February's Lawn Tips Live video was filmed at Super-Sod of Gwinnett, Georgia (in Lawrenceville). Join sod experts Scott McElyea and Pamela McElyea as they discuss how to care for your warm and cool season grasses. Toward the end Super-Sod's Marketing Director, Hillary Thompson, shares her knowledge about February's featured weed.
Scroll to the bottom to find February's featured weed or click here to jump there.
Forsythia is the Signal!Forsythia signals it's time to apply pre-emergent herbicide because the soil is the right temperature.
What's a Forsythia? It's that bush with yellow flowers that typically flowers in the middle of February.
The rule of thumb is to apply spring pre-emergent herbicide when Forsythia starts blooming. In a typical year, if you don't have a Forsythia bush to signal you, apply pre-emergent between February 15th and March 1st to kill weeds before you even see them. Any later than that window and it's too late to kill weeds with a pre-emergent herbicide (you'll have to switch to a post-emergent to apply directly to the weeds).
Does that sound like a lot to keep track of? Never mind that!
Purchase a Lawn Coach subscription today and we'll mail you the pre-emergent herbicide you need to prevent weed seeds from germinating and causing an infestation this spring and summer.
It's Tall Fescue's Time to ShineTall Fescue is a cool season lawn that takes center stage in winter when it shines bright green, while other lawns and plants are dormant.
- It's still a great time to lay Tall Fescue sod. Get instant impact with Elite Tall Fescue sod, available as a single roll or in full pallets. You can order sod online.
- Overseeding Tall Fescue - This window has closed. To successfully seed Tall Fescue, either rewind the clock to September or wait until next autumn to seed at the right time.
- Mowing Tall Fescue Seedlings: The first time to mow your lawn (at a 2.5-3" cut height) is when the seedlings reach 3-4" tall. In fact, mowing will promote growth! So don't be timid. Mow it!
- Winter is the time to lower the mower blade for your established Tall Fescue lawn. Continue to mow as needed throughout the winter at a 2.5-3" cut height. In summer we'll remind you to raise it up again.
- Stop in to pick up 16-4-8 fertilizer for Elite Tall Fescue lawns through the cool growing season. Check out our Lawn Coach subscriptions for Tall Fescue products.
- Along with fertilization, you may need to apply a fast-acting lime that neutralizes the pH of your soil. Always take a soil test to confirm if you need to apply lime or fertilizer. Balanced soil pH is critical for your grass to be able to use the nutrients supplied by your fertilizer.
Warm Season LawnsNot much going on in this department since your Bermuda, Zoysia, and Centipede lawns are still dormant.
- Whatever you do, don't apply nitrogen this time of year when your warm season lawn is dormant. It's time to rest. Avoid "weed and feed" and "winterizer" product marketing - these products usually contain nitrogen and nitrogen will push growth during a time that can cause damage to your lawn.
- Likewise, hold off aerating warm season lawns until they fully green up in the spring.
- Mow your weeds. If you didn't apply pre-emergent in September to stop the weeds you're seeing now, mow those weeds down. Or, turn on your Automower robotic mower to do the mowing/weeding for you.
Forsythia is the signal for applying pre-emergent herbicide. Come by for products or check out our Lawn Coach subscription.
- POST-Emergent herbicide on NEW Tall Fescue: If you planted a brand new Fescue lawn from seed and in the process tilled up existing soil, you've probably kicked up weed seeds and exposed them to the light. As a result, the seeds are probably now germinating alongside your Fescue seedlings.
👍 Rule of thumb: It's okay to apply a post-emergent herbicide labeled for Tall Fescue lawns after you've mowed your lawn 3 to 4 times. Come by for products or check out our new Lawn Coach subscriptions.
- Mowing works well for suppressing weeds you see now.Mow to break the weed life cycle. Mowing cuts off flower/seed heads and that stops weed seeds from making more weeds. Get yourself on a weekly mowing routine and don't let the weeds get ahead of you. Better yet, a robotic lawn mower will quietly and constantly mow for you and keep the despised weeds from going to seed - It's a clean and green, weed-stopping machine!
- Mulch is a time-tested trick for suppressing weeds in flower beds. Spread bark or pine straw 2-4" thick and keep it 1-2" away from touching the trunks or stems of your plants. Rake/blow leaves off your lawn and into your beds and natural areas rather than bagging them.
- Hand Weeding - Plop yourself down on the ground and pull up some weeds. You'll feel the calming earth through your fingertips and get Vitamin D through your skin.
LAWN TIPS LIVE
Love reading these tips as much as we love writing them? Then join us online this Thursday at 1 PM when the Lawn Tips will go live from our Lawrenceville, Georgia store.
Click this blue button to watch Lawn Tips Live on Facebook and you'll get a Facebook alert when we go live.
Some folks said they're not on Facebook, so this month we're going live on Facebook and YouTube simultaneously! It will be the same livestream, but a different link, so click this red button to get to our YouTube event.
A New Series on Weeds
a.k.a. common chickweed
While you're reading this, common chickweed is probably out there forming large mats of foliage in your flower beds and in bare spots in your lawn.
- Round leaves without fuzz (there may be some fuzz on the stems)
- Tiny, tiny white flowers that you may not even notice
- Grows in a clump from one center point, with branches radiating out all around to form round mats
See more pictures on the NCSU Extension webpage for common chickweed
You'll also see mouse-ear chickweed around too. It's similar in habit, but its leaves are fuzzy, while common chickweed's are smooth.
Interestingly, common chickweed is one of those edible weeds. Google it and look in foraging books and you'll find many recipes that use it as a "greens" replacement. My sister even fed chickweed to her pet rabbits as a treat.
Chickweeds are fast growing and there's probably a lot of this in your garden already. If you choose not to preserve it as an edible salad green, then there are three paths for eradication:
- In September spread pre-emergent herbicide to prevent germination of winter weeds, such as chickweed.
- Hand pull chickweed - the roots are spindly and it's ridiculously easy to pull up a lot at once. Put it on your compost pile - it decomposes quickly.
- It is easy to kill with post-emergent herbicide for broadleaf weeds.