Best weed blocking perennials

KevinMcdSeptember 9, 2012

I have a big problem with nutgrass (and bermuda grass) in one of my flowerbeds. I know the best control would be to completely rebuild the bed from scratch, but that would take hours and hours of work.

In my opinion my best option (which is very limited as a mostly weekend gardener) would be to plant perennials (or annuals) that would block the weeds seed from germinating in the spring.

Can anyone give me some ideas of attractive, low growing, plants that will live through winter, without dying back, that would serve this purpose? I have a pretty large sunny area to fill in and I live in Dickinson Tx (Galveston County).

I would assume if I wanted to grow annuals I would have to plant them now for them to get mature enough to block the seed germination.

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debndal(8a DFW, TX)

Both are perennial, so blocking any seeds will not eradicate an established infestation. I have used broadleaf weedkiller, yes, broadleaf, on the nutsedge with pretty good success, but it took several applications to get it gone. I haven't found anything that works well on bermuda grass, so I just hand pull it frequently to keep it from taking over. Hope someone else has an idea for the Bermuda. I'll be watching this thread for tips too.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2012 at 9:20PM
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roselee z8b S.W. Texas

Deb is right about them being perennial. However, I have good success with killing Burmuda with Ortho's Grass-B-Gone. What's nice about it is that you can spray it on broad leaf plants and it doesn't affect them. It takes two or three weeks for the grass to die so you may think it is not working, but it is.

Good to know that broadleaf weedkiller will work on nutsedge. Also there is a product called 'Manage' that is especially formulated to kill nutsedge.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2012 at 9:36PM
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carrie751(z7/8 TX)

I use Grass B Gone as well, Roselee, and find it so much easier that trying to dig and pull the Bermuda, which is totally ineffective anyway.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2012 at 10:39PM
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Thanks so much for your suggestions. I hate using weed killer for fear of killing my plants. But I guess sometimes that's the only option. I'll try the products you all have suggested and hopefully these plagues will be gone in a few weeks or at least be substantially under control.
Thanks again

    Bookmark   September 10, 2012 at 5:13AM
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Great thread. I don't know that a new bed would help. I have nutsedge the most in my raised beds which was built a couple years ago.
I was searching online yesterday to find a way to kill it. The things listed were Sedgehammer, Pennant and Manage.
Roselee, do you know where to buy the Manage?

    Bookmark   September 10, 2012 at 8:37AM
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roselee z8b S.W. Texas

I looked at my bottle and the nutgrass product I have is 'IMAGE', not Manage. I bought it in the concentrate form quite a few years ago at Gardenville here in San Antonio. Even though it's 10 years old it still works.

I looked on line and saw that both Lowes and Home Depo offer Image. Also it can be ordered from Amazon. It's probably available at local garden centers, too. It works, but you have to use it repeatly to kill all the corms/nuts it grows from.

Here is a link that might be useful: Ortho Max Nutsedge Killer on Amazon ...

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 8:21AM
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If you use Image, read the label closely for what else it kills. I about wiped out a bed of cannas when I just wanted to get rid of the nutgrass.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 1:41PM
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I use Grass B Gone on bermuda too.

The good thing about nutsedge is that it is easy to pull when the ground is saturated. I don't think there is any plant that will block plants that are already established. The best you can do is get rid of the weeds around your plants and use a heavy cardboard or newspaper layers under some mulch.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 2:49PM
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tx_ag_95(7/8 Lewisville)

Ah, but Marti, the problem with pulling nutsedge is that you typically don't get all of the roots, so it comes back. Truly, the only way to get rid of it permanently is to spray (and I hate spraying!), just like Bermuda.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 12:04PM
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