Weeds are usually the biggest problem homeowners encounter with their lawns other than proper maintenance and watering.
Weeds are really just one type of plant that it has been decided through years of experience, that it would be better if it wasn't included in a spread of what we call turfgrass.
Weeds usually are fast growers, and may have a limited life-cycle. Weeds will often use up limited resources; they may or may not have a deep root system and typically do not handle being trimmed compared to turfgrass.
Weeds fall into 3 categories based on their physiology:
We often get a question similar to this: if weeds are so prevalent, why don't we just grow them instead of grass? Usually, it's because a weed only grows during limited times during the growing season. For example, crabgrass doesn't start to appear in cool season areas until July and early August. If you opted to have a lawn made up of crabgrass, it would remain brown and lifeless from October to July.
Grassy weeds are usually annual weeds that develop from seeds created the previous year. Those seeds may have been blown in on the wind, carried in by animals or birds.
The seeds lie dormant during the winter months and then sprout in the spring with the soil temperature reaches 55 - 60 degrees. Once the seeds germinate, they grow quickly.
Grassy weeds include:
Controlling grassy weeds can be accomplished using pre-emergent herbicides that put down a layer that kills the grassy seeds as they first begin to germinate.
Grass-like weeds at first glance look like a grass, but are relatively easy to distinguish from grasses. Upon close inspection, the stems are triangular in shape.
Grassy-like weeds include:
Moss and fungi are not weeds in the normal sense of lawns. They don't grow from seeds but develop from spores that exist in our soil and when conditions are right, they develop and spread new spores. Moss is not a fungus but is a plant.
Fungi is not an animal nor a plant-- it is in its own classification. Unlike moss, fungi cannot produce food from photosynthesis and must absorb its nutrients from other plants. Fungi is almost everywhere. The yeast used to make bread is a fungi.
Broadleaf weeds are generally the easiest to identify of all the weeds. They have leaves that are broad, and are generally produced in pairs or multiples, have wide, flat leaves situated on a stem. Broadleaf weeds are distinctive from and are botanically not closely related to grasses and sedges.
Broadleaf weeds include:
Knowing the type of weed is important because it helps you identify what is the beed weed control.