Seed Heads (AMG)
All seed grass varieties used in the UK will form seed-heads, this is part of their natural process.
SEED HEAD OVERVIEW
Annual Meadow Grass is a wild grass that is common throughout the UK. You’ll find it growing anywhere that a seed might land and germinate and frustratingly, in your lawn. Most of the year, you won’t know it’s there.
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.
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.
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.
Sources of further reference:
Rowlawn - Article january-2014/seed-heads-in-your-turf
AMG, Yorkshire Fog & Control
There are several different reasons for discoloured patches on a lawn.
- Animal urine
- Spillages (lawn mower fuel)
- Annual meadow grass
- Yorkshire Fog
How to get rid of weed grass
There is no selective herbicide that will kill AMG or Yorkshire Fog and leave your lawn grasses alone. The only way to remove these grasses is culturally.
It’s slow, but it does work, you can weed it out by hand. This could involve digging up each plant.
An annual autumn scarification with a fixed blade will slash through each plant. 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. You will expose areas of bare soil so it’s important to over seed the lawn otherwise its most likely to re appear. This approach will weaken the plant so that other lawn grasses can out-compete the weed grass.
If the infestation is extensive and the above sounds hard work, we would suggest a careful application of a total systemic weedkiller e.g. Round Up Gel, this is ideal 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.
Alternatively, you could learn how to disguise the plants, making them less noticeable.
How to hide weed grass
The secret to disguising those patches lie in excellent and regular lawn care. Here are some do's and dont's
Mow frequently, suggested twice per week, but keep the mower blades 4cm is a good height. This keeps the desirable grass species strong and healthy so that they can outcompete the undesirable grass. AMG grows quicker than lawn grasses, It’s not been bred to cope with regular mowing. It won’t do as well in a regularly maintained lawn as it might where mowing is sporadic.
Feed your lawn. If you starve weed grasses it will do what all plants do when they’re stressed. Turn pale and try to set seed before the mother plant dies. Keep the whole lawn strong and healthy with a manageable feeding routine.
Mowing, use your mower to create patterns in the lawn. Stripes, chequers, even circles distract the eye.
Use a lawn care service Feed the lawn annually to encourage the growth of desirable turf grasses.
Avoid frequent watering in dry summers, as meadow grass is shallow-rooting, so should be discouraged by drought.
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