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Killing Kikuyu out of your lawn in Winter is the best time to do it.

By Todd Layt
25 May 2011

Killing Kikuyu In Lawns
Winter is one of the best times to kill Kikuyu in your Buffalo, Couch, or Zoysia turf. Kikuyu is still active in many parts of Australia, whilst the other grass types almost stop growing. Kikuyu can quickly overtake a lawn if not kept in check. If you have even a trace of Kikuyu, you will need to do one of the steps below for the next couple of winters, till the Kikuyu is eradicated. If the Kikuyu gets too thick in Buffalo, the only way to get rid of it is kill the whole lawn and start again, so it is worth taking the following advice.

Kikuyu can be mass sprayed out of Zoysia or Couch by professionals, with specialist chemicals, but this is not possible with Buffalo turf. If you are a commercial lawn maintenance contractor, then the best chemical to use is DSMA to take out Kikuyu in Couch and Zoysia. It will often take a few applications, over a few months. It’s not a one spray option. A new herbicide called Tribute will also be launched soon, and at a recent seminar I heard that this used in combination with DSMA has even better results taking out Kikuyu. They sprayed with DSMA first, then followed up later with two applications a few weeks apart of Tribute. I am not sure when the use for this will be on the label, but it is worth waiting for, because the correct application and combination increased the kill of Kikuyu to 98%.

In Buffalo, the only answer is spot killing Kikuyu with Round Up. That means you can only get the Round Up on the plant you want to kill, and must not get any on the lawn you want to keep. There are three ways to do this ( Note this can also be done for Couch and Zoysia turf);

Spray the spot where the Kikuyu is, knowing the patch that gets the Round Up on it will die. This will kill the Kikuyu, but also some of the good guy grass around it. The disadvantage to this is you will have large dead spots till the lawn regrows, and that can take some time in winter. Probably better to wait till early Spring to do this.
In Winter, after letting the Kikuyu grow taller for three weeks with no mowing, a better solution is to paint the Kikuyu with a paint brush, making sure you get none on the grass underneath. The best way is to get a piece of cardboard, and put it under the Kikuyu, and paint the Kikuyu with Round Up. The cardboard will stop the Round Up getting on any of the Buffalo lawn. You may need to do this again in 3 weeks, as some Kikuyu may be missed.
Again after letting the Kikuyu get taller than the rest of the lawn for 3 to 4 weeks, grab the runner in your hand, and inject Round Up with a needle into the runner of the Kikuyu. Make sure you DO NOT stab or inject yourself. Inject each runner in a few spots. You may need to do this again in 3 weeks, as some Kikuyu may be missed. The advantage of this is that you absolutely get none on any of the desired lawn.




If there is too much Kikuyu, the whole Buffalo lawn may need to be killed, and new turf laid


~ both injection and painting methods worked equally as well and this Buffalo lawn is now completely free of Kikuyu, and will fully recover once the warmer weather of spring arrives...

Killing Kikuyu Grass

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BIO: Todd Layt ~ Australia's Lawn Care Expert
Lawn Care Expert

It is with gratitude that I welcome Todd Layt as a Special Guest Contributor to The Lawn Guide as Australia's Lawn Care Expert.

Todd's 35 years of experience with lawns began in the 70's when as a young lad, he would help his dad harvest turf on the family farm with a walk behind Ryan Turf Cutter. This love of lawns has continued throughout Todd's life when in the 1980's he was manager of Australia's largest turf farm, and then going into business for himself starting his own turf farm called Abulk Turf.

These days, Todd is most highly regarded as the breeder of the Premium turf variety Sapphire Soft Leaf Buffalo (the world's finest leaf and most shade tolerant Buffalo grass), and the breeder of Australia's first native Zoysia lawn called Nara Native Turf, as well as being the breeder of many popular water-wise plants in Australia.

Todd now heads up Ozbreed, who promote the world's best selling and Australia's lowest maintenance Soft Buffalo lawn… Palmetto Soft Leaf Buffalo, as well as the extremely hardy fine leaf Empire Zoysia.

And if that wasn't enough, Todd Layt is easily Australia's most proficient lawn care author, writing for many lawn industry magazines and online lawn care resources which share honest lawn care information with Australian homeowners and turf professionals alike.

I also acknowledge that the highest quality lawns which Todd Layt promotes through Ozbreed are advertised on The Lawn Guide.

I welcome Todd Layt as Australia's Lawn Care Expert on The Lawn Guide.

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