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?

Share

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
1 rating

Sunday - September 30, 2012

From: Lakeway, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Invasive Plants, Turf, Grasses or Grass-like
Title: Nutgrass in Lakeway TX Habiturf
Answered by: Brigid & Larry Larson

QUESTION:

I just installed a new septic system with drip field. Planted habiturf over the whole area. The habiturf is doing good, but I was away for a while and the nut grass has taken over several areas. It seem it will take days to hand pull it all, Any help PLEASE

ANSWER:

Sorry,  I did a survey to see if there was ever an answer other than "you just have to get down and pull it" – and it doesn’t look so.  Here is that survey of previous answers, and you’ll see a significant trend.

How to get rid of nut grass from San Antonio
Removing nut grass and wild strawberry in Vienna VA
Elimination of nutgrass
Elimination of nutgrass from native flower bed

It’s explained much better in these previous posts, but in essence the nutgrass propagation from rhizomes and nodules is so efficient that the only thing that really works is to keep pulling them up until the roots starve, it even shakes off the nastier pesticides that we don't recommend.  Since you let them get ahead – you’ll need to work a bit harder for a while until you’re in control again!

Mr Smarty Plants would come to Lakeway and give you some help, but Mrs Smarty Plants says he’s useless.  Just check out my facebook photos and you’ll see that pulling grass is not my forte.  You may consider using Mrs Smarty Plants’ Tom Sawyerish solution.  She invites a whole bunch of Wildflower friends [who have a strange concept of “fun”] over for a nutgrass pulling party.  Support them  with some cold drinks, music and maybe good food afterwards and you’ll find yourself in a much better position versus the nutgrass.  You might even offer a prize for “longest root”.  Doing this after the rain we are getting right now will make the soil looser and weeding should be a bit easier.

Here's some  wildflower pictures as we don't need to look at any more nutgrass!

 

From the Image Gallery


Eastern purple coneflower
Echinacea purpurea

Prairie lily
Cooperia pedunculata

Firewheel
Gaillardia pulchella

More Grasses or Grass-like Questions

Plants for a steep bank in Virginia
June 23, 2009 - I have a small yard with a 3 foot steep bank that I want to plant on. I am looking for fast growing ground cover. There is some shade but not a lot and has a southern exposure. Ground is a bit roug...
view the full question and answer

Burning back Gulf Muhly instead of trimming from San Antonio
December 19, 2011 - A few years ago I noticed that the Center burned back its Gulf Muhly rather than cutting it back. Did that study result in any conclusions or recommendations?
view the full question and answer

Plants for near a salt water swimming pool
April 01, 2009 - I need some suggestions of plants that will grow next to a public salt water swimming pool, located in Bossier City, Louisiana
view the full question and answer

Mowing frequency of native lawn from Georgetown TX
August 18, 2012 - I have a native grass and wildflower lawn. At what frequency and when should the lawn be mowed?
view the full question and answer

Ground cover for burned acreage in Bastrop, Texas
October 31, 2011 - The fire took 2/3 of the trees on my half acre in Bastrop County. It was mostly wild. What do I plant for ground cover? Do I plant native grass seed in fall? I want to keep it native as possible. ...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center