I took over caring for my parentsâ€™ front lawn in Dallas after one of them had a health crisis. Unfortunately, since their concept of lawn maintenance consisted of mowing â€“ period
, I found myself surrounded with more weeds than turf and up to my kneecaps in dallisgrass. So, I was very blessed to "accidentally" hear the Dirt Doctor on the radio one Saturday. After 3 years of engaging in mortal combat armed with corn gluten meal, sugar, compost and my trusty screwdriver, the dallisgrass was vanquished, the St. Augustine was beginning to grow beautifully and our lawn was beginning to turn from eyesore to acceptable. Until the man-made disaster of last year and the act of God of this year. I am now waging war against winter bluegrass.
I delegated the mowing to focus on lawn restoration; and after the lawn was mowed without the bag in place in the spring of last year, the winter bluegrass seeds were spread all over the lawn and more than half the lawn has been infested with the winter bluegrass. Then the unexpected snow dump this March compromised the St. Augustine turf and now there is a lot of thatch. I want to help the St. Augustine recover without feeding the winter bluegrass. I am pulling as much of the seeding bluegrass by the root to keep the seeds from going to the turf and to keep the grass, after it is mowed, from forming seeds at a very low height. I am withholding the general application corn gluten meal because I read that bluegrass is a result of too much nitrogen in the soil, but I have applied dry molasses.
Two questions, please: 1) What organic products can be applied that will aid the St. Augustine in its recovery while thoroughly vexing the winter bluegrass, making the soil condition inhospitable to the bluegrass, and not encouraging bluegrass growth; and 2) besides mowing with the lawnmower bag in place and removing the bluegrass at the root, is there any other way to effectively deal with the seeds that are being produced?
If you made it this far, thanks so much! If I donâ€™t get an answer, I hope to have prompted a smile!
Have a wonderful day!