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Nimblewill

Muhlenbergia schreberi

Nimblewill is a perennial grass that is also known by its scientific name, Muhlenbergia schreberi. This shade-loving grassy weed can become an aggressive lawn weed in undesired areas.

Identify

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Membranous

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Rolled

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Stolons

Nimblewill can be identified as a delicate, mat-forming perennial grass—or grassy weed—that is blue-green in color and has a reclining growth habit, often rooting at the nodes. Its ligule is short and jagged, and its collar is medium and smooth with long hairs at the edges. The sheaths of this part-time lawn weed are compressed, featuring a prominent white membrane along the edges. Its blades are flat, short and narrow with pointed tips. Nimblewill is a warm-season grass that goes dormant in northern climates, browning during winter. It resembles Creeping Bentgrass in appearance and growth habit, but is also often confused with Bermudagrass.

Life Cycle

This part-time grassy weed primarily grows in lawns and turf grass, though it can also occur in nurseries, orchards and landscapes. Nimblewill can be found throughout much of the United States, with the exception of the Pacific Northwest and parts of the Southwest. These perennial grasses can germinate and spread from seeds, but they also produce a root structure (tubers, bulbs or corms) that can birth new weeds from your lawn’s surface (using stolons) or from underground (using rhizomes). Perennial grassy weeds live two or more years and have a deeper root structure that can give rise to new weeds—even if you no longer see the weeds in your lawn.

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Control

In warmer climates, Nimblewill can be extremely aggressive in unfertilized grass—especially in shady areas. Cultural weed control methods—including low-level lawn mowing, hand-pulling lawn weeds and proper watering routines—can discourage this grassy weed but are not always effective. For effective weed removal, professionally selected and applied weed control treatments are your best bet for eradication.

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