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Annoying Lawn Weeds Par Excellence: Crabgrass and Dandelions

by Dawn West, All About Lawns Columnist

There are two weeds that can drive you absolutely batty: crabgrass and dandelions. But with a little know how, even outrageously annoying weeds like the pesky pair can be taken care of. Here's how to tackle each of them.

If crabgrass and dandelions have ever plagued you, read on and be plagued no more.
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Annoying Lawn Weed #1: Crabgrass

Why it's annoying: It's almost impossible to kill without damaging the good grass, and it spreads with such ferocity that if unchecked, it can take over a perfectly lovely lawn.

How to stop it: First, find out when it germinates in your area, and spray a preemergence herbicide in the spring. Timing is essential, so check with your local county agricultural extension office to find out when to spray. Second, once crabgrass shows itself, spot treat it with a non-selective herbicide. Yes, it will also kill the good grass around it, but you can fill that back in.

Annoying Lawn Weed #2: Dandelion

Why it's annoying: Thanks to terrible taproots and their annoying perennial nature, even if you dig out the little yellow beasts, they'll probably be back.

How to stop it: Spray in the fall. As perennials, dandelions store nutrients in their roots for the winter. If you spray when they're building their store, they'll take the poison down along with the rest, and you'll kill them, roots and all. Bear in mind that digging them out can be dangerous. If you don't get the whole root, they may come back. A spot treatment with a non-selective herbicide is always a good option.

Lawn weeds can drive you crazy. Don't let them.

About the Author
Dawn West B.A. holds a B.A. in English from Harvard University and teaches writing at Oregon State University.

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