how to treat nutsedge

bettyfbJuly 10, 2009


I had Nutsedge in my Fescue lawn for years as well as Brown Patch Disease. Thanks to advice from Bill in San Antonio, this year I have no Brown Patch and no Nutsedge. I have been putting on 50 pounds of Cornmeal monthly since last March on my 3,000 sq foot lawn and also applying Dried Molasses. I believe the Dried Molasses has stopped the Nutsedge, and it is so amazing as we have had a lot of rain since early spring and that usually makes the Nutsedge much worse. The lawn is still green and growing well for mid summer. I am so amazed!!!!! Going to cut the grass again right now.


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What controls the nut sedge, the cornmeal or molasses? If the latter, where can I buy dry molasses? Would regular molasses work as well?

    Bookmark   July 13, 2009 at 12:19AM
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Hi stan6,

It is the molasses. I have posted a link from the Dirt Doctor that describes using the liquid molasses. I just do not like to fool with mixing it. I just put the dried molasses in a bucket and sling it all over the lawn. The good guys just love it and it makes them really reproduce. Just my guess, I think the fact that I started applying the dried molasses in March--was helpful because the good guys were eating the tiny bulbs of the nutsedge before they got really big. To me it is amazing, I had so much nutsedge for over 10 years and now I can pull maybe 10 out of the lawn and they are in the area, where I did not apply dried molasses--because there are certain areas of my lawn that never get Brown Patch Disease, so that area was not treated with Corn Meal or Molasses--so that spot has some Nutsedge in it. I have been really good about putting down CornMeal and Molasses every 3- 4 weeks--50 pounds of each for my 3,000sq foot lawn and no disease and no Nutsedge. The organic solutions do work, but I am not telling you that if you have Nutsedge in full force right now that you will wipe it all out with Molasses--my guess is it will not be as effective as what I did, starting in March. And on top of that we have had a lot of rain and that usually makes the Nutsedge really multiply--not this year. I purchased Dried Molasses from a feed store in downtown Louisville, and I think it was around $15 for 50 pounds. It would be a lot cheaper to buy unsulfured molasses at Walmart, I guess but I just prefer to do it the really fast way--sling the Dried Molasses on the lawn and it takes me 20 minutes to do the whole lawn and I just love the smell!!!! I then water it in.


Here is a link that might be useful: Nutgsedge Control

    Bookmark   July 14, 2009 at 6:27AM
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Betty, thanks for the tip. I also have a bad nutsedge problem...less this year. I have used molasses 2-3 times this spring and maybe that helped somewhat. Here's a tip for you, since you hate the sticky, oosey qualities of molasses: I pour 3-4 oz of liquid unsulphured molasses in a plastic container such as a milk jug. I have a multi-head hose sprayer that I turn on the "jet" setting. I zap the molasses in the jug and it immediately disperses the gooey stuff and it combines with the water. I pour the molasses/water into a hose end Ortho sprayer and it spreads nicely. No clogging the sprayer.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2009 at 11:26AM
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Where can I buy cornmeal in middle TN? I found a place that sells ground corn (finer than cracked corn). Is this just as effective for disease? What kind of place sells cornmeal? What is it used for besides on lawns? I have serious lawn disease problems. Need help! Thanks

    Bookmark   August 3, 2010 at 6:07PM
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Since plant diseases are not a normal thing for planta to have those with continuous disease problems need to take a good look at the soil those plants are growing in to see what the problme is. simply spending large sums of money to try and control plant diseases, as "conventional" gardeners do, is not the correct solution.
Most fungal disease are a result of a too wet soil, or growing conditions.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2010 at 7:34AM
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stan6 I live in Nashville and get my corn meal gluten from a garden center on Murfreesboro pike in Antioch.Called All Natural Lawns and Landscape. They have 3 sizes of bags.All they sell is organics.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2010 at 5:27PM
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dchall_san_antonio(8 San Antonio)

hans63 and stan6: Corn meal and corn gluten meal are two different things. Corn meal is ground corn. It is larger pieces than flour but much smaller than cracked corn. Corn meal is useful as a low protein fertilizer and fungus control. Corn gluten meal is what is left after the wet milling process has stripped away most of the carbohydrates. What is left is a very high protein meal (deep yellow dust). Corn gluten meal is useful as a strong organic fertilizer and possibly as a preemergent weed preventer.

Nutsedge is a swamp grass that really thrives best in sunny areas that are soggy or otherwise too wet. If you have a low lying area in the middle of your lawn, it is likely that the best stand of nutgrass is growing there. I have also seen it growing in higher ground areas where the underlying soil must be holding moisture better than surrounding areas. For example if you have filled a hole in your clay type soil with sand, then the clay will act like a bucket to hold the moisture and keep it wet longer.

It is interesting to read about the use of "dried" molasses to control nutgrass. Although I am the moderator on the Dirt Doctor lawn forum, I often question his lawn advice. Dry molasses seems to be a gimmick to me; however, there are getting to be more testimonials to the effectiveness of dried molasses. I can't ignore them, but I still question them. I don't see testimonials for wet molasses sprayed on nutgrass. (dry molasses consists of 35 pounds of rice hulls or other organic dregs drenched in 15 pounds of wet molasses). In fact I see people using wet molasses and reporting no difference. Why would dry work better than wet??? For that matter why would molasses work at all? Are there other factors involved. Could there be more shade as time marches on? Could the wet sprayers be giving up too soon? I don't know but I'm watching this topic carefully.

I have sprayed full strength (thick) molasses through my Ortho sprayer by first removing the screen at the bottom of the down tube. I am now mixing it 50/50 with milk which has the effect of diluting it, but it can be done without clogging either way.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2010 at 9:59AM
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