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Preemergence herbicides for the home lawn

Staff Writer
Brownwood Bulletin
Scott Anderson

PREEMERGENCE HERBICIDES FOR THE HOME LAWN

WHAT ARE PREEMERGENCE HERBICIDES?

A preemergence herbicide is an herbicide that is designed to control weeds by interfering with seedling germination and emergence. Conversely, postemergence herbicides will control established weeds that have already germinated and emerged.

HOW DO THEY WORK?

Different preemergence herbicides may have different sites of action or manners in which they work. These products inhibit cell division, resulting in seedlings that are stunted, deformed, and unable to emerge as healthy plants.

WHAT ARE THE POTENTIAL BENEFITS OF USING A PREEMERGENCE HERBICIDE?

• These herbicides provide protection during critical seasons when turfgrass may be less able to compete with weeds (spring and fall).

• Preemergence herbicides are generally the most effective chemical option for controlling challenging annual weeds like crabgrass (Digitaria spp.) and annual bluegrass

(Poa annua L.).

WHAT OTHER FACTORS SHOULD I CONSIDER BEFORE PURCHASING AND USING AND PREEMERGENCE HERBICIDE?

• Preemergence herbicides can injure newly established or over seeded turfgrass lawns. Follow label recommendations and consult your AgriLife County Extension Agent when in doubt.

• Weed and feed products used for other purposes in the landscape may already contain preemergence herbicides.

• Application of separate preemergence herbicides in addition to these products may lead to over-application that can be harmful to your lawn.

• Avoid using and feed products.

WHEN DO I APPLY MY PREEMERGENCE HERBICIDE?

For best results, we recommend that you make two preeemergence herbicide applications each year: one in the spring to target summer annual weeds and one in the fall to target winter annual weeds. Preemergence herbicides will often be the most effective when applied based on soil temperature, because soil temperatures play a critical role in weed seed germination. Per the recommendations above, apply your spring preemergence herbicide when soil temperatures reach approximately 55°F for several days.

MONITORING SOIL TEMPERATURE

You can monitor soil temperature yourself using a soil thermometer or even a household meat thermometer. Measure the soil temperature for the uppermost 1" of soil, where most weed seeds will be concentrated.

Check out aggieturf.tamu.edu/turfgrass-weeds/ for assistance with weed identification.

PRIVATE PESTICIDE APPLICATOR TRAINING SEPT. 17 IN BROWNWOOD

The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service in Brown County will conduct a private applicator training on Thursday, September 17th in Brownwood.

The training will be at the Brown County Extension Office 605 Fisk Avenue. The training will be limited to 10 participants. Anyone interested in attending this training should contact the Brown County Extension Office at 325-646-0386 and pre-register. The first 10 participants to pre-register will be accepted for the September 17th training.

The training is specifically for those seeking a Texas Department of Agriculture private applicator license and is not a continuing education unit training.

The license is required to buy and apply restricted use/state limited use pesticides.

The Texas Department of Ag requires this training prior to being tested for a private application pesticide license.

Individual registration is $50 due upon arrival.

The training on September 17th will begin at 8:30am with registration and end at noon.

Again, it will be limited to just 10 applicants that pre-register.