Many of you may not be thinking about fall or winter when we are still seeing temperatures reach the nineties and can even reach the hundreds before we will see our first frost but now is the time to start thinking about those winter weeds that show up in your home lawns each year. September is actually the ideal time to treat for those annual weeds. One of those weeds is henbit, that purplish flowering weed that blooms in early spring.
Control of these winter weeds can be accomplished by using a pre-emergent herbicide. In this area we can usually treat our lawns in late September or October and get some control. Depending on the amount of moisture that we receive it can be very important that you get your pre-emergent herbicides out to have the best effect. If you are looking for a natural or organic products there are some available that use a corn gluten meal base. It is very important to remember that pre-emergent herbicides only work on small seeded annual broadleaf weeds.
The majority of pre-emergent products are sold as granules. They can be applied with a push type fertilizer spreader or a hand grass seeder depending on the amount of product to be applied. To ensure that you have even distribution over your lawn divide the amount to be applied in half. Spread half on the product moving east to west across remaining half can be applied moving north to south. Always read and follow herbicide label carefully when using any herbicide product.
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service in Erath County and the Turfgrass Management Program at Tarleton State University are in the process of finalizing a Fall Turf Field Day to be held at the Tarleton State University Turfgrass Field Lab in October. During this program we will discuss pre-emergent application and weed control as well as many other management strategies for turfgrass that need to be implemented in the Fall.
Whit Weems is an Erath County extension agent. His column appears weekly and online at yourststephenvilletx.com.