Summer weeds? Already? Yes, even though it is February, now is the best time to think about treating for weeds you see in the summer. At this time of year, we will apply Pre-emergent herbicides. For some vocabulary:

Pre-emergent: applied prior to weed seed germination and emergence

Post emergent: applied as spot treatment directly to the weed infestation

Many people love to take good care of their lawns and here, in Coastal Georgia, our warm-season turf is king. This means that those pesky summer weeds can be a major headache. Unfortunately, we don’t think about how annoying they are to work with until they are popping up in the lawn. Treating with a pre-emergent herbicide will give you a leg up in tackling this issue in your summer lawn.

It is especially important to treat for those extra hardy (and annoying) weeds such as crabgrass, goosegrass, nutsedges, and burweeds. We recommend appling herbicides to control summer annual weedsprior to soil temperatures reaching 55° F.

You can view our UGA Weather Stations to track the soil temperatures. Some of our local stations are:

  • Brantley County: Nahunta
  • Camden County: Woodbine
  • Chatham County: Ossabaw, Savannah, Skidaway
  • Glynn County: Jekyll Island
  • McIntosh County: Townsend
  • Wayne County: Odum

To find the soil temperature information: From the homepage, click on the pin for the location you are looking for. You will have a window pop-up that does include the 4 inch soil temperature. The next two images represent the current conditions taken February 2, 2024.

screenshot of UGA Weather Network station website. shows image of Georgia with several blue pin points representing each weather station.
Image highlighting the Townsend weather station. Click on the blue pin that correlates with the Station Name you need.

To see 2 inch and also 8 inch deep soil temperatures when you click on the Weather Station pin.

Screenshot from UGA Weather Network website showing temperatures at depth of soil. 2 inches 53.7, 4 inches 52.2, 8 inches 53.8 degrees Fahrenheit
This is an example pulled from the Townsend Weather Station.

You can also see historical data for average soil temperature on this website. Hover over Calculator on the black bar across the top of the screen. The first option in the drop down menu is Soil Temperature. This is the selection you need to make.

screenshot from UGA Weather Network showing drop down menu to select Soil Temperature from Calculator
Image showing the drop down menu under calculator.

Next you will select the station name and date ranges. *Note: the 2023 values for the Townsend weather station are extremely high. This is because the weather station was installed in middle 2023 and it does not have values for part of the year. If you see other very strange values on this station’s historical data (or others) it is possible that it simply does not have the appropriate data range recorded. If you have questions, reach out to your UGA Extension Office at 1-800-ASK-UGA1 to find out more about the values you see.

Image showing results of average soil temperature for Townsend weather station. *Note: the extreme values for 2023 are not accurate!

To find which pre-emergent herbicide you should use, refer to the Georgia Pest Management Handbook Turf Section and/or call your County Agriculture Agent at 1-800-Ask-UGA1


Now is the time to treat your lawn for summer weeds. Use a pre-emergent herbicide based on the type of turf you have and weeds you are trying to control.


UGA Weather Network

Weed Control in Home Lawns publication

Georgia Pest Management Handbook and specifically the Turf section of the Home and Garden handbook

Georgia Turf website