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Lawn Care Blog

The Weed That’s Not a Weed: Yellow Nutsedge

NutsedgeOften this time of year, lawn care companies, including Weed Pro, are contacted about a pesky nuisance in your lawn that is often confused for a weed.  The trespasser in question: Yellow Nutsedge.

Not a Weed

Yellow nutsedge is unique because it isn’t considered a broad leaf (ie dandelion) or a grass (ie crabgrass), but instead it is a sedge.  Sedges are different from grasses and broadleaf weeds on a few fronts.  Sedges may look like a grass at first but if you look close it actually has a triangular stem.  This is a unique identification characteristic.  Nutsedge is also a vibrant lime-yellow color, drawing away from the deep green of your yard.

Where Nutsedge Grows

One of the general rules about nutsedge is that it grows in moist or wet areas.  Often it’s seen in ditches and low-lying areas.  If you have areas of nutsedge in your lawn, you may consider improving drainage conditions.

Nutsedge Spreads

The plant also can reproduce a couple of ways.  The plant will set seeds like normal plants, but it also produces underground tubers, or nutlet (like a potato except smaller) that can break off from the mother plant and reproduce.  These nutlets are to blame for the difficult control.

How to Get Rid of Nutsedge

Because nutsedge isn’t a broadleaf weed or a grass, our typical weed control products don’t even come close to controlling the weed. Yellow nutsedge often grows very fast, creating a difficult situation for movement of the herbicides.  A specific chemistry is needed that needs to be applied by a licensed lawn care professional like Weed Pro.

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.