So you’re in North Florida and your lawn should always be looking in tip-top shape. You’ve followed basic Jacksonville lawn care techniques, and things seem to be going well. But then some pesky grass weeds come in and throw off your lawn’s look! Just so you know, here are the five most common weeds you should be watching out for … AND ways to treat them.
There are five species of crabgrass that are common in Florida: India, blanket, southern, tropical and smooth crabgrass. Leaf blades vary in size from 1 inch to over 2 inches long. Depending on the species, the blades and sheaths may be hairy or smooth. Crabgrass is generally considered a summer annual and germinates at soil temperatures of 50°F – 55°F or greater.
Pre-treatment: benefin, pendimethalin, prodiamine
Post-treatment: hand pull or use a non-selective herbicide (glyphosate)
Dollarweed is sometimes called Pennywort. It reproduces from seed, underground rhizomes and sometimes tubers. It has a bright, shiny, flat leaf that is round with scalloped edges. There are several species of dollarweed found in Florida. The petiole (leaf stalk) is attached to the bottom of the leaf toward the center, not on the edge. The flowers are shaped like umbrellas (umbels) and white in color. They are made-up of several 5-petaled small flowers.
Pre-treatment: atrazine, isoxaben
Post-treatment: atrazine, clopyralid, 2,4-D, dicamba+2,4-D (check the turf cultivar), imazaquin, metsulfuron
This creeping summer annual has parallel-veins and small purple flowers. The seeds are round capsules. The plant is fleshy and has fibrous roots.
Pre-treatment: atrazine, simazine
Post-treatment: atrazine, 2,4-D+dicamba (check turf cultivar), sulfosulfuron
4. Prostrate Spurge
Like all spurges, it has a milky sap when the stem is broken. The leaves are opposite, round and usually have a reddish spot on the upper leaf. The leaf is not symmetrical.
Pre-treatment: atrazine, isoxaben, simazine
Post-treatment: atrazine, carfentrazone, 2,4-D+dicamba (follow label directions to minimize turf injury), metsulfuron, simazine, sulfentrazone
5. Torpedo Grass
Torpedograss is a perennial that has sharply pointed spreading rhizomes that are white in color. The leaf blades are sparsely hairy on the top and have pointy tips. The stems can grow upwards of 4 or 5 feet if left unchecked. Seedheads may be present on more mature plants, although seeds do not germinate well in Florida and the plant mainly reproduces by the rhizome.
Post-treatment: atrazine, carfentrazone (limited control), handpull
Need help tending to your lawn? Visit our Jacksonville lawn care page for more info! In addition to Jacksonville, we also provide lawn care service in Orange Park, Ponte Vedra Beach, and Saint Augustine.