This weekend would be a great time to treat if you know that you have issues with crabgrass in your lawn. Our specialists recommend treating for Crabgrass from February 15-March 5 for our part of the state.

Crabgrass is difficult to treat while it is growing. Because of this, your best course of action is to use a pre-emergent herbicide before germination. See the chart below for recommendations from our UGA Turfgrass Specialists. You may see a full selection of recommendations in the Georgia Pest Management Handbook-Turf and the publication Weed Control in Home Lawns.

Herbicide RecommendationImportant InformationTrade Name Suggestions
benefinApply 1.5-3lb/1,000 sqft. You may make a second application after 8 weeks. DO NOT apply to newly sprigged grass. Delay reseeding 6 weeks Rated. Excellent Control (>90% control)Balan, Green Light Amaze, Hi-Yield Crabgrass Preventer, StaGreen Crabgrass Preventer with Fertilizer, XL, Team
dithiopyrApply 4.6lbs/1,000sqft then a second application of the same rate 8 weeks later. DO NOT apply to newly sprigged grass. Delay reseeding for 10 weeks. Rated Good to Excellent Control (70->90% control)StaGreen CrabEx, Preen Crabgrass Control, Hi-Yield Turf & Ornamental Weed& Grass Stopper, Spectracide Weed Stop for Lawns
oryzalinApply two applications of 1oz/1,000sqft 8 weeks apart. DO NOT apply to newly sprigged grass. Delay reseeding for 3-4 months after application. Rated Excellent Control (>90% control). Suitable to use near trees, shrubs, and flowersXL, Green Light Amaze, Surflan
prodiamineShould be activated by at least 0.5in of rain or irrigation within 14 days of application. DO NOT apply to newly laid sod. May be used on newly sprigged at no more than 0.5lb/acre. Rated Excellent Control (>90% control)StaGreen Crabgrass Preventer, Lawn Fertilizer plus Weed Control
pendimethalinApply 2lbs/1,000sqft. You may make a second application 8 weeks after the first. DO NOT apply to newly sprigged grass. Delay reseeding for 4 months after application. Rated Excellent Control (>90% control)Halts

Other Control Methods:

The best way to get full control of any pest is to have an Integrated Pest Management approach. This means that you will do more than just pesticides. Perhaps the most important step in IPM is maintaining a healthy environment. You can check out this publication, Ten Steps to a Healthier Home Lawn.

Mowing to the proper height for your lawn type reduces crabgrass’s competitive growth and prevents seed heads from forming.

Water your lawn so that it will get a good, deep soak that reaches your grasses’ roots. We recommend 1in/week (including rainfall). Watering in excess, such as every day or every other day, will provide soil surface moisture which will encourage seeds of weeds to germinate all season.

Disturbing the soil with aeration may provide a space for crabgrass to move in, so this should be avoided if possible. Avoid adding Nitrogen fertilizer during this time as it will feed the immature crabgrass plants.

Crabgrass Photos: