Sedge weed burrs. Courtesy of Flickr user born1945.
This is the fifth of 11 Tricks to Make Sure Your Grass Is Always Greener, a free eBook. We’ll be posting a new trick on this blog every other week.
If you see a rapidly spreading, aggressive weed that has spiky burrs at the top of its stem, you could be looking at a sedge weed. Other clues to look for: triangular stems and groups of three leaves.
Like grassy weeds, sedge weeds also resemble grass. You can spot the difference, though, because they grow faster than neighboring areas of regular grass. They will be higher than the rest of the lawn, sometimes by a few inches.
Once established, these weeds are difficult to control. Some species of sedge grass can easily survive mowing, so herbicide application is the only method of elimination. Sedges love to plant themselves in moist, wet soil. Golf courses are especially susceptible to sedge. Summer rainfall also helps these weeds thrive. If you are over-watering your lawn or have a drainage problem which is leaving your lawn moist, be sure to correct these issues before trying to permanently eliminate sedge weeds.
Fortunately, there are new products available to kill sedge weeds more effectively. Use a product that is labeled specifically for sedge and follow the instructions carefully. The timing and application of the product is critical to its success.
Another weed elimination technique is to examine your surrounding areas. Often, a ditch or wetter area choked with weeds may be the source of your problems. You may need to extend your weed management to include these rough areas before your own lawn will begin to recover.