Seed Heads

produced naturally by all turfgrasses

Seed Heads

All seed grass varieties used in the UK will form seed-heads, this is part of their natural process.

SEED HEAD OVERVIEW

Whilst seed heads can’t be avoided, our treatment programme combined with regular cutting and a sharp mower blade sharp will keep your lawn healthy.

Whilst they can’t be avoided, keeping your mower blade sharp combined with regular cutting and our treatment programme will keep your lawn healthy.

All seed grass varieties used in the UK will form seed-heads, the seeds are produced in a seed-head. This is part of their natural process. Seeds are required for grass plants to propagate and spread.

Seed Heads in lawn

Some customers confuse seed-heads with weeds. Please do not be alarmed if you have seed-heads in your turf. It is simply the grass reproducing in it’s natural process.

During spring, the seed heads emerge from the grass plants and stand their heads just above the leaves. Some grasses will only form seed-heads on stems that are over 100mm tall. Therefore, if you mow your lawn very short you will never see them.

Other grasses, such as bentgrass (used on golf greens) and some rye grasses will form seed-heads on stems that are only approximately 50mm tall. When a turfgrass is producing seed-heads, sometimes it will not cut very neatly when mowed. The stem of a seed-head is quite tough and fibrous, meaning that they can be held upright, even in strong winds.

The period of time that seed-heads form can differ for each grass type, but in general they will last from a few weeks to approximately a month. After this period, the grass will revert to growing leaves and the lawn will improve again after cutting.

The exception to this is one particular grass weed called Annual Meadow Grass, which will continue to form seed-heads throughout most of the year. Annual Meadow Grass is very common across the UK.

How to manage your turf when it is forming seed heads:

  • The best advice is to mow often and use a sharp mower blade.
    Fertilise your turf properly. Properly fertilised turf will grow out of the seed head production stage rapidly, and the grass will be easier to mow neatly. Our fertiliser programme will speed up the finishing of the reproductive process
  • It is NOT recommended that you lower the height of your mower
  • If it is practical, remove the weed grass Annual Meadow grass by hand, remembering to take the roots as well.

Annual Meadow Grass & Control

Rake the lawn regularly before mowing in summer and autumn, using a spring-tine rake. This lifts up the stems so they are more easily cut by the mower. Do not rake vigorously in spring, as this is the time of year when new shoots of the preferred finer grasses are rooting into the soil. Disturbance of this rooting process could result in sparse turf that is more open to weed infestation.

If the infestation is extensive, control is much more difficult. We would suggest an careful application of a total systemic weedkiller e.g. Round Up Gel. This is ideal for this as it can be applied directly to the grass plant (Avoid using the Ready to Use Spray delivery format as any over spray will kill the desired grasses as well). Re seed as required afterwards.

Avoid frequent watering in dry summers, as meadow grass is shallow-rooting, so should be discouraged by drought
Feed the lawn annually to encourage the growth of desirable turf grasses.

Sources of further reference:

Rowlawn - Article january-2014/seed-heads-in-your-turf

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