How To Get Rid Of Nutsedge


Yellow Nutsedge Weed Information


Other Names: Yellow Nutsedge is also known as Nutgrass and Yellow Nutgrass, or Swampgrass


Scientific Name: Cyperus esculentus


Life Cycle: Perennial


How To Identify Yellow Nutsedge

  • Stems and leaves are yellow-green/waxy
  • Stems are upright and triangular (roll the stem between your fingers and it will be easy to see if it is triangular).
  • Grows well in wet soils
  • Once it is established it will grow fast and stick up above the turf.


What does Nutsedge look like?

Many customers call us up and wonder why some of their lawn is more yellow and is growing faster than the rest of their lawn. Without even looking at their lawn, I can tell them they have nutsedge. Yellow Nutsedge is not easily confused with other weeds when it is mature. If you are unsure if you have yellow nutsedge in your lawn, first make sure it is lighter and is more yellow than the rest of your lawn.

Secondly, do not mow your lawn for a week and check if it growing much faster than your grass. After a week, the nutsedge should be at least a half of an inch higher than the rest of the lawn. Thirdly, pull one of the nutsedge plants out of the ground, and look closely at the roots. If it is nutgrass, it will have roots that look like tubers. These roots look much different than your grass roots. Another way to tell if it is nutsedge and asking yourself when it appeared. In the northern United States, you will not notice nutsedge until July at the earliest.


 How to Kill Yellow Nutsedge

Yellow Nutsedge is difficult to control. There are not many products that will kill this troublesome weed. Yellow Nutsedge tends to show up during cool, wet summers and it produces tubers underneath the ground and spreads easily because of this. Sometimes Nutsedge tubers may be dormant underneath the ground for years, and start growing once moisture makes its way down to it. It may take several seasons to get Yellow Nutsedge under control because there are no labeled products that will kill Yellow Nutsedge.

We have success controlling Yellow Nutsedge/Nutgrass by applying herbicides that have a high amount of sulfrentrazone. The herbicide we use is called Dismiss Turf Herbicide. Yes, it is expensive, but is the most effective herbicide for Nutsedge by far. This herbicide has a crazy amount of sulfrentrazone in it – 38%! Most of the herbicides you can buy at the storm have less than 1% sulfrentrazone in them, and they are labeled for nutsedge. Do not waste your time or money with these products, and this does not have anywhere close to the amount needed to kill yellow nutsedge. Multiple application are required, sometimes for consecutive years, because many times the tubers underneath the surface will not germinate until the next year.

When dealing with troublesome weeds such as nutsedge, it is important to add a surfactant to your chemical. Surfacants are cheap and help the weed control stick to the weed, so you can achieve optimal control. Southern AG Surfactant is what we use.


How to get Rid of Nutgrass Organically

Unfortunately, Yellow Nutsedge is so difficult to kill that I cannot recommend an organic solution that actually works. Pulling the Nutgrass will help temporarily, and may be your only option. However, the root system will still be intact underneath the soil, so it will only work for one season at most. Digging 12 inches deep and putting new soil in its place is effective, yet a labor intensive job. Another way to help control nutgrass organically is by raising your mower deck and watering consistently to help your lawn compete with the the nutsedge.