Orchardgrass Illustration

Orchardgrass

Dactylis glomerata

Orchardgrass is a perennial grassy weed that is also known as Cocksfoot, Cock’s Foot or by its scientific name, Dactylis glomerata. When left unchecked, this lawn weed can grow 15 to 18 inches tall.

Identify

Bunch

Bunch

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Membranous

Membranous

Orchardgrass can be identified as a bluish-green, clump-forming perennial grassy weed. Its ligule is very tall, sometimes jagged across the top, and its collar is broad and prominent. Orchardgrass sheaths are strongly compressed and flattened, usually green in color above and white below. The blades of this lawn weed are long and pointed, with a V-shaped appearance in the cross-section. Its seed head is a stiff-branched panicle that occurs from late spring through mid-summer.

Life Cycle

This lawn weed is typically found growing in home lawns, fields, waste areas and along the edges of roadsides, fence rows, forests and wooded thickets. Orchardgrass is commonly found growing in much of North America. These perennial grassy weeds 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.

Life Cycle Image

Control

Orchardgrass is a grassy weed that can tolerate close mowing, but can also grow 15 to 18 inches tall when left alone. Controlling this lawn weed depends largely on where it's growing. For effective weed removal, professionally selected and applied weed control treatments are your best bet for eradication.

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