What’s this in my lawn? Tall fescue vs quackgrass vs crabgrass vs...???


LGY

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Hi,

I am new to lawn care (Near Sacramento area) and when we moved in around Jan we thought we had crabgrass in the lawn and I have been diligently removing them every 3-4 days and cut the lawn once a week and keep it short.

My husband told me those were crabgrass.
Our lawn is tall fescue bluegrass delta 90/10.

I noticed these has been now growing shorter and thinner making it harder to catch/pull. I researched online and to my horror that tall fescue looks close to crab/quack grass and I could not tell the differences (plus mine don’t look like having a red spot in the center like the online pictures, and it’s not June... making myself doubting my husband initial response)

I guess my questions are:
1) what's this In my lawn
2) how to get rid of them (if I need to) now?
3) anything I should look out for next year as precautionary step?


thanks in advance.

423CCAF3-E23B-4188-8012-DB9E53DA4E51.jpeg
 

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If you mow often and use the grass catcher you can get the weeds before they go to seed. That will help you next year as well as this year. Time weeding efforts not by how large the weeds are getting, but by observing their development. No matter how small a weed may be, if you are seeing flowers, your time is running out. Seeds are already starting to form in those flowers.

Be aware of weed growth flushes in your area. In California there are two main ones, fall and spring. If you let the fall weeds go, the resulting dropped seed will increase the number of weeds to deal with in spring.
 

LGY

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Thanks oneeye.

so those in the pictures areweed and not grass that I should be pulling, correct.

My cutter is a manual reel and not a electric one which didn’t come with a grass catcher. Is it OK to comb the cut grass after or would that spread it worse? So far I’ve only cut them and leave them.

thanks again

If you mow often and use the grass catcher you can get the weeds before they go to seed. That will help you next year as well as this year. Time weeding efforts not by how large the weeds are getting, but by observing their development. No matter how small a weed may be, if you are seeing flowers, your time is running out. Seeds are already starting to form in those flowers.

Be aware of weed growth flushes in your area. In California there are two main ones, fall and spring. If you let the fall weeds go, the resulting dropped seed will increase the number of weeds to deal with in spring.
 
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If the seed falls back on the ground the weeds will spread like crazy and take over the whole lawn.. Hand pulling is another option, I don't mind pulling weeds and I hope you don't mind. Good luck
 

LGY

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Thanks. I need to handpick daily for 2 hours daily to keep them at the bay (and I have a very small lawn that is like the size of two standard bathtubs). It’s a bit crazy consider it is new lawn. The biggest problem was since it’s a newly built home and my neighbors didn’t do their yards yet, my lawn is surrounded by weeds everywhere and the wind just keep bringing stuff over. It also didn’t help when I sometimes wonder if it were tall fescue or crabgrass so I will leave the non-stem ones for a day and the next day the wheat looking structure came out already. Right now as newbie I did one round of naked eye check and handpick, and did a second round of “pat test” to see if I felt something harder than regular grass.

Anything I can do to make it more effective for removing them? Is there a spray that will just kill the weed without killing the grass? I looked up Quinclorac online but it seemed it might kill the grass too?


If the seed falls back on the ground the weeds will spread like crazy and take over the whole lawn.. Hand pulling is another option, I don't mind pulling weeds and I hope you don't mind. Good luck
 
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I think what you have is annual rye, it’s not a weed it’s a temporary lawn grass. You might have another grass like tall fescue and/or perennial rye mixed in. Any of them should be mown at 3” once a week. Now that you can go out, take a sample to your local independent nursery and ask them what you have. They’ll tell you what you need to do.
 
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