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Learn your Lawn: Paspalum

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What Is Paspalum?


Thin or Bull Paspalum grasses are commonly found in residential lawns throughout the northeastern United States. They are often confused with Crabgrass because of some similar characteristics. A good way to distinguish Paspalum grasses from Crabgrass is by the large amount of hair on Paspalum leaves.


Paspalum grass is characterized by its fine- to medium-textured leaves and its clusters of spiky seed heads. It is known for its adaptability to different growing conditions and for its ability to grow in wet soil and tolerate flooding for long periods. It is commonly used for turfgrass, forage for livestock, and erosion control. 


How Can I Control Paspalum In My Lawn?


An effective way to control small infestations of Paspalum is by pulling individual plants by hand and repairing these areas with desirable grass seed varieties or sod. If the infestation is larger, other forms of control may be necessary. 


A thick, healthy, well-maintained lawn is always the best line of defense. This can be achieved through beneficial cultural practices, which include:

  • Core Aeration: Aerating your lawn can improve soil drainage and help reduce the likelihood of lawn diseases. This will also alleviate soil compaction and allow water and nutrients to penetrate deeper into the soil.

  • Fertilize Regularly: Regular applications of Weed Man’s specially formulated, slow-release granular fertilizer will help provide your lawn with adequate nutrients. These applications are timed specifically to avoid over fertilizing the lawn.

  • Watering: Under normal circumstances, you should be watering your lawn a few times per week for 30-45 minutes in each area. During hot and dry periods, most lawns should be watered as much as required to maintain its desired green color. Always water in the early morning so the turf has time to dry by nightfall.

  • Mowing: Maintain a regular mowing schedule with a razor sharp blade. Never remove more than a ⅓ of the grass blade at each mowing.


Recommended Mowing Height

Common Bermudagrass - ¾ to 1¼ inches

Hybrid Bermudagrass - ½ to 1½  inches

Centipedegrass - 1 to 2 inches

Zoysiagrass - 1 to 2½ inches

St. Augustine - 3 to 4 inches

Fescue - 3 to 4 inches

Your local Weed Man professional will be able to offer other solutions and recommend the best form of treatment that is suitable to improve the conditions of your lawn.