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The Lawn Guide
Invading Grass
Couch Invading Buffalo

Killing An Invading Grass Species

With so many different lawn varieties being available, sometimes our lawns can become invaded by another unwanted grass variety. For many, it can become annoying and aesthetically ugly to look at when our well cared for lawn is suddenly overtaken.


How It Occurs

Lawn invasion can occur from several sources:


  • Lawn Seeds: seeds that are brought onto the properties from other lawn varieties, seed travel occurs by wind, bird waste, the fur of animals, and clothing of people.
  • A Prior Lawn: for newly laid lawns, the previous lawn may not have been killed off properly prior to the laying of the new lawn, and begins to re-emerge from its runners or seeds.
  • A Neighbouring Lawn: A neighbours lawn may be creeping into your lawn.

Removing or Killing The Invading Grass

Pulling The Lawn:
If the lawn invasion is minor, then pulling the invading grass species out by hand may the the easiest and most effective form of removal.


Buffalo Invaders:
The Buffalo lawn is very susceptible to damage or death from "Weed and Feed" applications, and selective Broad Leaf Herbicides. If your invading grass is a Buffalo, then an application of a Broad Leaf Herbicide may very well kill the Buffalo, plus any weeds, while leaving your lawn variety without damage. This can work a treat if your wanted lawn is a variety like Couch or Zoysia.


Kikuyu Invading Other Lawns
Kikuyu is often responsible for invading other grasses. Kikuyu is a very rigourous grass and very fast growing, which is most easily dispersed by the wind blowing its fine seeds into neighbouring lawns from council parks and other yards using this grass. Kikuyu invading Buffalo is most often a problem as this is due to both grasses having a similar leaf width, which allows the Kikuyu to easily hide in the Buffalo for a long time before it is noticed and dealt with by the homeowner, and by this time half the lawn may be Kikuyu.


Paintbrush Glyphosate Poisoning:
This method involves selectively painting the invading lawn variety with Glyphosate Poison.

The first step is to stop any mowing and lawn care for several weeks and allow the Kikuyu lawn to grow high, the 2 different lawn types should now be easily distinguished from each other.

Prepare a Glyphosate mixture in an open topped container that won't easily tip over when placed on the ground. Some newspaper or other protective layer under the container is also a good idea to protect the lawn from any accidental spillage of the herbicide.

You also need a paintbrush, up to 30 mm wide should be OK, and some rubber gloves.

Wearing rubber gloves, separate the unwanted lawn variety by hand, and paint the long leaves of the invader with the Glyphosate mixture.


WARNING:
Glyphosate is a NON SELECTIVE herbicide, it will kill any type of plant or lawn variety it comes into contact with. Be careful not to touch any of the wanted lawn with the Glyphosate mixture.


Results should be seen within 1 or 2 weeks. As the unwanted lawn begins to die off, check for any of the invading species which is still healthy and may have been missed with the poisoning. Go back over and re-paint any missed parts of the invading grass.

The lawn should be OK to begin mowing within 2 weeks, as the poison would have worked its way through the unwanted lawn.


Important Lawn Care Tip
Discard lawn clippings from the first 2 - 3 lawn mowings into the rubbish bin only, do not put them into a recycling bin, a compost pile or a garden bed.


As normal lawn mowing and lawn care continues, any new signs of the invading lawn species should be hand pulled or painted again while the invasion is minimal, and without having to start the full treatment from the beginning again.





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