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The Weed Battle on Your Lawn: How to Prevent and Destroy them

By Sadiya Anjum

It would be so wonderful if our lawns stayed lush green without any weeds. It takes some amount of regular work to keep your lawn weed-free. Weeds not only make your lawn look bad but they affect the growth of the grass by depriving them of nutrients. It is difficult to get rid of weeds entirely simply because weeds are resilient, but it is not an impossible task.

The best solution to a weed-free lawn is to keep your lawn healthy in the first place. Simple mistakes in your lawn-care techniques can welcome weeds. Do not mow your grass too short. Keeping it a decent length will make the lawn look abundant as well as prevent the weed from growing and spreading fast. Do not flood your yard. Keep your lawn moist and not flood it- extra water will encourage the growth of weeds. When you fertilize your yard, always make sure to fertilize at the right time of the year. Follow the instructions on the label carefully else you will be providing nutrients to weeds instead of grass. Taking extra good care of your grass and keeping it healthy is the simplest way to keep away weeds.

Even if you take good care of your lawn, the weeds may just crop up. To get rid of them, understand them: know your enemy before you plan an attack. The simple fact about weeds is that they are just plants that are unwanted in specific places. Weeds can be broadly classified into two types: grassy and broadleaf. Grassy weeds are basically grass-like plants or grass which is different from the one that is growing on your lawn (eg. crabgrass, foxtail). Broadleaf are easier to identify as they are mostly what you would imagine a weed to look like in a lawn (eg. yarrow, clover). Identifying the weed will help you tackle it better. 

Weeds can be eliminated with the help of chemicals. A pre-emergent control will prevent the growth of weeds. It will form a thin film over the soil preventing the germination of seeds of most weeds. Herbicides will help you get rid of weeds which have already popped up. Herbicides can either be selective or non-selective.

Selective herbicides will help get rid of weeds without damaging the grass but they may harm trees, shrubs and other plants. Therefore it is essential that instruction labels are read carefully and followed diligently. Selective herbicides are not to be used on windy days since wind will tend to carry this herbicide to your other plants. The soil should be moist before using this herbicide but there should be no rain forecast for the next 24 hours at least. Newly seeded areas should not be sprayed with herbicide at least till the grass has taken root and started to emerge. Non-selective herbicides are effective in killing almost all weeds, even those that may be unaffected by selective herbicides.

When using chemicals to get rid of weeds, make sure to read the instructions properly as it may have to be used in a specific season. Some chemicals will even kill your grass so you need to be absolutely sure of what you are using and how you are using it. Identify the type of weeds before you go shopping for chemicals.

If you take good care of your lawn, the healthy grass may not even allow the weeds to show up. But when you are trying to tackle weeds, make sure you are judicious with your procedures. You do not want to kill your lawn with your own hands.

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