Over a month of hard work went into renovating my front lawn last fall. It was beautiful when it was finally finished. Lush, green and weed free. The reason I did so much work on the front, is that I had no idea what was a weed and what was a flower anymore. The previous owner had a ton of flowers, landscape rock, and trinkets in the yard. There was also a dying tree. Simply put, it was way too much work for a busy person to maintain.

Matt Sparx
Matt Sparx

Now that spring is finally here, the grass is starting to come out of dormancy and green up. So are the weeds. I don't know about you, but I do not want weeds in my yard. I did a little research and this is what I came up with to keep those pesky unwanted weeds away.

Pre-Emergent Herbicide

This is one of the very first things you should put down in the spring. When soil temperatures start to get to around 55 degrees, crabgrass starts to germinate. You can put a halt to the crabgrass germination with a chemical called Prodiamine. I chose to go with Prodiamine 65 WDG (water dispersible granule). I will do two applications per year with this herbicide as it will last for months. The best part about this particular herbicide is that I probably will never have to buy another pre-emergent again as it comes in a 5 lb. tub and I only need .37 oz. per 1000 square feet per application.

Matt Sparx
Matt Sparx

The photo above was taken on April 7th. That was the day that I applied my pre-emergent herbicide. You might not be able to see a lot of them, but there are weeds there in the grass. The pre-emergent will not take care of the already germinated weeds, so another application of a different herbicide had to be used.

Selective Herbicide

After copious amounts of research, I opted to go with a 2,4-D herbicide. This is a selective herbicide that will kill off broadleaf weeds in your yard without killing your grass. I applied the 2,4-D at a rate of 1.5 oz. per 1,000 square feet via a backpack sprayer. The very next day, there was evidence of the weeds dying off in the yard. Needless to say, I was pretty impressed. The 2,4-D I used was Fertilome Weed Free Zone.


A good fertilizer will give you green, healthy grass. This is a crucial role in having a healthy yard. I am currently using a fertilizer that is made from organic material. I am still in the process of finding a good fertilizer that will not burn the yard if too much may have been applied. If you can find one or recommend one, I would love to hear what you use.

Get Tested

Last fall before I laid my new grass seed down, I wanted to make sure that I had the best possible conditions for the seed to thrive, so I ordered a soil test. This soil test I purchased on Amazon and sent off to the lab to see what was there and what wasn't. To my surprise, I found out that my soil is on the higher end of alkaline and I needed to amend the PH for optimal growing conditions. Other nutrients were needed as well and I made sure to add them prior to seeding.

Additional Tips

When applying herbicides, you might be like me and new to all of this. You want to make sure you put down enough and not too much. I would suggest a blue marking liquid that you can add to your spring liquid. It is incredibly easy to use and very helpful.

Grass seed - You may want to fill up those bare spots this spring with grass seed... Wait til fall. Now hear me out. If you apply a pre-emergent in the spring, your grass seed will not germinate because of the pre-emergent. There is also the factor of hot summer temperatures and growth. Grass seed is delicate and fall is a better time of the year to overseed or re-seed your yard. Your success rate for germination and keeping the newly sprouted seedlings alive will be much greater in the fall.


That's all I have for you right now. I am sure I will have more as the weeks go on into summer.

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