Every homeowner takes great pride in how their estate looks, and what better scene to welcome a guest than a perfectly trimmed, green lawn in front of a clean facade? Well, even if it wasn’t for the painstaking work of maintaining grass at an even level, trimming bushes and trees, and painting fences – another problem regularly occurs: weeds.
They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, some rare and easy to take care of, others more persistent, while a few are a reoccurring problem that requires a special approach to solving. Bluegrass, also known as Poa annua, does nothing else but leaves ugly patches on an otherwise perfect lawn and needs to be taken care of.
Weeds And Worries
What makes a certain plant a weed is, first and foremost, semantics. What is a lovely flower for some is an unneeded weed for others. Many plants with medicinal properties, collected for traditional medicine or grown for the pharmaceutical industry, are destroyed if they were not planned for another environment. Crop fields are a prime example of that – huge areas of a single plant culture, where any other species is unwelcomed by the farmer.
The question of lawns is a bit different, of course. Except for the practical purpose of leading away natural drainage from a house, lawns have a purely aesthetic purpose. There is something simply mesmerizing about a patch of uniform green grass that other decorations just don’t accomplish. But to maintain such an environment, one must declare everything that ruins the green scenery – a weed.
Bluegrass on Green Lawns
The benign plant, usually called bluegrass, is one such culprit. With its distinctive light-colored surface, it can be very noticeable on a dark-green lawn and can cause other problems. You should know that Poa Annua, like most weeds, spreads very quickly compared to regular, shorter grass and can later leave brown, or even bald, patches where it grew. To stop this from happening, one should take care of the weed as soon as it appears.
This grass spreads by creating a very large number of seeds that fall from it in early summer, contaminating the ground around it, from where it can sprout the next year when the temperatures rise again. Trying to plow the earth and sow new grass instead will not solve the problem, as the seeds of bluegrass will already be in the ground.
The first thing that comes to mind when dealing with weeds is – weed whacking. Any process that physically takes down weed could be put under this term, though today, it usually means using a grass trimmer to cut any higher plants down. While this is a very simple solution and does work to an extent, a few things make it less than ideal.
First, deciding that cutting bluegrass will solve the trick means that it is already there and tall enough to be noticeable. Cutting it down to the level of the rest of the lawn will make the whole thing more uniform but will still leave different colored patches here and there. Plus, it does not get rid of the weed; it just slows it down.
A Modern Approach
But don’t despair; today we have ways of dealing with that, while not foolproof, are much more effective than simply cutting it down. Herbicides, chemicals designed to kill specific plants, are what get the job done though caution is advised! While herbicides are made to directly affect unwanted plants in several ways, they can still be harmful to animals and humans, so use them carefully.
Best to see with your local pharmacy or gardening shop, what brands target bluegrass directly, or what do the least damage to other types of, preferable, turfgrass. Herbicides are easy to use, requiring only a small container and a hand-held pump to spray the solution on the desired surface.
Like with any lawn – regular maintenance is key. During the summer, when grass grows the quickest, you need to mow it at least weekly, and then you will see if there are any foreign plants present. A single grass here and there can simply be pulled out when it is young, but an infestation is another matter and requires a great deal more work.
So, what any homeowner ought to do, if they want their home to shine, is get to know the weed and its weaknesses and work against them in the most efficient way possible, in this never-ending struggle of man versus nature.