Combating weeds and pests for Bermuda Grass

Combating Weeds in Bermuda Grass

Lawns that incur weed invasions are usually lawns that are lacking something somewhere along the lawn care train.  Weeds are opportunistic and will present themselves in lawns with poor fertility, drainage problems, nutrient deficits, compact soil, or any number of other lawn care issues.  Oftentimes, herbicidal remedies are the best way out of the weeds.

If you decide it's time to combat invasive weeds with herbicides, be smart about it.  Use quality pre-emergent and post-emergent products as part of a complete plan for weed eradication.

With pre-emergent herbicides, the key is to plan ahead.  Do some research and ask some questions to be sure you apply the product early enough to prevent the weed seeds from germinating.  By stopping the weeds before they germinate, you'll eliminate most of the need for herbicidal application during the hottest months of the year.  This is a good thing as applying these chemicals in intense heat can wind up doing more harm than good to your desirable vegetation.

The more common weed infestations that occur in lawns with Bermuda grass are quackgrass and crabgrass.  These narrow-leafed weed grasses are difficult to control because they spread their roots underground.  Their respective growth habits make them very difficult to treat once they have emerged from the soil.  

So, while it's always good to have a strong and effective post-emergent herbicide at the ready for the occasional lone weed that pops up from time to time, beating these opportunistic plants to the punch and killing them before they have a chance to sprout is your best bet.  Proper lawn care methods and regular preventative maintenance are always the right answer too.

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Lawn Diseases and Pests in Bermuda Grass

Diseases can be absolutely devastating to your lawns if they are able to spread beyond the point of containment and repair.  For Bermuda grass, the most common illnesses come in the fungal variety.  

Fungal infections like dollar spot, spring dead spot, and large patch fungus can be founand d in Bermuda grass lawns that are poorly drained and retain excess moisture and lawns with compacted soil and poor nutrient circulation.

Another disease is called root rot and generally occurs in compact soil or soils that are naturally dense like clay.  Also called Bermuda decline, root rot damages the roots and leads to sparse and weakened growth.

Spring dead spot begins as small circular patches on your lawn that begin to spread out and grow larger if left unaddressed.  This fungal infection is usually caused by using large amounts of nitrogen during fertilization practices.

Diseases and other infections can be treated with fungicides and other products that can combat common lawn ailments.  These problems are easier to diagnose and treat if caught early on.  So it's important to remain vigilant and to pay attention to what your lawn is trying to tell you.

Bermuda grass plays host to an eclectic cast of wildlife that enjoys roaming through its green expanse.  Grasshoppers, crickets, ticks, and crickets are but a few of the creatures you'll find.  Those aren't the pests that should worry you.

The invasive pests that can cause real damage to your Bermuda grass lawn are:

● White Grubs

● Japanese Beetles

● Sod Webworms

The white grubs and the Japanese beetles are one and the same at different stages of life.  The grubs are merely Japanese beetle larvae.  In the larval stage, a large infestation of these grubs can decimate the roots of your desired grass plants.  Fully grown, the Japanese beetle has been known to gorge itself on the surrounding vegetation.  However, the preferred vegetation is the leaves of trees and usually not grass blades.

While sod webworms prefer cool-season grasses, a meal is a meal.  Once these pests (which are the larvae of the harmless brown moth) begin chomping on your healthy grass plants brown spots begin to appear and will grow larger and larger until the nuisance sprouts its wings.

In today's world, there are insecticides designed specifically to kill each of these unwanted pests.  So ask your local garden professional for the right product or do a keyword search on Amazon.  

The best advice for the pest problem is to keep your lawn so healthy with rich, dense growth that opportunistic and invasive species don't have an opportunity to invade.