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 Post subject: Unwanted Grass in Beds
PostPosted: Mon Jun 23, 2003 4:35 pm 
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I recently created a couple beds in my backyard to which I have planted some ornamental shrubs along with lavender. Both shrubs & plants are doing well. My problem is grasses which are growing in. My backyard is mostly St. Augustine & when the beds were done, the gardeners dug deep enough to remove all the existing grass (or so I thought) in the bedded areas.

Now two different grasses are popping up. One which is Bermuda & the other of which I have no idea what it is. I've been using the high pressure nozzle on the hose to get to the root system & once the dirt is well saturated, I'm able to pull up the grasses roots & all. However, I feel as though the grass is winning the battle.

I wanted to know if there was anything I could apply safely that would get rid of the grasses once & for all, but not do any harm to the existing shrubs & plants. I live in zone 7, Hurst, TX. Any suggestions would be welcomed!

Thanks!

BCFW

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 23, 2003 5:02 pm 
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Liberal amounts of shade will suppress the bermuda, as well as the plants you're growing.

You might try heavy mulching, like 6 inches deep. When the grasses grow up through the mulch, the roots will be in the mulch and be easy to pull out. That's the theory anyway.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 23, 2003 10:38 pm 
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Location: Saginaw, TX
BCFW,

I agree with Dchall. Heavy mulching will make weed pulling easier.

Unfortunately, you will have to stay on top of your beds and periodically pull weeds/grass for as long as you have a flower bed, at least that's been my experience. But the mulching makes it much more tolerable.

Good luck!

jrod

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 Post subject: unwanted grass in beds
PostPosted: Mon Jun 23, 2003 11:00 pm 
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Thanks for the suggestions offered regarding the mulch. Is 6" of mulch a little overkill? What do I know? Will it continue to pack itself down & will I need to continue adding more mulch regularly? There are also so many mulch choices at the gardening centers. What would be the best type of mulch to buy, Pine? Cedar? What? Also, how close to the existing new shrubs/plants should I be placing the mulch. Am I safe to asume not to mulch right up to the base of the shrubs/plants?

Also, the area where the bed is located, receives almost full sun throughout the entire day.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 23, 2003 11:34 pm 
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Location: Saginaw, TX
BCFW,

Mulching right up to the shrubs is fine and probably encouraged; I know this is how I mulch and I have healthy shrubs.

On types: NO PINE (per Howard Garrett). The best from what I understand is cedar, although Howard doesn't have too big a beef with cypress. I am going to be switching from cypress to cedar soon. Also, use shredded if at all possible; this keeps it from floating and washing out during heavy rains.

I don't have six inches of mulch in my beds, but more is better.

Hope this helps.

jrod

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jun 24, 2003 9:00 am 
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Location: Garland, Texas
I believe the "NO PINE" HG refers to is the pine "nugget" product which is ineffective. For those in a Piney Woods area, pine "straw" is a very acceptable mulch. Mulching with native materials right from your own site is the best mulch, and it is free. Native hardwood and cedar mulches are also excellent choices for those of us in North Texas.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 24, 2003 10:23 am 
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For weeds I would think 6 inches would be minimum, not overkill. Cedar is best. I'm not sure why they don't recommend pine, but I'll go with them on that. Unless you live in East Texas where pines are native, you should stay away. The more of the whole tree you can get in the mulch the better. This means that if you can get a local tree trimmer to give you a load of his chipped trimmings where the entire limb and leaves are all chipped together, I think you get a better mulch. The leaves help rot the trunk and vice versa. It's balanced for the microbes.

If you could build a little wall around the mulch that would help it stay in place. Small rocks, lava rocks or something more attractive, is all you need. The mulch will disappear from the bottom down as time goes on, so replenishment is needed.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 24, 2003 11:28 am 
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Hey ya'll, thanks for all the great suggestions on mulching my beds.

I'll certainly be looking at the cedar mulch suggested. I'm not sure how it'll come packaged. Does the cedar mulch come shredded? Would the shredded be the best to select? If it doesn't come shredded, what "mulch size" should I be on the lookout for?

A guy at the Garden Center was really pushing the shredded cypress mulch on me. What's they deal with the cypress mulch? Is is just not a good thing to be mulching with?

Regarding procuring mulch from a tree trimmer that has mulched an entire tree. If he had mulched a tree wich was diseased or had some other funky ailment, wouldn't that then get into the soil in the bed & eventually spread to the shrubs & plants that are in the bed now?

Thanks for everyone's time!

BCFW

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 Post subject: Types of mulch
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2003 11:21 am 
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Location: ft. worth, tx
So, what about just mulching with grass clippings. Does that count?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2003 4:26 pm 
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Location: Garland, Texas
bcfw

All of the cedar mulches I have used over the years has been a shredded product. That is what you want.

ekr470

Sure you can mulch with grass clippings. Though it is not aesthetically pleasing (to the eye or nose) as is the cedar mulch. It is also prone to blow away. It can serve a much better purpose mulched on your yard.

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