Using the dreaded Couch grass as compost is still a great debate to a lot of gardeners out there. There are those who simply don’t want to risk the chance of having the grass growing all over their lawn after being made into compost and those who claim that they have to problems with it. Whatever their claims are, there are still a lot of issues in making use of this type of grass especially when you are about to spread a compost made from it all over your lawn.
Concern in using Couch grass as compost
One of the issues that people face in using couch grass for compost is the fact that it is extremely stubborn. Using it as compost for certain areas in your house or farm can lead to a tragedy of being overrun by this persistent pest. This grass simply doesn’t die once pulled out of the ground. It grows through its rhizomes and even if a tiny part of it ever gets back into the ground, it has a big chance of growing back to prime. Even placing the uprooted grass in a composter can provide it with a good enough environment for it to grow.
In plain thought, just burn the grass and be free from it. However, there are some who claim that even after being burned; this grass can simply grow back. The main problem about burning is when you just light it on fire without having pulled out the roots of the grass off the ground.
Making the compost from Couch grass
To start with the process of making the compost, you will need the grass itself. Dig out those that you find around your lawn and make sure that you remove all the traces of roots that you find attached to the soil. This way, there will be less or no chance at all for it to grow back.
Collect all the grasses that you have dug out then pile it in one place with a cement or plastic base to keep it off the ground. Cover the pile with a black garbage bag or plastic sheet then place it in an area with a lot of sun. The heat that will be generated inside the plastic will kill the plant together with the lack of sunlight. Leave it there until the grass dies out. This is true when they already smell awful.
Once that happens, place it in your composter and allow to stay there for a year or so just to be on the safe side.
Other method of killing the grass is by letting it hang in a wire off the ground and allow the sun to dry it out completely before you place it in the composter.
Another method that you can try is by the process of drowning it. Place the grass in a container filled with water, cover with black plastic and allow to sit under the sun until it becomes soupy and smelly.
Killing the grass is important to avoid any growth after being made into compost and applied to the ground. Couch grass is stubborn so you need to be well aware of that.
Couch grass is a persistent perennial that has been a great headache to gardeners all over the world and has paved its way to the pedestal of must-kill plant. A lot of people hate having this grass around their lawn and a lot of gardeners have made drastic measures to keep them out. Although the grass has had its fair share of benefits to other people, there is still no keeping the people who hate it find ways to get rid of it for good. Herbicide is one of the chemical product that that’s been part of the weed killer’s arsenal against the grass and is one that’s most successful so far.
The types of herbicides used against Couch grass
Non-Selective Herbicide – this type of herbicide used against Couch grass kills any kind of vegetation from which it is applied. From the name itself, it selects no living plant to kill once it is applied. Spraying this herbicide is usually done where there are no other plants around. Once you spray near any plants, you’ll end up with dead debris in a matter of days. This is commonly used when clearing the area before planting anything on it.
Selective Herbicide – this kind of herbicide can be chemically formulated to kill a certain plant like the Couch. The best time to use this is when the grass has grown to about 6 inches in height and is again sprayed for the second time before the grass reaches another height of 6 inches. Spring and summer are the best months in spraying this herbicide where the leaf of the grass has reached his full bloom giving it better success rate given the wider surface area from it to cling on.
Pre-emergent Herbicide – this herbicide prevents the grass from germinating which is a good option to go for if you have existing grass on your lawn or field. This way, you won’t have to dig out the land just to get rid of the grass. The only concern to this is that you should be well aware of the area you have to make sure that you get to apply it before it even starts to grow. The early days of spring are the best time to use this.
Other Herbicides – the other forms of herbicides suppress the leaves of this grass or harm it together with the stems although it is not enough to fully get rid of the grass. This type of herbicide is commonly paired with the post-emergent herbicide to control any destructive grass from outgrowing the ones you already have.
Tips in using herbicides on Couch grass
The best tip you can ever get in using herbicides is to follow what is written in the package. They are there for a reason and it’s best to stick to it. Patience and extreme caution is important since some herbicides can damage those around the weeds you want to kill. Ask for professional help if you still don’t succeed so that you’ll completely free yourself from the devastating effects of Couch grass.
