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What are these weeds and how do I get rid of them? They're thriving in the dry soil while the grass struggles.

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The last weed I think is creeping indigo. We live in Brisbane and it is everywhere - I have been painstakingly trying to cut off flowers before they become seed pods and dig out the whole plant - tap root and all. I have now been told that probably best to cut off at ground level and drip poison onto the tap root to really kill.

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It is tough to see detail in your pictures but it looks like Lotus comiculata or bird's foot trefoil, bird's feet trefoil? Very invasive weed. There is a reason plants like this get labeled invasive weeds. They can out compete all other plants and thus stay vigorous, green and have kinda pretty flowers. Is it normal to allow your lawn to go dormant over there? Allowing a lawn to go dormant is the best way to select for those weeds.

Dormant plants just can not will not be able to compete. Do you have cool season grasses down there or warm? What is your grass species? What are your watering restrictions?

First thing to do is to continue chopping those flowers off before they go to seed. If they have already gone to seed, we can discuss how best to deal with this and we are not talking chemical herbicides...yet. Mow and BAG that lawn LOW to suck up as many seeds as possible. Put those seeds in a plastic bag to decompose, not in your compost pile. Never let this plant produce flowers if at all possible and you'll be able to eradicate it over time. You've got to get your lawn up to snuff or these weeds will be the greenest part of your lawn.

There are a few other ways to produce a lush competitive lawn. First off let's start watering your lawn deeply then allow to dry out before watering again. This promotes deeper root systems while most weeds are shallow rooted. Let me know the composition of your lawn grasses. Do you have a shop vac? I'd go out and suck up all those pods/seeds before trying to use the mower as a vacuum/pruner. When did you last aerate? Fertilize and with what formulation?

  • The lawn is mostly comprised of Blue Couch (Digitaria didactyla) and Couch/ Bermuda (Cynodon dactylon). Both of these are very much warm season grasses and go into deep dormancy over the cooler months. The issue is that now the temperature has substantially warmed up to 25-32deg Celsius during the day there has been hardly any rain for months so the lawn is struggling to come back but the weeds and horrendous Bahia Grass (which I consider a weed) is doing just fine. We don't have any watering restrictions. My soil is sandy and compact and probably has never been aerated. I've never fertilized. – Luke Allison Nov 22 '16 at 6:30
  • OK. Excellent information Luke. You know more than you let on! I am pretty ignorant with warm season grasses, I am the queen of cool season grass lawns. Have been learning lots trying to answer stuff I know not...ha ha! How much of your lawn is now this weed called bird's feet trefoil? Let's see if someone else comes up with something else of course. Warm season grasses need to be mowed short. They have very shallow root systems but if kept from dormancy can easily out compete weeds. Aeration, fertilizer (how funny, Luke, NEVER)? Let's get bringing that grass back and we'll talk! – stormy Nov 22 '16 at 6:43
  • Also, it looks like your sod is too high and touching your wood fence. Is that correct? If so, we need to talk if you want to keep your fence...a picture of your entire lawn, or at least a larger picture. Fertilizer. I'd go find a good 'organic' more expensive type of fertilizer meant for warm season grasses. I hate the words organic and natural but I've been blown away with the results of organic slow release fertilizer. I've got to go check on a few things concerning warm season grasses but plants need water and us humans have to replace chemicals needed by our plants in our soils. – stormy Nov 22 '16 at 6:50
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    Especially bahia grass. Why on earth council have used this rubbish on their medium strips is beyond me. It has more seed stems than blades of grass and needs more regular mowing than most if not all other warm season grasses. It has invaded my lawn and I'm highly allergic to the seeds so I've just finished applying glyphosate that I mixed into glycerin using the washing up gloves trick! – Luke Allison Nov 24 '16 at 1:32
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    Re: landlord. Maybe I'll ask for Air Con while I'm at it ;) – Luke Allison Nov 24 '16 at 1:33

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