your lawn excessively or deeply.
- Your lawn has more bare, dried, or thin spots.
- There are lots of insects.
- Your lawn is drought-stricken.
- The weather conditions are extreme in your region.
After knowing the reasons for crabgrass’s appearance, let us move to the solutions to get rid of this dominant plant from your lawn.
1. Manual Pulling:
You can remove the crabgrass by using hands if it has grown in a smaller area of your lawn or the quantity is less. The good news is that there are some manual tools also that you can use to pull the unwanted grass or herbs.
Weed burner can be used to burn the weeds but be careful that you have safety supplies while using this tool. This way is proven effective if you are not in favor of using chemicals on your lawn.
Another tool is a claw weeder, which has a long pole and a claw at the edge that strongly grip and pull out the crabgrass from its roots. Not only crabgrass but it can also be used to pick out other weeds too.
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Killing crabgrass by using herbicides is a great and reliable way. The risk is that the chemical application on your lawn will also damage other good plants around. It is suggested by the experts to use Quinclorac-based herbicides for killing crabgrass.
Best Crabgrass Killers
We all know how annoying crabgrass can be. It’s the pesky weed that comes back no matter what you do to get rid of it. Luckily, there are many different types of killers for this problem. We’ll review some of the best crabgrass killers on the market and show you which one will work best for your lawn!
Scotts Halts – Best Crabgrass Killer
Scotts Halts Crabgrass and Grassy Weed Preventer are one of the top-performing crabgrass preventers on the market. Not only does this product kill existing weeds, but it prevents them from coming back for up to six months! Simply put down a pre-emergent or turf builder fertilizer in late winter/early spring when the soil is dry. Then, apply Scotts Halts Crabgrass and Grassy Weed Preventer in early summer when the crabgrass starts to sprout!
Southern Ag Atrazine
Southern Ag Atrazine Weed Killer doesn’t just target crabgrass – it also kills a variety of other weeds, including foxtails and nutsedge! This product is safe to use on your lawn without staining or damaging the grasses around it. Just apply Southern Ag Atrazine in early spring over the area where you want to kill crabgrass.
Bonide Crab Grass Killer
Bonide Crab Grass Control Plus Lawn Fertilizer is a great option if your lawn needs additional fertilizing! This product kills weeds and provides nutrients that help your grass grow stronger, allowing it to crowd out any pesky plants like crabgrass. Just put down Bonide Crab Grass Control in early spring when the soil is dry and start seeing results within a few weeks!
Ortho Weed Be Gon Plus Crabgrass Concentrate
Ortho Weed Be Gon Plus Crabgrass Concentrate is a dual-action formula that kills existing crabgrass and prevents it from coming back for up to three months. It also works on many other common weeds, including dandelions! Apply Ortho Weed Be Gone in late summer/early fall when the soil starts to cool down – this is when crabgrass germination typically occurs.
Application of the weed killer is important to ensure the maximum effectiveness for your lawn. For a safe and effective application, use a garden hose with an adjustable nozzle or an electric sprayer. If you are using a canister-type sprayer, pour the weed killer into the tank according to the instructions on its label (the amount of water will vary based on brand). Then pump up the pressure and spray the crabgrass killing solution. It is important to read all instructions for use on pesticide labels before applying any chemical weed control products.
The best time to apply weed killer is when the weeds are actively growing and the weather conditions will be dry for at least one day. You can apply weed killer any time between August and September.
3. Natural/Organic Crabgrass Killers:
Natural & organic treatments are considered safe as compared to chemical ones. The difference is that natural treatment works a bit slower than chemical treatments.
Baking soda is one of the fastest-acting among the natural ingredients used for killing crabgrass. Just wet the weeds and sprinkle the baking soda all over. Leave it for a few days and it will terminate all the unwanted plants.
Vinegar can also be used as an organic product to kill crabgrass. Mix 20-30% vinegar, dish soap, and salt together. Spray it all over the weeds and crabgrass that you don’t want to see again.
Corn gluten is considered a friendly weed killer because it also acts as a fertilizer for your yard due to the nitrogen content in it. It can be used on the lawn as a pre-emergent crabgrass killer but keep in mind that it will only control the production of crabgrass and other weeds by providing strength to the good lawn grass.
Hopefully, all the provided information will be useful for you in choosing the best crabgrass killer for your lawn successfully. Just pick the product that suits your needs and watch how all crabgrass disappear in just a few weeks.
James, the D.I.Y Expert, graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Horticulture from Colorado State University. Love writing blog posts and guides to help others learn how to garden!