The lethargic feeling a person gets after an exhaustive activity can sometimes take too much toll on his body. The sensation makes you feel so low in strength, that by the time you get home from work you just can’t help but drag your body up to your sack and sleep. For this, you can use Couch grass to aid you in the process called detoxification. All the while, our body gets in toxins from around us and there are times when it just can’t take too much of it. This is when it needs help from us.
Using Couch grass in the detoxification process
Couch grass has been around for centuries and is considered by French as a spring tonic where it is made into some sort of herbal tea that you can use in detoxifying your body. The roots or rhizomes of the grass are the part that’s commonly used in this process and be warned; a lot of people say it has such an unpleasant taste. Worry not, it’s just the taste but the tonic itself has been proven to be used as an alternative medicine in many areas of France. The tonic has shown great benefits on patients and has aided them in draining toxins found in the liver and kidney. For a quick remedy, chop a handful of couch grass and simmer in half a liter of water for about 20 minutes then steep for 10 minutes more before straining in fine cloth and serving to patient.
To make a tea out of the grass, use 2 teaspoon of dried roots in one cup of water. Bring it to a boil then allow simmering for a few minutes. This can be served three times a day to have better results. This tea is perfect in soothing any inflammations in the throat, urinary tract and stomach. This can also help in loosening hard to cough phlegm which makes it perfect in situations where patients have laryngitis. This tea promotes the immune system of a person and aids in long term protection. It even helps in production of red blood corpuscles and haemoglobin improving the transportation of oxygen to the cells of the body allowing it to repair faster. Research has also proven that the grass concoction helps in regeneration and renewal of intestinal fluids that aid deep tissues in restoring itself from any damage.
Enjoying the bright side of Couch grass
No matter how gardeners view this grass as some kind of pest, they still can set aside the benefits that it has to a lot of people from the old times. It may be true that it has the stubborn attitude of overgrowing those that are around it and so persistent in surviving even from weeding methods but there still is a brighter side to this plant and it should be the side that we should focus on cultivating. Regardless of the damage it has done, Couch grass still should be dealt with according to its purpose for those around it.
Couch grass is known by many names like twitch grass, quack grass, dog grass and more. Although blessed with various names, there is one thing in common that a lot of gardeners see this grass is and that’s as a pest. This type of grass is perennial an can survive all the four seasons recovering after the frost and still living on after drought. The worse part of this grass is how it can grow after being pulled out of the ground. A single part of it can multiply into a new grass and grow much further and regenerate like a plant on steroids.
However, there are still uses for this grass and are great to have in lawns where there are a lot of activities. Since this grass is so persistent, this makes it perfect for playgrounds and lawns where pets and kids run around like crazy.
Steps on planting couch grass
The first step to plant couch grass like any other grass is to check if the soil you have is suitable for planting. One way is to carry out a pH test. Bear in mind that the grass grows in a range of 6.0 to 7.0. You can do this by buying a test kit you can find in a nearby gardening supply store. Purchase a couple of these kits and take samples on different areas of your lawn and have it tested. Wait for the results and make adjustments for the right range of pH that you need to make the grass grow.
Clear the area from any form of debris like stones, metal fragments and plastics. Other vegetations can be easily removed and run over by the grass so you don’t have to worry much about a few presence in your area. If there is a need for you to use herbicide then do so.
Start tilling the soil and then apply fertilizer to start off the lawn and water for at least two days. Use compost all over the area with a height of about two inches and till again to mix the soil and compost altogether.
Use a mechanical seed spreader if you have a large area and a hand held one if you have a smaller area. Make sure that you seed the area thoroughly for even growth. Use a rake to further even out the distribution of seed in the area.
Water regularly before it starts to germinate out of the ground. In a couple of weeks, the sprouting will happen so you need to be really patient on waiting for it.
Tips on planting Couch grass
Plant your grass on early spring where the warm weather is perfect for growing any plant. For a better and even sprinkling, use a reliable sprinkler system. To avoid any fungus infecting your grass, you need to avoid watering it late in the afternoon. Perseverance is important, work with it and regularly check on the Couch grass you have just planted for a better supervision.