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Weed Life Cycles - Treating for Winter Annuals, Summer Annuals & Perennial Weeds

By DoMyOwn staff

Weed life cycles play a huge role in their prevention and treatment. Make sure your lawn is protected by following these simple tips.

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Video Transcript

Hey everybody it's Heath from DoMyOwn.com.

Today we're going to talk to you about winter annual, summer annual, and perennial weeds. Winter annual weeds are weeds that germinate by seed. Usually they grow from fall through the winter time until early spring. They're usually dropping their seeds in the springtime to re-germinate in the fall.

Some examples of winter annual weeds are chickweed, dead nettle, henbit and poa annua. In order to prevent winter annual weeds from germinating, you'll need to apply a fall pre-emergent. Since most winter annual weeds germinate around the soil temperature of 70 degrees, another good way to determine when to do your pre-emergent application is doing a soil reading. With that, you want to make sure that you're applying that pre-emergent prior to the soil temperature reaching 70 degrees. Another important fact is to make sure that you're not applying the pre-emergent when the soil temperatures are above 85 degrees.

If you're not able to apply a fall pre-emergent because you're doing a renovation on your lawn you'll need to either A apply a post-emergent once that grass is mature or B wait until the warmer weather sets in to kill off those winter annual weeds.

Summer annual weeds are much like winter annual weeds and they will re-germinate in the springtime by seed. Some examples of summer annual weeds are crabgrass, goosegrass, chamberbitter, and spurge... and many others. You'll also need to apply a spring pre-emergent to prevent summer annuals from germinating. You'll need to apply your pre-emergent in early spring usually before your soil temperature reaches 50 to 55 degrees.

Perennial weeds are weeds that are going to last for two or more years. These are different from annual weeds where annual weeds will overseed themselves every year, they will continue to survive through winter or through summer and regenerate off of a root system. You need to make sure that you're using a selective herbicide that's going to translocate through to kill the rhizome as well as the plant itself. There are many different perennial weeds. To name a few are wild violets, dandelions, bermuda in fescue or even rye in bermuda. Another one is nutsedge. Nutsedge is something that will start growing from a seed but then quickly germinates and creates a rhizome to create new plants.

If you've applied your pre-emergents on time but you're still seeing weeds in the lawn, you'll need to apply a post-emergent to get control over those weeds. When applying a post-emergent application for perennial weeds or annual weeds, make sure that your lawn isn't stressed by disease, heat or drought, or make sure that it doesn't have mower damage from being mowed too short. In addition to mowing, make sure that you're not mowing three days prior to the application or three days after the application to make sure that you get the most benefits from your application.

If your lawn is completely covered with weeds, you'll need to do a blanket application for control. If you only have a few weeds here there you would do a spot application. If doing a liquid application, a spray indicator die can be a very important tool. This will help indicate where you've sprayed and where you haven't and may help you out when doing your applications.

Some products may require the use of a surfactant to get better control over those weeds.

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