Why is nutgrass so hard to get rid of?

Sometimes you feel like a nut…

Have you ever heard someone use a quote and wonder, “who said THAT?” When writing about nutgrass/nutsedge and why it’s so hard to get rid of, the need to search for quotes using the word “nut” was too much. And after researching the power of nutgrass or nutsedge, this quote just seemed to make sense. “Today’s mighty oak is just yesterday’s nut, that held its ground.” And here is where it would be better if you didn’t know too much about “who said THAT?” But if you really need to know, this quote is attributed to author David Icke, who if you click this link, you will discover is truly, a nut.

But back to his quote…

“Today’s mighty oak is just yesterday’s nut, that held its ground”, is so relevant to the underlying conditions of what makes nutgrass so persistant. The most prolific way that nutgrass reproduces is through underground tubers which are also called “nutlets”. These extensive root systems can reach up to four feet deep. 

Does your lawn really need the competition?

Nutgrass typically breaks out during really wet springs, especially in lawns with poor drainage. However, it doesn’t take much moisture to thrive afterward because nutgrass can withstand drought. Because it doesn’t need much moisture to survive, nutgrass beats out grass that is starving for water and nutrients. 

There are two types of nutgrass, yellow and purple. Even though the purple nutsedge produces more tubers, the yellow is still able to produce thousands of nutlets with patches several feet wide. As these spread underground, shoots pop up and become new plants. 

They really are nuts holding their ground!

While underground at depths of 6” to 18” nutlets might hide and survive for up to 10 years before emerging again. Buried at depths like that, they are protected from cold weather and common treatments for killing nutgrass. Some people like taking on the battle against nutgrass on their own like this guy .

Now we see why nutgrass is so hard to get rid of!

If you are interested in the DIY pesticide application, you will probably also need to do some research on the difference between “sedge” and “grass”, this video is very helpful. While DIY is enticing for many projects, taking on pesticides is probably best reserved for those who are a little more “tried and true”. If reading the instruction manual is not your strength, then you probably should call Lawn and Pest Solutions to fight nutgrass, nutsedge or any other weeds that are taking over your lawn. Our licensed technicians can evaluate your lawn and use the correct treatments to not only treat current outbreaks of weeds, but also to prevent them from ever taking root.  Our Lawn and Pest trucks can be found from Memphis and Oxford to all over North Mississippi. Give us a call and let us start helping you today!

A “wasps nest” isn’t something you want to unexpectedly wander into…

But let’s say you do. Don’t start swatting! That attracts more wasps, be calm and move away. Walk indoors if you can. But wait, it followed you inside? Open windows and doors and allow it some room to get out, that’s what it really wants anyway, to get outside. Wasps nests are generally found around loose piles of wood, under porches, along rafters or in empty cans, buckets, boxes etc. that are rarely used. Wasp nests can be rather large and look somewhat like a paper football.

Don’t kill the bees!

By now, everyone knows to protect the bees, but wasps, they are another story. While wasps don’t pollinate plants, they do help us out by eating other insects. Wasps, if you don’t know, pack a pretty tough punch when they sting you, but they don’t die afterwards. But how do you tell the difference between a bee and a wasp? Bees are “husky” and wasps are “slim”, bees are “hairy” and wasps are smooth. While there are other characteristics, aren’t these super easy to remember ? Husky and Hairy versus Slim and Smooth, really great names and mascots for a wrestling match. 

“Wasps Nests” can you say that three times really fast?

Wasp nests are generally designed by the queen in the spring and they grow all spring and early summer. By August, the nests are at their peak size and the wasps are at their most aggressive. The end of the summer is not the best time for you to decide to get rid of a wasp nest on your own.  By August, either get the help of a professional or just try to avoid stirring them up. Wait and let the frost get them, then get rid of the nests so they don’t move back in next spring.  If you are a self declared wasp hunter, start looking for them early in the year and destroy the nests (and the queen) before they grow and get really angry. 

Stop them before they have a fighting chance.

Here are five things you can do to prevent wasps from taking up residence with you next spring:

  • Remove abandoned nests in winter
  • Seal gaps in your home
  • Eliminate loose piles of wood and refuse in your yard
  • Clean up rotten fruit under fruit trees
  • Keep outdoor garbage tightly sealed

Wasp hunters, is that a thing?

Well of course, there’s always “that guy” who decides to either make art of an underground wasp nest (watch here). And then there’s the “inventor” type who decides to modify and old fan and make a wasp vacuum cleaner of sorts to suck all the wasps out of a nest (watch here). Personally, I am allergic to wasp stings and there’s no way I would attempt either of these unique approaches. I would call a professional pest service like Lawn and Pest Solutions and let them handle this while I stayed safely inside. A licensed technician from Lawn and Pest can assess the situation and handle it promptly and safely. We serve all areas between Memphis, Oxford, New Albany and Tupelo and everywhere in between. Give us a call and avoid wasps, hornets, bees and other angry pests!

Sports Field Management

As a newbie to lawn care terminology, “sports field management” makes me think of not the angry coach who storms the field. I think of the older, more calm “sports manager” who comes out of the dugout to pull the angry guy off the umpire. This older guy is obviously, the “sports field manager”. However, a little knowledge goes a long way, and I have recently learned what sports field management means around here.

