Garden Care

How To Get Rid Of Clumping Tall Fescue – Detailed Instruction

The sudden appearance of clumping tall fescue in the garden makes many owners feel worried about other plants.

Methods to get rid of them effectively and thoroughly are what everyone needs most right now.

So what must we do to destroy them and prevent them from returning? We will reveal it in the following parts.

What Are Tall Fescue Clumps?

clumping tall fescue

Tall fescue weed is a grass native to Europe and was introduced to the United States in the early 1800s when garden lawns began to become fashionable there.

Gardeners can grow it from seed with a higher germination rate than even Kentucky bluegrass lawns, bermuda grass.

This grass is dark green and has small and short stems, a wide leaf blade, and flowers that grow in small clusters.

This grass is adaptable to both hot and cold environments; especially it thrives in warm climates. They do not die in winter and can live with soil temperatures under 0ºC.

Thanks to their large and deep roots, they can dig up vertical shoots 2-3 feet below the ground. This makes its heat and drought tolerance much better than warm-season grasses and cool-season grass.

Unlike most perennial grass or marsh grass types, these turf types grow in individual clumps. Tall fescue varieties easily stay away from flower beds but limit their ability to repair when lawns do occur.

How To Get Rid Of Clumping Tall Fescue?

fescue grass clumps

If you intend to grow this grass, it shouldn’t be a problem, but uninvited seeds will spawn annoying tall weeds in your garden.

You can use manual methods of plucking or pruning to get rid of them, but using selective herbicide will bring a more thorough effect.

Tall fescue varieties are not always welcome as they can cause problems, especially for ranchers and wildlife.

Their seeds can be fatal to animals when accidentally ingested so they can cause millions of dollars in damage to the livestock industry.

Not only that, it is also a threat to vegetation.

The reproduction and rapid growth of fescue clumps of grass will invade the growing space of other plants, leaving them without enough soil to grow and thrive.

Tall grass also impedes the movement of birds and livestock.

Thus, it is important to remove unprofitable bushes as soon as possible.

Cut Or Dig Up The Stump

To end the destruction of these plants, weeding, pruning, or digging them up is quite common. It would be best if you weed during the growing season manually.

Although you can dislike this chore, it is effective and almost safe for humans.

For extended weeding sessions, you’d better prepare waterproof gloves, a comfortable kneeling pad, and a camp stool. They will slide out of the soil more easily when wet and the grass is young.

Try to uproot all the roots, as any extensive root left in the ground can sprout.

Pull the weeds off the base – close to the soil line after twisting slightly to break the roots. If you accidentally cut the roots, try using a shovel or hoe to pry the left grass out of the ground.

Remove as many roots as possible.

While weeding, try to keep the fly upright – like children holding a crayon – to take the strain off your wrist.

Trimming with a lawn mower only works for a short time because the plant’s roots are still in the soil and will grow back very quickly.

Use Herbicides

Chemical weed treatment is the preeminent and most effective method, widely used in many fields, from cultivation, forestry, sanitation, and luminescence.

But overuse of herbicides in production can cause negative effects on crops, the environment, the quality of agricultural products, and human health, and threaten the ecological balance.

To minimize negative effects, this method should be used only when necessary, and selecting chemicals with clear origin, low toxicity, no long-term environmental retention, and don’t use nonselective herbicides.

Despite the disadvantage of killing both trees in the coarse fescue, Eraser 41% Glyphosate is still the most chosen name among the options on the market. For safe and effective use, apply the following guidelines:

Mix Herbicides 

Eraser 41% is a chemical that kills weeds after germination, so it is an effective solution to eliminate clumping fescue. Since it’s not highly selective, it destroys everything they come across.

It would help to be careful when using it next to other plants.

First, you need to determine the amount of chemicals that is enough for the amount of grass you have. You can get it by calculating the area of the application area in square yards.

About 2.5 oz per 300 square feet is needed for persistent grass like fescue—chemical solution per gallon of water.

Put the herbicide in the appropriate ratio into the spray bottle and shake gently to mix the mixture.

Apply Herbicides 

After preparing the solution, apply it in areas where clumping fescue grass is concentrated.

It would be best to spray in fan nozzle mode so that the sprayed chemical layer is smooth and evenly covered on the grass.

Eraser 41% has the strongest effect on young and active plants. But mature plants are more resistant to chemicals and will require repeated manipulation.

It will take you about 2 weeks to completely remove them.

Reseed Area

You cannot destroy this type of grass without affecting the nearby healthy lawn.

After spraying Eraser 41%, all (whether desirable grasses or unwanted) will die, so you need to remove the dead stumps and replant a new green carpet.

Other Control Methods

No matter how careful you are, using chemicals always carries certain risks, so in addition to the above, you can try other suggestions.

They cannot have an immediate effect or eliminate this plant, but they still have a certain product:

  • Use alcohol: Mix 1 to 5 tablespoons of alcohol mixed in 4 cups of water, then water the lawn. Weeds will die very quickly, but you should pay attention to avoid spraying on surrounding plants.
  • Sprinkle with salt: Salt is highly antiseptic, so it will quickly wither when you pour salt on the grass. Care should be taken when applying for gardens where other plants grow interspersed.
  • Baking soda: Like sea salt, you can sprinkle a tablespoon of baking soda on the grass, which will die off in a few days. You need to shield other crops carefully from the baking soda.
  • Use Vinegar: Vinegar is also an extremely effective natural weed killer without harm. You must use pure vinegar and spray it directly on the grass.
  • Use soap: you can use soapy water instead of vinegar to spray the weeds.

How To Prevent Clump Fescue Grass? 

getting rid of tall fescue clumps

Since unwanted tall fescue weed can also return, you must take measures to reduce this possibility. What helps you repel them is having a healthy garden and pasture grass with dense new grass.

Regularly mow the lawn to maintain the mowing heights at 3 – 4 inches, which helps prevent the entry of “uninvited guests.”

Don’t forget to improve the aeration and water-holding capacity of the types of soil by raking and demolishing the lawn.

Water them at 1 – 1.5 inches of water but preferably once a week.

Your garden also needs a reasonable fertilizing schedule, usually in peak growth periods, spring or summer, to promote the lawn growth habit and prevent fescue grass clumps.


As such, you can remove clumping tall fescue manually or using chemicals.

But remember that all the suggestions above have certain limitations, so you need to consider them carefully before choosing. Protecting the health of both you and your garden is a top priority.

Samuel Mark

Hello I am Samuel. Samuel's Garden is a garden blog where I share my experiences in garden caring and tree growth. Hope you enjoy it!

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