As the season moves forward, you may start to see some clumps of grass in your lawn that just doesn’t seem to match the rest of your yard. It grows a little bit faster, stays a little bit greener, and disrupts that beautiful look. That might be what we call Tall Fescue.
Tall Fescue vs. Kentucky Blue Grass
Tall Fescue is a variety of grass has been used in America for a LONG time. The plant is used heavily along road sides because of its low maintenance attributes and reliability. Sounds like a great choice for your lawn right? Wrong. The plant itself has a very course leaf, a strong clumping growth habit, and won’t create the lawn you are looking for.
While the benefits of fescue, such as drought tolerance and deep root systems seem beneficial, it often looks ugly in your lawn. Scientists work every year to develop better looking fescue, that has the virtues of the plant, without the ugliness.
Kentucky Blue Grass is often seen on professional sports fields and is a thin bladed grass. It gets it’s name because during it’s peak season, it often has a “blue” hue to it. This variety of grass is often what home owners are looking for when planting a lawn. However, while looking great in peak season, blue grass is very tempramental, often susceptible to disease and drought.
Control of Fescue in Your Lawn
Fescue is difficult to control because of the extensive root system. A deep root system means there is a lot of area for herbicides to move, in order to kill the plant. That deep root system also creates a challenge when trying to dig out the plant with a shovel.
If you only have a few clumps, look to spot treat with a product like Round up, or dig with a shovel. For lawns that have a lot of fescue, you might think about complete renovation this fall! Weed Pro, or your lawn care company, can help you determine which course of action is the best to take.
Author: Andrew Muntz received his Master’s of Science in Turfgrass science and his Bachelors of Science in Landscape Horticulture at The Ohio State University, Columbus OH.