To win the war against combine professional care with good follow up procedures. Thousands of seeds produced by last years crabgrass plants were blown and carried virtually everywhere. The trick is to keep the seeds from germinating. For that action must be taken early in the season, before weather gets too warm. Once seeds have germinated aggressive crabgrass plants can take over.
Professional treatment includes an application of a pre-emergence herbicide, watered in by rainfall or a supplemental sprinkling. This helps to create a barrier against sprouting crabgrass.
Keep the barrier intact by NOT raking and by watering to keep the soil from drying out and cracking. Postpone aeration until later in the season.
You should also be careful not to cut your grass too short. Such “scalping” can lead to grass thinning. making it much easier for crabgrass to flourish. For the same reason don’t get too aggressive with your string trimmer or blade edger.
In some seasons and areas, a second application may also be necessary. If some crabgrass plants get growing even under your watchful eye post-emergent controls are also available to take care of those.
Healthy, dense turf chokes out crabgrass. So the best defense against unwanted growth is to combine our treatments with good mowing and watering practices.