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How to Kill Nutsedge: the Complete Guide to Eradicating This Pest From Your Garden and Landscape! (2023)

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Nutsedge is a pesky weed that can quickly take over a lawn if left unchecked. It’s important to know how to properly control and prevent it. There are some simple steps you can take for eliminating this grass-like weed. Improving soil quality with composting and aeration can help. You can also use herbicides to remove baby nutlets or pull out roots by hand. Understanding how best to manage these weeds is essential for keeping them away!


Killing nutsedge can be tricky, but with the right tips and tricks you can get rid. Set your mower as high as possible to prevent light from reaching the weeds. If you spot any in your lawn, apply an herbicide like Bonide Sedge Ender over it.

For patches outside of your grassy areas, try using soil replacement techniques or Scotts Turf Builder Triple Action Built for Seeding to get rid.

Mow High

Mowing your lawn at the proper height can help control nutsedge, even though it may seem counter-intuitive. By cutting your grass higher and using Scotts Turf Builder Lawn Food to fertilize regularly, you can create a lush lawn that will naturally crowd out purple and yellow nutsedge.

Pre-emergent controls such as mulching techniques or selecting certain plants for planting in infested areas are effective weed prevention methods against Nutsedge.

With these tools in hand, you’ll be able to maintain a beautiful turf free of pesky weeds!

Kill in Lawn

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Mulch properly, fertilize regularly, and landscape well to take control of your lawn and eliminate pesky nutsedge.
Over seeding can also help, as long as you choose a turf type that competes effectively with purple or yellow nutsedge.

Soil testing can reveal nutrient deficiencies which should be addressed to keep tall umbrella sedge from invading small plants in the area.
Adding an extra layer of topsoil on top of existing soil will help prevent regrowth if done correctly.

With these tips in mind, you’ll soon have a lush landscape free from unwanted grass-like weed!

Kill Outside Lawn

To get rid of nutsedge in your outdoor lawn, take the necessary steps to strengthen the turf and crowd out any existing weeds. Mulch to reduce weed germination and dethatch to remove old grass clippings. Iron sulfate can weaken purple nutsedges. Solarize or hand-weed, using organic solutions.

Nutsedge is often referred to as a super weed or grass. It’s difficult to control. Follow pest notes from experts like Cardinal Lawns on how best approach killing this pesky lawn weed. Regain control of your landscape quickly and effectively!

About Nutsedge

how to kill nutsedge
You’ve likely encountered a grass-like weed with yellow-green leaves and a spiky head: Nutsedge. It’s a pesky plant that can quickly take over your lawn, crowding out desirable plants. It thrives in wet soil and needs special techniques for controlling it.

Luckily, there are strategies you can use to help eliminate it from your landscape.

Grass-like Weed

You may not realize it, but nutsedge is actually a grass-like weed, not a true grass. There are two common types: yellow and purple. Yellow tubers can grow 8-14 inches deep in the soil; purple ones form patches up to 10 feet wide.

It thrives in wet, poorly drained areas, making it hard to control. Organic solutions or chemical herbicides need to be applied properly for success.

Mulching can help prevent germination, blocking out sunlight. Cultural practices like proper mowing height also help. Tall lawns leave little room for growth, while short lawns stimulate its growth more easily.

To get rid of existing weeds, add corn gluten meal during springtime and monitor green kyllinga. Then apply further treatments, such as additional mulch or chemical herbicides like Bonide Sedge Ender.

Difficult to Control

Controlling nutsedge can be difficult. But with the right approach, you can keep it under control.

Over-watering your lawn is one of the worst things. Moist soil encourages its growth.

Mulching and solarization are two methods. They reduce nutgrass infestation. Plastic sheets or tarps over a bed of mulch on sunny days kill off weed seeds in their germination stage.

Planting diversity helps ward off nutsedge. Planting new plants that shade out existing weeds like individual nutsedge plants which don’t spread easily when shaded from sunlight.

Weed barriers such as cardboard, newspaper and fabric are effective tools. They prevent nutgrass from entering your garden.

An herbicide like Scotts NutsEdge Killer Ready-to-Spray offers complete kill. Apply correctly according to directions on label instructions.

With patience and diligence you should have success controlling this issue!

Yellow-green Leaves

You’ll know it’s nutsedge when you spot the yellow-green leaves – don’t let them take over your lawn! Nutsedge is difficult to control; they produce tiny tubers that can grow up to 8-14 inches deep in the soil. Even if their V-shaped stem and spiky head are pulled out, there may be remnants of these underground tubers, which could lead to regrowth.

To prevent this, use weeding techniques like mulching strategies or natural solutions like fertilizer alternatives. Make sure to employ them in moist soil conditions where types of weeds thrive.

It’s important for a healthy lawn that biological control measures are taken, so desirable plants don’t get crowded out by nutsedge and other invasive species. But with proper care and maintenance, your landscape will remain lush for years.

Spiky Head

You can identify nutsedge by its spiky purple or yellow head – don’t let it take over your lawn! It reproduces quickly, making it difficult to control. Composting benefits and fertilizer alternatives are important for preventing the weed from spreading. Non-chemical solutions such as mulching techniques and corn gluten meal treatments have been used successfully.

Overwatered lawns should be avoided since they provide an ideal environment for the weed’s underground black tubers. Flower beds may also need special attention, since purple nutsedge flowers attract bees with their sweet nectar scent and provide no real benefit other than aesthetics.

Control of this invasive species is possible with proper understanding. Know what steps are necessary before tackling any infestation problems!

Improve Soil

Improve Soil
Improving your soil is an important part of getting rid of nutsedge. To start, aerate the turf to allow for better drainage and fill any holes with compost. Applying corn gluten meal in the spring will help prevent germination of new nutsedge seeds. Judicious watering will discourage existing plants from growing further.

You can also try a soil replacement technique. Remove the soils around each weed and replace them with nutgrass-free material.

Aerate and Compost

Aerate your lawn to create air pockets and allow nutrients to reach the roots. Topdress with compost for an extra boost of nutrition that’ll help crowd out any nutsedge. Mulch strategies like arborist Howard Garrett’s organic gardener fabric mulches or rock mulches can be used on trees to prevent pests from invading landscape areas. Apply preventive measures like natural solutions and soil preparation for organic solutions. All these steps can work together towards a successful nutsedge elimination plan without resorting solely on chemical treatments.

Corn Gluten Meal

To naturally control nutsedge without harsh chemicals, try applying corn gluten meal to your lawn in the spring. It’s an effective way to prevent pesky weeds from germinating. Corn gluten meal is a natural weedkiller that works by inhibiting root development and suppressing seed germination.

It can be applied as part of composting techniques with beneficial insects or used on its own as mulching strategies for water conservation in Las Cruces. For mature plants, brown flowers indicate successful application. Organic gardeners may opt for herbicides instead, but using corn gluten meal when possible is best for long-term weed management success!

Judicious Watering

You can help stop nutsedge from growing by watering your lawn judiciously and not overdoing it. Poor drainage is a common factor in the growth of nutsedge, so regularly aerate your turf to improve air circulation and water retention. Before applying pre-emergent herbicides like Bonide Sedge Ender, use it according to label directions.

You can also employ natural deterrents like mulching techniques or non-chemical treatments. Regular feeding with Scotts Turf Builder Lawn Food or hand weeding strategies can be used for effective pre emergent control. Transitioning to the next step–using corn gluten meal–will further increase chances of successful elimination of pesky weeds from your landscape.

Soil Replacement

Replacing the soil with nutgrass-free soil around each weed can help you take control of your landscape and banish those pesky nutsedge for good.

To do this effectively, it’s important to understand how grass fungus interaction, soil pH levels, organic fertilizer application techniques and mulching techniques work together within a specific environment. Researching the type of southern turf grasses that best suit your climate will also be beneficial in understanding what kind of amendments should be added to unamended soils when replacing existing weeds with new ones.

It’s best practice to remove a cross section from below the surface so any tiny pieces of plant material are removed before adding fresh topsoil back into place. Weather conditions must also be taken into account, as this may impact how quickly or slowly certain treatments take effect.

