I've searched a few times trying to identify the week in the picture below. I always find plenty of pictures, but it's photography pictures. rather than weed identification. I just bought my house a few months ago and my lawn is riddled with different types of weed grass that I'd like to get rid of. I can identify the easy ones like crabgrass, clover, etc. But this one is throwing me for a loop.

So I ask those who know the answer. What type of weed is this, and what do I need to put down in order to get rid of it? For the record, I took the picture from my neighbors lawn. Mine is not nearly as consistent, and I just cut the grass today.

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2 Answers 2


It appears you have Foxtail Spear Grass if I am correct. The foxtail refers to the flowers, clumped together at the top. Search for "foxtail grass" or "foxtail spear grass" to confirm.

While the specific species varies, this can be bad if you have dogs, and for allergic people. The easiest thing to do is to remove them thoroughly by hand or using mowers and disposing of them with yard waste or in trash. It is not advisable to compost this.

You can use a herbicide after removing the grass, but herbicides themselves can be toxic. The best solution is to remove the grass entirely, and then mulch heavily. After the initial removal, it will be easier to identify and remove the new growths that sprout. Planting something else, like even putting down a lawn or growing other plants is also a good way of making sure that you achieve eventual control of this.

Note, that both you and your neighbor and anybody else close by, are best served by your mutual co-operation in timing and removing these things around the same time and laying constant watch. These things disperse their seeds through wind, through contact from your shoe soles, through animals, pretty much any way they can and thus you will need to stay on guard all the time.

Just as an example, I have removed these and other grasses from my landlord's yard, but because most of our neighbors don't care, we never have full control and every season, I have to run around and pluck these guys out throughout the growing seasons.

I forgot to add, when dry in large clumps, they run the risk of starting brush fires.

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    Nice! You nailed it pretty good! I don't know why I never thought to Google "Scott's Weed Identification," but I did that and it showed a page that had any weed I could ever imagine. What I came up with was Green Foxtail. In my case, removing all of the grass manually would probably be quite a challenge. I also have the same issue with the neighbors. I'd have better luck winning the lottery, than getting them to control weeds. They just care to see that green stuff grows.... Thanks again!
    – DrZoo
    Sep 24, 2016 at 5:39
  • Glad that you were able to ID the weed! You can try mowing them down if they are spread across large areas. You don't have to do all of it in one go, you can do portions of your yard at a time, it is just that it may not be too efficient. But, I am sure you will find a way. Best Wishes. Sep 24, 2016 at 5:47
  • Regular mowing the lawn will solve the problem. BTW small birds and chicken like them. Sep 24, 2016 at 16:44

It is one specie of Setaria. It is one many species named Foxtail, as written in the other answer.

Regular mowing the lawn will solve the problem. BTW small birds and chicken like them.

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