Guide to Dallisgrass Identification & Control


Type of Weed: Grassy Weed

Paspalum dilatatum


Dallisgrass is a warm season perennial grassy weed that invades lawns throughout Texas and the Southeastern states.

This weed thrives in hot, humid conditions and is found in lawns with dry, compacted soil while adapting to areas with poor drainage.

Dallisgrass spreads by rhizomes and seed, which germinates in the spring and summer. This clump growing weed is difficult to control as it becomes more established throughout the lawn.

How to Identify

Dallisgrass has a fibrous root system consisting of short rhizomes. This lighter green weed grows in circular clumps with smooth, flat leaves that come to a sharp point. These leaves are approximately half an inch wide and sharply creased. They do not have auricles, but have tall, pointed ligules that are sometimes hairy at the base.

Dallisgrass produces tall terminal stalked seedheads, called a raceme, that can grow up to five feet tall when left un-mowed. This raceme produces hairy spikelets that are arranged in four rows on three to eight alternate branches. These spikelets start out green and then turn brown to black in color as begins to set seed.

Control Methods

Control Difficulty: Difficult - Very Difficult

This pesky weeds’ robust root system means it will take both mechanical and chemical methods to control it. Mechanical control of digging up Dallisgrass roots is the best way to control this weed and prevent it from invading the rest of your lawn.

Making sure to dig deep and wide enough as to not leave any rhizomes or seeds in the soil. If you are unable to dig up areas of your lawn, you can try a combination of pre and post emergent herbicide applications. Using a selective pre-emergent herbicide in the spring and fall (multiple times a season) can help prevent further Dallisgrass seeds being set.

During the summer, spot treating with a selective post emergent herbicide may slow the growth but most likely won’t kill this weed. Some may have to use a non-selective post emergent herbicide, which will kill the surrounding turf or plants. If so, make sure you reseed your lawn or apply new sod, to prevent future weeds from growing in bare spots.

Prevention Tips

The best way to prevent any weeds from growing in your lawn is proper cultural practices. Mowing your lawn at its proper grass height will encourage healthy growth.

Proper aeration will break up any compact soil, routine fertilization will help bulk up your lawn, and proper irrigation will ensure your soil doesn’t become too dry or overly wet. Using a combination of selective pre and post emergent herbicides throughout the year will be the extra layer of defense in deterring weed growth.

Our team of highly trained technicians are experts with grassy weeds, and can design a lawn care program that suppresses Dallisgrass throughout your lawn.
50% Off First Service

First Lawn Care Application

Fill out the form below for a free, no-obligation custom quote! For immediate assistance, please give us a call at 972-899-9249.

We will contact you via phone call or text shortly!