Weed Spraying Year Round
Truthfully, In Carlsbad, weed control is a year round thing. Our Southeast New Mexico desert climate and weather patterns provide perfect conditions for a variety of weeds to germinate throughout the year.
Proper weed management is both preventive and curative. And in our opinion, the preventive approach gives better longer lasting results. And with such a long growing season like we have in Carlsbad, lasting results are important.
The best time to treat for Winter and Spring weeds in lawns is in the Fall with a pre-emergent herbicide. If you had a well timed Fall pre-emergent treatment, you should have few if any weeds at all in the Winter and Spring.
If you didn't have a fall lawn treatment or have never been treated, then you may be in need of a treatment of the blue stuff this early in the season.
Mustard weed is one of the most common broadleaf weeds in Carlsbad and one of the first signs of Spring. Weeds like Mustard can sprout up over night and take over an untreated lawn quickly.
This photo was taken on the canal bank behind the Shorthorn Little League Fields at Sunset Park. However, the canal bank looks like this from where it begins at Lake Avalon to its very ends.
And while Mustard is a short lived winter annual that dies off in the Southern New Mexico heat, other weeds like Henbit last much longer into the season which can choke out areas of lawn and create dead spots. For this reason, there is generally a post emergent in the mix to kill the existing weeds.
While this approach works for a curative cosmetic appearance, a pre-emergent approach is preventive and allows the lawn to grow in without any competition.
Winter weeds or cool weather weeds generally germinate in the fall when the weather cools off. Then they sprout and grow in the cooler months of fall, winter, and early spring. As the weather warms, they make more seed and die while the seed lays dormant till next season.
The London Rocket or Mustard in the photo above is a good example of Winter weeds. This photo was taken on January 18, 2019. In this case, yes, a treatment is necessary. However, a post emergent to kill the weeds now is needed along with a pre-emergent.
A Fall pre-emergent application will address many of these weeds by preventing the seeds from germinating.
But then the question is... When is the correct time for a Fall application?
This requires us to know a bit about the weeds we're trying to control and their growth habits. The Fall season is a long window and different seeds germinate at different temperatures and weather patterns.
To say that a pre-emergent application anytime between September 22 and December 21 would suppress all cool weather weeds in Carlsbad, Artesia, and Southeast New Mexico would create a lot of improperly timed applications.
For example, Henbit is a dreaded cool weather annual that germinates in the Fall when the night time temperature reaches down to 55 to 60 degrees for several consecutive nights. So it would be necessary to get your pre-emergent down before this time.
It's also worth mentioning that, an area like Carlsbad sitting down in the Pecos Valley, can have several areas of different micro-climates where night time temperatures can vary. For instance, the neighborhoods through town along the Pecos River like North Shore Drive and Riverside Drive tend to have warmer night time temperatures due to the water.
Controlling Warm Weather Weeds
Warm weather and Summer weeds are best controlled by a Spring Time or late winter pre-emergent application. In Carlsbad's warmer climate, weeds like Spurge, Sand Bur, and Goatheads germinate in late Spring and need to be treated in the late Winter or early Spring to prevent the seeds from germinating. Sometimes even with professional service like our post emergent weed control, these weeds are hard to kill after they're growing so preventive service for control is best.
Again, knowing a bit about what we're targeting and its growth habits will tell us most everything we need to know in order to control it. For example, we like to get our applications for Sand Bur and Goatheads finished before March first. Around here in the Carlsbad, Artesia, and Southeast New Mexico area, this timing usually beats the germination.
Because our growing season is so long and our weather is so harsh, pre-emergents begin to break down before the growing season is over. And some plants will continue to make seed and sprout up until this time. As well, some species are just difficult to control and will require additional applications of post emergent herbicide.
Mid-Summer post emergent applications in our area are generally limited to spot spraying due to the heat index and is mostly needed for breakthrough weeds. Pre-emergents are used to extend the coverage against long season weeds like Spurge, Khaki Weed, Goathead, and Sand Bur. And still, other weeds like Clover / Black Medic often need three or more applications a season until they're in control.
Also, if we just started you on a lawn treatment program and your lawn has a lot of weed pressure, we may suggest a mid-summer application for the first one or two seasons until things are in control.
Bare Ground Soil Sterilant
With our weather, industry, and oilfield presence here in Southeast New Mexico, there is a need for bare ground soil applications all year long. There is something that grows in every season. Even under the coldest snow.
Bare ground herbicides are used to kill all vegetation and are most often used on oilfield weed control, parking lots, gravel drives, pipe yards, truck yards, and anywhere else that no vegetation is wanted for an extended period of time.
So there you have it. When is the best time to spray for weeds in Southeast New Mexico? Well... it depends. It depends on the types of weeds you're trying to control, your long and short term objectives, weather patterns, and soil temperature for the most part.
Professional Weed Control Service
If you live in Carlsbad or anywhere in Eddy County New Mexico and need weed spraying service, give Horizon Pest Control a call for service today at 575-725-9331. Our weed control treatments are designed specifically for Carlsbad and Southeast New Mexico. We'll look at your specific situation and advise you on the best time to spray. Give us a call today at 575-725-9331.