En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?


Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Tuesday - March 20, 2012

From: dallas, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Turf, Grasses or Grass-like
Title: Need help with lawn that was sodded with Buffalo Grass in Dallas, TX.
Answered by: Jimmy Mills


I had buffalo sod put down last March. It greened up beautifully until weeds just about covered it up. I tried hand pulling. My landscaper showed up with something that appeared to damage the buffalo grass as much as the weeds. Continued hand weeding. This spring I have massive weeds again. There is still some buffalo grass there, but it will be completely eradicated if I do not find something to kill the unwanted grass and weeds. apprx 2000 sq feet of sod. Help! What can I put on it.


Mr. Smarty Plants is sorry to hear you are having trouble with your Buffalo Grass. It holds promise for an eco-friendly  lawn when the installation is successful.

You didn’t mention the names of the weeds you are battling, so without that information, I am at a loss as what to recommend to put on it. I suggest that you contact the folks at the Dallas County office of Texas AgriLife Extension who can look at the lawn, identify the weeds, and suggest possible treatments. In addition, you can get  more information from our How to Article on the planting and care of Buffalo Grass.

Dr. Mark Simmons, the Director of our Ecosystem Design Group, offers these observations on Buffalo Grass sod:

1. sod often is a great way to import weeds (particularly nut sedge)

2. Sod is usually installed on poorly prepared ground which leads to buffalo turf which is weed prone

3. Weeds will proliferate if buffalo is mowed too short. or too much fertilizer is used


More Grasses or Grass-like Questions

Turf for high-traffic area in Austin
April 21, 2012 - I am building a large soccer field at my preschool in Austin, TX in a full sun area. What type of grass would be best for me to use given that it will be a very high-traffic area with lots of direct ...
view the full question and answer

Erosion control in Santaquin UT
August 11, 2009 - I have a hill in my backyard; it is about 40 ft tall and about 80 ft wide. It is probably a 1.5 to 1 slope ratio. I am going to be landscaping my back yard and have top soil put on the hill as well. S...
view the full question and answer

Strip Groundcover for Austin, TX
February 19, 2015 - I live in a condo in Austin (near N Lamar and North Loop), and am on the HOA board. There is a small strip of land along the back of the units, used mostly for access for maintenance - it ranges from ...
view the full question and answer

Plants for a pool fence in Ohio
October 28, 2010 - I live in Ohio and have a pool with a white vinyl fence. Each year I plant sunflowers around it, but they are so messy when the birds/bees find them. Previously I planted castor beans, however, they...
view the full question and answer

Practicality of Cedar Elm and buffalo grass in clay soil in East Texas
July 31, 2007 - Dear Mr. Smarty Pants, I live in Katy Texas on what used to be a rice field. The soil either has a lot of clay in it or in places is just solid clay. Will any kind of buffalo grass grow here? I'v...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center