When it comes to maintaining a beautiful lawn, clovers, dandelions, and other weeds are your worst enemy. You can get the yard of your dreams by applying pre-emergent weed control to your grass. To do it right, there are many considerations and best practices– read on to learn how to DIY pre-emergent weed control. Or, click here to sit back, relax, and let us take care of it for you. 

Pre-emergent herbicides are largely effective in the battle against weeds, but to treat your own lawn, you must have a good understanding of how and when to use them. There are many options for which pre-emergent herbicide to choose, and they must be mixed correctly and applied evenly over the target area. For the best results, the chemical compositions should be applied before the invasive sedge grasses or thistles have emerged from the soil. 

Read on to learn more about pre-emergent as a DIY solution, or contact us through the button below if you are interested in having professional landscapers manage your lawn care and maintenance for you!

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What Is Pre-Emergent Weed Control?

Herbicides are toxins that kill unwanted plants while leaving the desired vegetation undisturbed. Similarly, pre-emergent herbicides are chemical compositions that destroy unwelcome weeds before they even begin to grow.

A properly applied pre-emergent herbicide will eliminate weeds as their seeds begin to sprout by creating a protective barrier in the soil containing growth-inhibiting chemicals. The seed will be unable to undergo cell division or produce the enzymes needed to create a seedling. Without seedlings, the goosegrass, dead nettle, or other lawn pests will die before they become visible. In return, you can expect a beautiful yard year-round.

Keep in mind that pre-emergent weed killer does not kill existing weeds, only the seeds of new weeds, preventing them from sprouting.

MetroGreenscape uses pre-emergent weed control to prevent weed seedlings from ever growing.

When to Apply Pre-Emergent Weed Control in Charlotte

It is essential to apply the pre-emergent weed control before weed seeds begin to germinate, or produce young plants. Some weeds emerge early, such as dandelions. Others, such as star thistle, germinate in the fall. Timing is everything!

Germination typically occurs when temperatures reach 50 degrees. In Charlotte, pre-emergent herbicides should be applied in March. As a general rule, it is better to apply the herbicide early. If applied too late, the pre-emergent weed killer will be completely ineffective.

Selecting & Applying The Right Pre-Emergent Weed Killer

Pre-emergent herbicides are tricky because they come in various forms and some only work on specific weeds. You must also choose between selective or nonselective herbicides. If you opt for the selective herbicide, you need to know what it will and will not kill. That means you need to know the types of weeds in your yard. For this reason, many Charlotte homeowners choose to have a landscaping professional like MetroGreenscape handle their pre-emergent weed control treatments

Here are some tips and tricks:

  • Apply the herbicide evenly. If you miss spots, the seeds will sprout and weeds will grow. 
  • Add water. Water activates the pre-emergent herbicide and “washes” the chemicals into the soil. For best results, apply the weed killer before an expected rainfall.
  • Do not disturb. One mistake that people make is to apply the herbicide and then aerate the lawn. Never use a pre-emergent and then work the soil. The dirt acts as an effective barrier to the herbicide.
  • Know which chemical is used in the pre-emergent you select. Common chemicals include Prodiamine (best for crabgrass, dandelions, and plantains), Oxyzalin or Surflan (effective against yellow foxtail and vines like morning glory), and Dithiopyr (best control root production in vining plants and grasses).
At MetroGreenscape, we like to apply pre-emergent weed control before weed seeds begin to germinate.

Additional Considerations When Using Pre-Emergents

While pre-emergent weed control for lawns can be effective in preventing certain weeds from taking root in your backyard, these chemicals will not kill all weeds. Pre-emergents target seeds. Therefore, these chemicals can damage lawns, especially those that have been newly seeded, if not applied properly. Because of this, it is best to understand the restrictions of each type of herbicide you use.

Some weed seeds will sit dormant in your soil for years and may grow despite the layer of herbicides. Other weed seeds will be carried by wind, birds, and even lawn equipment. If there is soil, sunshine, and water, weeds will grow. Because of this, the most effective means of weed control focus on growing healthy, disease-resistant soil. A professional landscaper in Charlotte can help homeowners determine the best turf management plan for their backyard.

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Professional Lawn Care & Maintenance from MetroGreenscape

At MetroGreenscape, we know the patterns to look for, how to analyze and address your weed problems, and the proper ways to mix and apply the right chemicals to those weeds. Keeping weeds at bay is hard and time-consuming work. Plus, it requires knowledge and experience to accurately diagnose and treat pesky invasives with the correct pre-emergent herbicide option.

Our lawn care experts have over 20 years of experience installing sod, mowing, fertilizing, aerating, and controlling weeds in backyards across the Charlotte, Rock Hill, and Fort Mill areas. We know exactly what yards in our humid southern climate need to thrive. That is why we offer Charlotte homeowners comprehensive annual lawn care and maintenance plans starting at $325 a month.

What’s Included in Our Charlotte Lawn Care Plan

When a homeowner signs up for annual lawn maintenance with MetroGreenscape, our technicians come to your home every 7 to 10 days to care for your lawn. During mowing season, we’ll ensure the grass is cut to your or your neighborhood’s standards. In the fall and winter months, we focus on taking care of leaf removal, aeration, and fertilization needs along with flower bed maintenance. We even include periodic inspections to ensure you’re receiving the highest quality service available, along with additional options that you can customize to meet your needs. And of course, if a maintenance client needs help with a complex landscaping project, we can handle any landscaping projects as a part of our add-on service offerings!

Interested in Landscaping or Yard Maintenance?

With MetroGreenscape, you can get the beautiful yard of your dreams that will make all your neighbors jealous. Contact us through our online form or call (704)486-5095 and a member of our team will get started on creating your personalized lawn plan.

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