Maintaining a yard in a desert climate isn’t easy. Weeds grow and flourish in Fall and Spring, but remain an issue year-round. The lack of moisture and nourishing soil makes growing vegetables or grass difficult, but weeds still find a way to survive! Many homeowners turn to xeriscape to avoid some of the difficulties of traditional gardening and lawn care. But even with a xeriscaped landscape, you may have to deal with weeds, leading you to need professional weed control.
What is Weed Control?
With our warm weather year-round, it’s basically barefoot weather all the time. And, if you’ve ever walked barefoot through your grass and accidentally stepped on a weed, you might have been in for a surprise. Most of the weeds that grow in Arizona have thorns that can hurt you if you step on them. Weed control is also for aesthetic reasons. Do you really want dandelions popping up as soon as you cut your grass?
Traditional Weed Control Doesn’t Work on Grass
Typical weed control in Arizona involves using a combination of pre-emergent and post-emergent herbicides. When a pre-emergent herbicide is applied, the weed control technician is targeting weeds that haven’t germinated yet, attacking them before they even have the chance to grow. When a post-emergent herbicide is applied, the weed control technician is attempting to kill weeds that have already grown. While these techniques are great for desert landscaping, grass lawns need a little more TLC.
There are a couple of reasons that different services are needed for grass landscaping versus desert landscapes because:
- The weeds are different.
- Herbicides used on desert landscapes are often harmful to grass plants.
- The timing of treatments can differ, and grass plant growth can be stunted if treatments are applied at the wrong time.
Weed Control is a Science
Weeds can grow through rocks and desired foliage, and it can be tough to get rid of all your weeds. without killing your other flora in your garden. TV commercials, shows, and movies make having a beautiful, manicured lawn without weeds look easy! DIY solutions with pre-mixed chemicals are supposed to work miracles on your weed issues, but they typically just kill everything in sight. Weeds control in Arizona is much more complicated than that and may require multiple treatment methods.
What is Xeriscaping?
Xeriscaping or xerogardening is a simple idea. The word comes from a Greek word meaning “dry” combined with the word “landscaping”. The homeowner plans and plants his landscape in a way that demands the least use of supplemental irrigation and makes the most of hardy native plants.
Because it minimized your water usage, this method of landscape design is a good idea for desert climes like Phoenix. Pest control is also aided by this method. Plants used in xeriscaping typically have a different structure than traditional shrubbery. They leave more room around the foundation for your Phoenix exterminator to monitor and prevent pest activity. It leaves less moisture to encourage bug to set up housekeeping as well.
Weed Control for Xeriscaping
Just because a property is xeriscaped doesn’t mean it won’t have weeds. Weed seeds can lie dormant for quite a while until conditions are just right to germinate and grow. Even in arid Phoenix, weed control measures should still be taken. Here are a few ways to keep your desert area landscaping healthy.
- Pre-emergent weed control. This type of treatment kills weeds before they grow. Be cautious and treat a small test patch first. Some pre-emergent agents can stain rocks, which are often a feature in desert landscapes. They may also require up to ½ inch of water to penetrate the soil effectively.
- Post-emergent weed control. You can also apply treatments after weeds begin to show. Again, use caution when applying these treatments yourself. They are just as lethal to your desirable landscaping plans as they are to weeds. You may need to reapply these treatments until the weeds are completely dead.
- Manual methods. If you are up for a little manual labor, you can always pull weeds by hand. Use gloves to protect your hands in case the weeds have thorns or are particularly tough-stemmed. Be sure to pull up as much of the root as possible to prevent regrowth.
Getting rid of weeds in a desert landscape takes some care and attention, but it is worth it. A xeriscaped yard can be an interesting and hardy garden that is delightfully low-maintenance as well.
Steps to a Healthier, Weed-Free Lawn
- Water your grass on a regular basis: Your lawn should consist of weed-free, healthy turf no matter the species. If, however, your lawn is already full of weeds you might want to have weed control services performed in the turf to remove all the broadleaf weeds like dandelions, bur clover, thistle, and all the thorny species of broadleaf plants that love to invade our warm-season turfgrasses. Some unwanted grasses might be able to be controlled as well, but unwanted broadleaf weed in turf is actually fairly easy to control. This will help you avoid needing to reseed or replant your yard to bring it to a beautiful and pristine look. Pulling the weeds will generally only encourage more weed growth by breaking the root systems and generating new growth from those points in the rhizomes.
- Fertilization: To keep weeds from growing, you should fertilize on a regular basis. This task will also strengthen your turf and suffocate the broadleaf weed out of the healthy patch of grass.
- Weed Removal: If you have some stubborn weeds, you can pull them out by hand. But, it is vital to make sure that you pull them out by their roots. Leaving the roots will not help, but only hinder your efforts as the weed comes back again.
- Stop Flowering Weeds: You need to make sure that you remove the weeds before they flower. If you let them flower, the flowers will then turn to seed, and voila – more weeds are surely going to propagate when all the new seeds hit the soil.
- Watch your neighbor’s yard: If they are not caring for their yard and it is always overtaken by weeds then you should put up a solid fence. A solid fence will reduce the chances of their weeds also taking over your yard despite your best efforts. This is always a tough situation, and sometimes having a weed control company can help, because we tend to knock on the neighbors’ doors and ask them if they would like a weed treatment too! This way you don’t have to be upset or embarrassed to speak to the neighbors about their nasty weeds.
Maintain Your Beautiful Desert Lawn
If DIY weed control isn’t working for you, or you’re tired of putting hours into weeding and treating your lawn just for them to pop back up, contact the team at Invader! Our TurfCare™ program will help you keep and care for your field of dreams, a beautiful yard, with soft wonderful green grass. Start this program in early May to clean up your lawn, get rid of unwanted weeds, especially the ones with stickers and thorns, but also the puffy white and yellow dot dandelions that break the desired sea of green that every lawn owner wants to see, feel and enjoy.
Our TurfCare™ weed control in Phoenix and the surrounding areas can make your lawn something you want to enjoy. When you choose Invader, you’ll get a program that:
- Starts with a thorough inspection so you know what you’re working with.
- Includes a written proposal on how we’ll eradicate your weed problem.
- Includes pre-emergent herbicides to kill weeds before they grow.
- Includes post-emergent herbicides to kill any weeds that may have grown in your yard.
- Comes with guaranteed services so you don’t have to worry about weeds in your yard.