A patchy appearance on your lawn, with a burnt look or a peppered pattern, is a good indication of unwanted grass type. Unless you identify the coarse grass culprits, the unwanted grass can take a large area of your lawn. Coarse grasses are hard to control and will ultimately spoil the appearance of your lawn.
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What is Coarse Grass?
Also known as weed grasses, coarse grass is any grass that is not your intended grass type on your lawn. It starts as small patches of different grass species, which is unnoticeable. Noticing and removing coarse grasses as soon as they appear is essential for a healthy lawn.
How to Identify Coarse Grass on Your Lawn
A simple lawn checkup is important to maintain a healthy lawn. Look out for these signs if you are not sure whether your lawn has coarse grass:
- Brown leaf sheaths, where the lawn looks like it’s burnt lightly.
- Peppered look due to flowering below the cut.
- Multicolored grass with a different texture on the lawn.
- Bright seed heads on the lawn is a likely indication of meadow grass manifestation.
Why Do Different Grass Types Appear on Your Lawn?
Check out a few possibilities why you are experiencing coarse grass on your lawn:
Birds, in most cases, spread the grass seeds. Once your grass suffers from excessive compaction or mowing, course grass is likely to grow.
In the cold season, grasses like bentgrass and fescues, which do well in warm seasons, tend to have stunted growth, paving the way for coarse grass to sprout.
Unsterilized top dressing soil may contain coarse grass seeds. Once applied and watered, the grass will sprout.
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How to Fix Lawn with Different Types of Grass
Homeowners have different approaches to fixing lawns with different grass. Some will get rid of the coarse grass, while others will allow it to spread even further. To find out the best ways to fix a lawn with different types of grass, continue reading.
A complete lawn renovation is recommended once you have a patchwork of bad grasses and weeds. The process might be costly but will result in a greener and more uniform lawn. However, for a complete lawn renovation, professional assistance is highly recommended due to lawn replacement and treatment.
A Simple Lawn Renovation Procedure:
Stage1: Get the right lawn professional. Once you deem your lawn patchwork irredeemable, it’s time to invite a professional for an entire lawn replacement. Search and get recommendations for the right company to work with and invite them to come and take a look.
Stage2: Eliminate the current lawn. The best time to have your lawn eliminated is in the late spring.
Stage3: New grasses are planted. The hottest months of the year may seem like the worst times to plant, but they are perfect timing for lawn renovation. August to September is the best time to do the renovation.
Stage4: Water the lawn. Continuous watering is essential, considering the lawn is put up in the hottest months. Water is important for lawn establishment.
Stage5: Let it grow. By the end of the hot season, the lawn is usually well established, and the glory of your backyard is returned. The professionals will, however, return and add more seed as a dormant seedling.
Stage6: Regular treatment. All your lawn requires now is regular treatment and instant removal of any course grass you spot.
Let it Be
Another way to deal with different grass types on the lawn is to let them be. More species of grass on your lawn are considered better. The lawn looks less uniform on a close-up look, but a large spatial look gives it a gradual shift in appearance. Different grass species in your yard provide a smooth transition between the cold and warm seasons of the year and a blend of sunnier and shadier grass spots.
Different species of grass on your lawn offer grass biodiversity. A transition from wet to dry seasons leads to a shift in balancing different species instead of having dead spots in the backyard. To make this method work best, establish the type of grass on your lawn and over-seed all types. Seeds are bought at local stores, or else you can let the lawn produce seed over time.
Spraying is an instant way to eliminate a certain type of grass on your lawn. Research and know the type of grass you have on your lawn, then apply a spray called ‘winter grass killer.’ The spray gets rid of vertical growing grass-like ryegrass and bluegrass. This means you only have lower horizontal grass left.
Lower grass like Bermuda, St. Augustine, and Kikuyu have different appearances. They may not give you your desired uniform lawn appearance. The vertical type, on the other hand, looks similar and can easily coexist. Therefore, the solution would be to remove all the lower grass and start afresh will a single type of grass.
Where you live may have a great impact on fixing the issue of different types of grass on your lawn. St. Augustine, for instance, does well in the South, so if you live there, water it continuously for a few weeks. The grass will thrive and dominate for the rest of the year. On the other hand, if you live in the North, this option might not work for you.
There are no dominant species in the North. Creeping bentgrass may seem to dominate, but once it develops patches of Kentucky bluegrass, it becomes difficult to separate. The solution on this side would be to decide the type you want to keep and get rid of the rest with RoundUp, then sod the grass you desire to have.
Essential Tips to Control Coarse Grass Manifestation on Your Lawn
There is no standalone solution to avoid different types of grass on your lawn; however, understanding the underlying cause would help control the situation. Here are a few tips to help boost your lawn’s appearance.
- In addition to regular watering and mowing, have a consistent watering plan. This establishes and thickens the current grass type leaving no room for course grass to sprout.
- Once you spot grass patches, remove them by hand.
- Once a patch becomes big and established, fork them out and add soil to level up, then reseed or lay patches of new turf.
- Slash the coarse grass using a knife or an edging tool that cuts to the root, removes the debris entirely, and then reseed. After the seed is established, the coarse grass is pressured out of the lawn completely.
- During the dry season, avoid frequent watering. Meadow grass which commonly grows as coarse amid your lawn has shallow roots and will be kept at bay.
There are no specific chemical control measures against unwanted types of grass on your lawn. Weed killers will kill your desirable grasses, so; only the cultural methods work when fixing coarse grass situations.
Identifying your Lawn Grass
Knowing your lawn grass is essential in meeting its growing requirements and applying DIY lawn treatment. Starting a lawn with new grass has easy grass identification compared to an existing lawn. It’s mainly a mere guess game. We have put up a few steps to help you narrow down the type of grass you are likely to have.
Your grass growing region.
The first clue to the grass type on your lawn is your location. Grasses have climatic limitations just like shrubs and flowers do. A certain type of grass must blend with the region to survive all seasons and remain healthy. In the US, for instance, the northern half grows cool-season grasses, which flourish in the cold weather in the North but dries out when subjected to the hot climate from the South.
On the other hand, the South grows warm-season grasses that peak during the summer and dry out during the winter.
Common cool-season lawn grasses
- Fine fescue. This type is the most shade-tolerant grass type. It’s best suited for yards with a dense shade. The grass includes spreading types and has an upright clumping growth.
- Kentucky bluegrass. This is considered the ideal lawn grass in the US Northern region. It’s the best for winter hardiness, fantastic self-repair capacity, and is vulnerable to stress damage.
- Perennial ryegrass. Ryegrass has a unique fast germination rate and establishment, thus best suited for both temporary and permanent lawns. It has good tolerance to cold and can withstand appropriate light shade.
Common warm-season lawn grasses
- Bahiagrass. Also known as highway grass, bahiagrass is an aggressive warm-season perennial grass. It has a mat-like forming habit and is light green. The grass is favored by drought and is ideal in soil erosion control.
- Bermudagrass. Bermuda grass is highly tolerant to heat. Its deep roots adapt it excellently to the dry seasons.
- Centipede grass. Centipede grass is preferred for its slow maintenance though its growth rate is very slow. The grass does well in sandy and acidic soils.
A frequent professional lawn inspection will reward you with a healthy lawn in the long run. You should be able to detect coarse grass before it becomes a catastrophe to your lawn. Identifying your lawn grass is easy once you understand the critical features of your location and the types of grass that thrive there. It is an essential step in attaining a sustainable lawn.