But if done correctly, by following basic steps like aerating compacted areas before amending them with compost, these practices can help create an environment where nutsedge will have difficulty establishing itself again over time due to healthier competition from other plants in its area.

Remove Baby Nutlets

Remove Baby Nutlets
Removing baby nutlets is an important step in killing nutsedge. Pulling the roots of existing plants can help remove some of them, but it won’t get rid of all the tubers.

Applying herbicides like Bonide Sedge Ender may be necessary to effectively kill nutsedge and prevent regrowth. Remember to follow package instructions carefully when using any herbicide products on your lawn for best results.

Pulling Roots

Pulling out the roots of nutsedge is important for controlling it. But it can be hard to remove all tubers and prevent regrowth. Nutsedge grows from underground tubers that form a chain of football-shaped ones, each producing a new plant.

To pull up the root system, you must get to the tubers 8-14 inches deep. Start by digging around each flower head at its base. Then carefully dig down until you reach the mother plant’s base and any attached nutlets or chains below.

Cultural control methods are the best way to control nutsedge. This includes pre emergent herbicides, fertilizer control, natural remedies like solarization, and judicious watering regimes. Don’t just pull out individual plants from your lawn or garden beds – this won’t eliminate it over time.


If you’re looking for an effective way to get rid of nutsedge, consider using herbicides such as Bonide Sedge Ender. Be sure to follow the application tips carefully.

A triple action approach with fertilizer use, mulching strategies, soil conditioners, irrigation techniques and weed barriers can give you the best results. Herbicides are often used as part of this process, but take into account factors like temperature when applying them. Proper timing is key, so make sure you apply them early in the season before they spread their tubers underground or reproduce by seed.

Follow these steps for successful eradication of pesky nutsedges from your lawn!

Prevention and Maintenance

Prevention and Maintenance
Maintaining your lawn is key to preventing and controlling nutsedge. Mow high, feed regularly with Scotts Turf Builder Lawn Food, apply Scotts Turf Builder Triple Action Built for Seeding when seeding a new lawn in the North. Learn to identify and kill common weeds to keep nutsedge away. Follow the Discouraging Weeds Guide from Scott’s, plus their seasonal guide on achieving lushness, to repair bare patches while keeping your lawn healthy enough to crowd out any unwanted weeds.

Mow High

Mowing your lawn at the proper height can help you keep nutsedge away by allowing grass to crowd out the weed. Mulching benefits, herbicide use, soil testing and weed identification are all important. To maximize mulching benefits and prevent an infestation of nutsedge, mow highu2014leaving 8-14 inches between blade tips for optimum growth of desired plants.

If weeds have already taken over, consider using a nonselective postemergent herbicide like Bonide Sedge Ender for control. But be sure to follow directions carefully!

By following these steps closely, you’ll soon see results in controlling this pesky weed before it takes hold of your garden beds and lawns!

Regular Feeding

Regularly feeding your lawn with Scotts Turf Builder Lawn Food can help prevent yellow and purple nutsedge from taking over, promoting a thick, healthy turf. Feeding your lawn regularly gives it essential nutrients to thrive and protect it against weeds like nutsedge. Here are some tips on how regular feeding can benefit you:

  • Weeding Tips: Fertilizing regularly leads to thicker growth of desired plants, crowding out unwanted weeds like nutsedge.
  • Mulching Practices: Applying organic mulch around trees and shrubs, plus natural solutions like compost or peat moss, make it hard for nutgrass tubers to grow due to lack of sunlight and moisture retention.
  • Natural Solutions & Lawn Fertilizers: Using natural products like corn gluten meal or herbicide-free weed killers can kill existing nutgrasses and prevent future infestations. Plant Protection magazine (2016. has proven this.

By using these methods alongside regular fertilization practices, you can keep your yard looking great without worry about yellow or purple nutsedge. This opens up the next step – exploring ways to ensure our outdoor spaces remain free from nuisance plants throughout the year.