All you need is a coach and a tractor

Not that long ago, the management of many smaller school sports fields were the responsibility of the coaches. A lucky coach was one who had a few maintenance guys on a crew to help them out in the summer. It’s not that far fetched to assume that there have been parents, booster clubs, even players who put in hours attempting to keep the field cut and green. However, the level of competition continues to rise.

Best BBQ in town

Today, sports are about more than who won the game. It’s about the nicest stadiums, coolest uniforms, loudest sound system and best looking media guides. Hey, we even judge you on your BBQ nachos around here. What team doesn’t want all of that? In addition to looking good in, around, and on the field, the field itself needs to look good! 

OK, it’s more than just good looks.

The sports field is more than just a green patch of grass or “turf”. The field of play should be healthy, thriving and safe! A safe field is not too wet, not too dry, it has the correct density so as not to cause injuries to players. A lush and thriving field can be used quickly after rain. No one has time to forfeit or reschedule games because of a waterlogged field! So what does it take to have a healthy sports field?

Three steps to a thriving and beautiful field of play

There are three key “ingredients” to reviving, building or even dreaming of a healthy field of play. Verticutting, aeration and topdressing are key to good sports field health. Verticutting allows your turf to breathe easy, absorb nutrients and soak in moisture. Aeration perforates the soil to allow water, air and nutrients in. Top dressing applies sand or a soil mixture after aeration. These three steps conducted by our licensed technicians at Lawn and Pest Solutions can give you a winning field . Contact us here at Lawn and Pest Solutions. We are located in North Mississippi and service areas from the Memphis area and south. Our expanding sports field management services could be just what your team needs for a winning season. 

Aeration for lawns

Leave it to me to compare lawn care and skin care (and just a tad bit of art history), but it just had to be done. This week our blog topic is aeration of the lawn. Recently we have been promoting aeration with our new sports field service, but today we are focusing on aeration of our lawns. 

What is lawn aeration?

Aeration is a process where, to put it simply, holes are poked in your lawn. The holes in the top surface allow for “the good stuff” to get down into the roots. “Good stuff” includes water, nutrients, and fertilizer. Aeration makes everything healthy.

Do I need to aerate?

The layer of dead grass (thatch) that builds up on your lawn can rob your grass of necessary rain and nutrients. Aeration can break up and get through thatch which has compacted over time. Aeration can improve the health and beauty of your lawn significantly.

So what does this have to do with skin care?

A few years ago, it became a trend among celebrities to micro needle or derma roll their faces. A derma rolling tool looks scary to say the least, like an old manual lawnmower covered with tiny needles. You roll this scary tool all over your face to “aerate” your skin. After rolling, you indulge your skin with every kind of magical potion you can get your hands on. As crazy as it sounds, the users swear by the process. What’s the difference in the two? Your lawn and your face are both are being aerated!

Do I need a professional to aerate my lawn? 

One actual Google result about lawn aeration is “can I use a pitchfork to aerate my lawn?”. Well. How much time do you have on your hands? OK, the answer is yes, you can get out your pitchfork if you have a lot of time, a lot more energy, and hopefully, a really tiny yard. 

(As promised, here’s one for the painters)

As an avid lover of art history, I can’t just let the pitchfork moment pass without giving you a chance to “aerate” your brain with one little reference to “American Gothic” by Grant Wood. Just in case you ever need a fine arts reference to pitchforks by American artists, you can thank me later. 

Not ready to get out the pitchfork today?

An easier solution would be to call a lawn professional like Lawn and Pest Solutions in New Albany, MS and let one of our licensed technicians take care of you (no pitchforks will be needed). You can contact us here to have one of our nice folks give you a quote on a lawn aeration service. We can make the Lawn and Pest Difference in your lawn today!

Does yard work count as “PE” for homeschooling?

Of course, yard work counts as physical education! Sheltering in place has taken a toll on most of us who are homeschooling children or just have restless teens and/or adults in the house. Here are several activities that will not only take the energy level down a notch, but will help your lawn in the long run.

Get off the sofa and mow the lawn!

Before you know it,  your lawn will be dry enough to get out the mower. This is a great time to teach those sofa dwelling children and teens how to mow.  Take a moment before you crank it up to click on the link to a blog we posted last year on “The Art of Scalping”. It never hurts to refresh your memory!

Here are more outdoor activities that definitely qualify as physical education and will have your lawn looking gorgeous by the time we can all get out and about! Here are some tips to get the children, teens and other household members moving:

  • Be careful not to prune spring or summer flowering shrubs or you will cut off blooms
  • Prune low hanging limbs from trees in your yard, this makes mowing easier, it improves your landscape and it gives the grass around your tree every opportunity to get sunlight it needs
  • If remulching your flower beds to keep weed growth down, don’t allow it to get too thick next to the foundation of your home, this can become a superhighway for termites!
  • Look for standing water in old flower pots, wheelbarrows, birdbaths, that old tire from your lawn mower. It only takes a teaspoon of water for mosquitoes to lay eggs, dump it out!
  • Do something to prevent weeds in your flower beds and lawn. If you don’t know what to do or you don’t want to do it, Lawn 360 is for you! Contact the Lawn and Pest professionals at Lawn and Pest Solutions.

There won’t be a test, but let’s review. Yes, yard work counts as physical education while homeschooling your children. So get them off the sofa, teach them how the lawn mower works and give them an A+.