JeffCO H20:Please Don’t Feed the Weeds


Sure, winter is still here and it’s cold outside.  But for those of you who have visions of lush green turf grass dancing in your heads, rest assured that a beautiful well-kept lawn is just a few months away.  It’s important to know what type of turf grass you have prior to applying any products. The most common grasses for our area are Bermuda, zoysia, centipede and St. Augustine.  These are called warm season grasses because they go dormant in cold weather.  Experts recommend applying a pre-emergent product to your lawn once per year.  If you missed this chore in the fall, mid to late February is an ideal time to eliminate weeds before they    have a chance to establish. This preemptive strike could reduce the need for herbicides later in the growing season.  One temptation is also to fertilize the lawn before it is “awake”.  Fertilizing your lawn before it is green and ready to uptake nutrients will only provide an ideal situation for weeds to grow, waste your money, and possibly provide an opportunity for rain to wash the fertilizer into local waterways.  Always wait until the temperatures are warm enough so that there is no chance of frost, and your turf grass is completely green before applying the right fertilizer for your soil’s needs.  For best results, FIRST do a soil test to determine exactly what nutrients are missing.  You can pick up a FREE soil test kit from the Jefferson County Stormwater Program Office, B-210 Courthouse, or at your local Alabama Extension Office.  The cost to mail and receive an analysis from Auburn University is $7 per sample.  Then, choose the right product for the job and ALWAYS follow label directions.

What’s Happening?

AL People Against a Littered State (PALS) Spring Cleanup – Want to make a difference in your community?  Consider organizing or participating in a volunteer roadside litter cleanup.  Last year, 1076 volunteers participated in 35 cleanups, removing 57 tons of litter and trash from roadways in unincorporated Jefferson County.  Several of these volunteers received statewide awards for their efforts.  Cleanup resources such as flyers, gloves, bags, safety t-shirts, traffic control and trash disposal are available for FREE to unincorporated Jefferson County Communities.  Call 325-8741 to learn how your community can participate!

Tree Seedling Giveaway – February 22 – Celebrate Arbor Day and stop by Linn Park from 8 am – 2 pm to select FREE tree seedlings ready for planting.  For more information, call 787-5222 or 781-0598.

 25th Annual Plant Dig – February 25 – Grab your shovels, wheeled carts, and come on out to the New Georgia Landfill between 8 am and 1 pm to select and bring home some FREE native plants, just in time for your spring gardening plans!  Call 787-5222 or 781-0598 to learn more.


Lyn DiClemente
Jefferson County Department of Storm Water Management
B-210 Jefferson County Courthouse Annex
716 Richard Arrington Jr. Blvd. North
Birmingham, AL  35203