Scotts Turf Builder Triple Action

Boost your lawn’s defenses against yellow nutsedge with Scotts Turf Builder Triple Action, which can prevent it up to 6 weeks when seeding a new lawn in the North. Prepare and aerate the soil properly first with composting methods and ground covers or shrub plantings to crowd out any emerging nutsedge tubers. Herbicide application such as Bonide Sedge Ender must be done carefully according to directions on the product label – sometimes more than one treatment is necessary – for it to work effectively.

Combine these strategies with regular feeding from Scotts products like their Turf Builder Lawn Food, and you’ll have strong chances of keeping yellow nutgrass away from your lawn!

Identify and Kill Weeds

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Learning to identify and eradicate yellow nutsedge is key for keeping your lawn healthy – a stitch in time saves nine. There are two common species: Yellow and Purple. Nutsedge prefers wet, poorly drained soil, so ensure your lawn has proper irrigation. A well-fed lawn can crowd out many weed species. Fertilizer choice, mulching tips, and planting selection can help reduce nutgrass population. Soil test regularly, as excess nitrogen can encourage nutgrass growth.

Well-maintained Lawn

A well-maintained lawn is a key part of preventing and controlling nutgrass, as it helps crowd out the weed. To achieve this, fertilizing strategies should be implemented to provide necessary nutrients for healthy turf growth. Mulching techniques can also help retain moisture in hot weather and prevent nutsedge from germinating their tiniest baby nutlets.

Proper irrigation systems are essential for providing adequate water to your grass without encouraging weeds like yellow or purple nutsedge that thrive in moist soil conditions with poor drainage–both common problems associated with the over 600 species found within the nutsedge genus.

Additionally, pre emergent herbicides may be used when needed but need to contain low quality ingredients so as not to damage your existing lawn; however using these products alone won’t protect against all types of weeds such as those included in Nutsedges’ vast family tree!

Lastly, mowing at proper height is one more way you can discourage weed infestation because it allows desirable grasses an opportunity higher than most competing plants including Nutsedges’.

Thus, by following these simple steps you’ll have a better chance of achieving a lush green landscape while protecting yourself from pesky invaders!

Discouraging Weeds Guide

You can easily discourage weeds like nutsedge from taking over your lawn with simple steps. Proper mowing and fertilizing can help maintain a healthy, green landscape that’s up to 10 times thicker than an unmaintained lawn. Set the mower at its highest settings and water judiciously.

Mulching with black polyethylene plastic or other materials will reduce new plantlets of the nutsedge genus following spring. Soil aeration for better drainage, adding compost to improve soil fertility, or herbicide use for more severe infestations are all part of regular maintenance.

Identify weeds by their appearance before implementing any control methods, so they don’t mistakenly get eliminated with desirable plants. Regular feeding helps keep weeds away from having enough nutrients and promotes a lush looking lawn all year round.

Seasonal Guide

Follow a seasonal guide to achieve a lush lawn that will effectively crowd out weeds like nutsedge. In spring, hand weed to remove tubers before they spread, and lay down mulch to keep soil dry. In summer, herbicide spraying is an option, but it may take multiple applications over time for it to work. Regular soil testing and adding compost will provide lawns with necessary nutrients, preventing nutgrass growth. With proper care throughout the year, you can keep your landscape free from these weeds without spending much money or effort.

Repairing and Seeding Bare Patches

Take control of your lawn by repairing and seeding those bare patches to help prevent nutgrass from taking over. Fertilizing, mulching, shade tolerance, and natural solutions for drought resistance are all important. Nutsedge is a much more problematic weed than grasses – the purple species of yellow nutsedge being one of the most stubborn. Low-growing ground covers can be beneficial; they reduce soil erosion and provide animal feed while competing with nutgrass for resources like water and sunlight. Proper maintenance gives you a better chance at outcompeting this weed before it takes over.

Contractions can help you outcompete nutgrass. Fertilizing, mulching, and shade tolerance are important. Ground covers reduce erosion and provide food. With proper maintenance, you’ll have a better chance at success.

Pests in Gardens and Landscapes

Pests in Gardens and Landscapes
You can combat pests in gardens and landscapes by creating a healthy environment. This discourages their growth and provides an inhospitable habitat. With lush lawns and well-maintained plants, you can keep your landscape free of nuisance weeds like nutsedge.

