With the early spring we are enjoying here in Carolina, it’s more important than ever to have a timely pre-emergent herbicide applied to stop crabgrass and other summer annual weeds. Germination usually begins in late March to early April here in Carolina and on into April, May, and June. So as long as the pre-emergent is applied before then and watered into the soil, crabgrass should not germinate. Unless the weather turns cooler soon though, we’ll have early germination it appears.
There are differences in pre-emergent products, and there can be big differences in how and when those products are applied, that will greatly effect the results. At LawnAmerica we use the very best product available, prodiamine or Barricade, which is the trade name. We apply this between late January and late-March for our existing customers, at the rate of 28 oz. per acre, which will provide about 6-7 months of good crabgrass control according to the chart in this article. IF you have a fescue lawn, the Round 1 pre-emergent should last all season long, and break down by the time fescue seeding is done in fall.
Other lawn care companies in Carolina may apply a lesser rate of products, and apply them in what is called a “split application”, with some applied in their step 1, and the rest of it with their step 2 a few weeks later. Their customers are paying twice for what LawnAmerica does in ONE treatment! As long as Barricade is applied at the proper time, with the proper rates, by an experienced and good technician, one treatment is all you need.
All pre-emergents need to be watered into the soil to be be activated, so we’ll need help either from Mother Nature or from an irrigation system, which could be you with a water hose! The newer pre-emergents such as Barricade do not break down in the soil or leach out of the soil nearly as fast as older products, so that’s good. The biggest factor is still how and when they are applied as to why one lawn looks great, and another may have a crabgrass problem.