What, When, Why, How of Sports Turf Weeds

picture of Khaki, Clover and Wire Grass

What type of weeds grow in sports fields?

There are 3 main categories of weeds that can grow in sports turf: Broadleaf weeds, Grass Weeds & Sedges.  These groups of species include Winter Growing Annuals, Summer Growing Annuals, Biennials and Perennials.


What species appear when?

Winter growing species include:  Clover, Bindii & Poa

Summer growing species include: Khaki weed, Crowsfoot, Summer Grass & Oxalis

Broadleaf Biennials (which appear over 2 seasons) include:  Flat weed, Dandelions, and Plantains

Perrenials (which can be short or long-lived) include: Pennyworts, Wire Grass, Sedges & Paspalum

Why do they grow?

Weeds can crop up for a number of reasons other than climate changes across seasons.  These include seed dispersal where seeds are brought into the site possibly from animals or those using the turfed surface.  Also, if turf is not healthy or is worn away, then bare spots appear and provide space for weeds to grow.  If weeds are not controlled properly and if a maintenance program is not planned and delivered weeds can overpower the desirable species within the turf.


How to reduce growth?

As with most things, prevention is better than cure!  Turf needs to be kept healthy to avoid disease.  If the correct irrigation, mowing and fertilisation program is planned and delivered accordingly, the desirable species will flourish.  It is also important to ensure strict hygiene measures are carried out including, cleaning down mowers.


How to control weed growth in 3 steps

1. Ensure you have a tailored weed control program.

2. Follow a strict pre-emergent herbicide program.

3. Keep turf healthy from a regular irrigation, mowing and fertilisation cycle.


To assist with when to treat the various weeds our Turf Services Manager created this calendar.  You can download a small file size calendar here. Contact Justin Sands justin.sands@technigro.com.au or call 1800 678 611

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