Consider the following:

  1. Use natural predators, such as nematodes, to control insects without insecticides.
  2. Make soil amendments to improve drainage or aeration, so weeds are less likely to take over.
  3. Mulch around plants to keep moisture levels consistent and prevent weed seeds from germinating.
  4. Plant cover crops to prevent light from reaching newer sprouts of much more problematic weed species, such as nutsedge.

By utilizing these strategies, you can effectively reduce the spread of undesirable plant species like nutsedge in your garden or landscape. You won’t have to resort to nonselective postemergent herbicides for control.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How long will it take to kill nutsedge?

Killing nutsedge can be a long process, but with the right mulching techniques, cultural practices and soil amendments you can get complete control of this hard-to-control weed.

A nonselective postemergent herbicide is also an option for larger infestations or if you need fast results. When used in combination with other strategies such as mulching and amending the soil, it’ll help to prevent any regrowth of perennial plants while providing an added benefit of better moisture retention in your lawn.

With all these strategies combined, killing nutsedge shouldn’t take more than a few weeks, depending on the size and severity of your infestation.

What is the best way to get rid of nutsedge without using herbicides?

Getting rid of nutsedge without using herbicides is a lot of work, but can be done with the right techniques. Mulching, organic fertilizers and beneficial insects are all great. Companion planting and cover crops also provide effective control if implemented correctly. Ornamental plantings such as shrubs or flowers can help block out light from germinating nutsedge seeds. Collected material like grass clippings or straw offers an additional layer of protection when used in proper amounts throughout the year.

With patience and dedication, you can get rid of this pesky problem for good!

Are there any natural ways to prevent nutsedge from growing?

You may be looking for organic alternatives to chemical treatments or nonselective postemergent herbicides when dealing with nutsedge. Nutsedge is a major problem in many lawns and can quickly take over if not controlled. It has yellow-green leaves and the spiky head is either purple or yellow – though it’s not technically a grass, but rather a sedge!

Fortunately, there are several natural ways to prevent its growth without using chemicals:

Mulch benefits from adding soil nutrients, which helps crowd out weeds. Applying pre emergent herbicide before the start of summer will slow down germination. Corn gluten meal can also help prevent seeds from germinating.

Timely watering while avoiding overwatering can cause single tuber forms of nutsedge to die back, as well as encouraging darker leaves on desired plants.

Is nutsedge a problem in all climates?

Nutsedge is a much more problematic weed than other types of grasses and can be found in numerous climates. There are over 600 species belonging to the genus, with yellow and purple nutsedge being the most common.

To have good control of this weed, it’s important to ensure proper fertilizer selection, mulch application, watering techniques, soil testing, and adequate sunlight exposure for your lawn or garden area.

If you find yourself overrun with nutsedge, herbicides may be necessary – Bonide Sedge Ender being one of them. However, this should only be used when all other options have been exhausted, as it’s a nonselective postemergent herbicide that’ll kill any plant life it comes into contact with.

What is the best time of year to apply herbicides to kill nutsedge?

Managing nutsedge is an important part of keeping your lawn healthy and looking its best. The best time to apply herbicides for effective control of this weed is in the late spring or early summer when the red-brown scales on its stems are visible.

Herbicide application should be done as soon as possible after detecting it in turfgrass, with a follow-up application several weeks later if necessary.

Mulching benefits can help prevent further spread by blocking sunlight from reaching emerging seedlings, while fertilization schedules tailored to grass types help create dense stands that crowd out common weeds like yellow and purple nutsedge.


Nutsedge is a persistent and difficult weed to control. But with the right knowledge and techniques, it can be managed.

Understand the basics of nutsedge, improve soil conditions and remove nutlets to eradicate existing nutsedge and prevent future outbreaks.

Regular mowing, feeding and monitoring for weeds can help keep your lawn looking lush and healthy.

Take control of your lawn today and don’t let nutsedge get the best of you. Enjoy a weed-free lawn and landscape all season long.

Avatar for Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is a published author and software engineer and agriculture expert from the US. To date, he has helped thousands of people make their yards lush and thick.