Friday, September 4, 2020

I planted Kentucky Bluegrass and Crabgrass came out!

Purplish stigma and whitish anthers on the crabgrass spikelets

In springtime, I spread some seeds of what was supposed to be mainly Kentucky Bluegrass (Poa pratensis) on a denuded square of lawn that I had hastily (and stupidly) killed last year. I had been dissatisfied with the weedy looking grass in that area, and figured I'd grow some nice bluegrass on it instead.

Instead of the fine darkish blue leaves of bluegrass however, what sprouted mostly from the spot was a light green grass with broad coarse leaves. I tried to convince myself that the thing was merely one of the grasses in the mix, and I dutifully kept mowing it low over the whole season.

That delusion was crushed just this afternoon when I suddenly noticed extremely low lying inflorescence on the grass, and when I knelt down to peer at the tiny flowerheads I had to groan.

It was of course a Digitaria species, a weed.  I did not have the heart (or desire) to try to figure out whether it was D. ischaemum (smooth crabgrass), D. sanguinalis (hairy crabgrass), or some other species in the genus.

In the end, I salvaged the situation by taking some macro shots of the flowerheads of the weed, but that was really small consolation.

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