How to Kill Crabgrass in Bermuda Turf


There are two types of crabgrass: smooth crabgrass (Digitaria ischamum) and hairy crabgrass (Digitaria sanguinalis). They are both summer annuals that grow quickly and produce an abundance of seeds. The seeds require light to germinate, so keeping your turf thick and dense will go a long way in stopping crabgrass from gaining a foothold. Ridding the turf of a crabgrass infestation requires the use of herbicide, twice during the season. Read the label on the herbicide to see if it is certified for use on Bermuda turf. Failure to do this can result in the death of the turf.

Step 1

Determine when crabgrass emerges in your region. Call your county cooperative extension office to find out the dates. Make your first application of pre-emergent herbicide just before the crabgrass emerges from the soil.

Step 2

Mix the herbicide in the tank sprayer at the rate suggested on the herbicide label. Walk the length of the turf, spraying evenly as you walk. Turn and walk in a strip abutting the first pass, again spraying as you walk. Continue this pattern until the entire turf area has been sprayed.

Step 3

Water the area well after application to help activate the ingredients in the herbicide, unless the label specifies otherwise.

Step 4

Reapply the herbicide in two weeks using the same procedure.

Step 5

Wait at least three days after the second application to mow the lawn.

Step 6

Spray post-emergent herbicide directly on older crabgrass that managed to germinate. Spray the entire plant until it is dripping.

Tips and Warnings

  • Herbicides may contain poisonous chemicals. Read and follow all label directions and wear protective clothing during application. Store unused herbicide out of the reach of children and pets. Do not apply herbicides if the temperature exceeds 95 degrees Fahrenheit.

Things You'll Need

  • Tank sprayer
  • Pre-emergent herbicide marked for use on Burmudagrass
  • Post-emergent herbicide, pre-mixed in a spray bottle


  • Texas A&M University: Crabgrass
  • University of California, Davis: Crabgrass
  • ‭"‬Landscape Management:‭ ‬Planting and Maintenance of Trees,‭ ‬Shrubs and Turfgrass‭"; ‬James R.‭ ‬Feucht and Jack D.‭ ‬Butler‭; ‬1988
Keywords: crabgrass in bermudagrass, kill crabgrass, remove crabgrass

About this Author

Victoria Hunter, a former broadcaster and real estate agent, has provided audio and written services to both small businesses and large corporations worldwide. Hunter is a freelance writer specializing in the real estate industry. She devotes her spare time to her other passions: gardening and cooking. Hunter holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and creative writing.