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Pre- & Post-Emergent Weed Control: What Are They & Do You Need Both?

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If you want to ensure your lawn in North Carolina stays in tip-top health throughout the year, you should consider treating your grass with pre- and post-emergent weed control treatments. These treatments ensure your lawn is weed-free and can maximize available nutrients! Pre-emergent weed control treatments keep weeds from emerging on your lawn by forming a barrier in the soil that new weeds can’t penetrate. Meanwhile, post-emergent treatments are meant to target existing weeds that have already surfaced on your lawn. To protect your lawn from weeds, you need both treatments. Pre-emergent treatments should be applied at specific times of the year to effectively get ahead of weeds, while post-emergent treatments can be applied anytime you see weeds on your turf.

What is pre-emergent weed control, and how does it work?

Pre-emergent weed control treatments are designed to prevent weeds from sprouting on your lawn. It does this by creating a barrier in the soil that stops weeds in their tracks and keeps them from breaking through the surface of your lawn. This weed control treatment is a proactive measure that ensures weeds don’t establish on your turf in the first place and can’t start competing with your grass for nutrients.

What is post-emergent weed control, and how does it work?

Post-emergent weed control treatments eliminate existing weeds on your lawn. While pre-emergent treatments do a great job of blocking weeds from breaking through the surface of your soil, they won’t work on existing weeds or weeds that are already past a certain point in their development. That’s where post-emergent treatments come in. They target weeds from the foliage to the roots, effectively eliminating them from your lawn! Post-emergent weed control treatments are typically applied multiple times throughout the year. Doing this ensures your lawn stays free of nutrient-stealing weeds in every season.

Common weeds in North Carolina include henbit, clover, dandelion, spurge, nutsedge, and more.

Combine Pre- & Post-Emergent Weed Control Treatments to Achieve a Weed-Free Lawn

Pre- and post-emergent weed control treatments target weeds during different stages of their growth cycle and work together to keep your lawn weed-free. That’s why you must incorporate both treatments into your lawn care regimen. A pre-emergent treatment can give you a head start in controlling the number of weeds that will sprout on your lawn, but it won’t affect weeds that are already on your turf. A post-emergent treatment will only target existing weeds, and you’ll need to reapply it to eradicate new weeds as they emerge. To get the best results, here are the best times to apply pre- and post-emergent weed control treatments: