Bruce owns a small farm and loves to grill since his early childhood. He’s a professional cook, but hiking and enjoying the great outdoors is his no less favorite part of life.
Last updated: January 25, 2021
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Crabgrass is the culprit of destroying the scenic beauty of your garden, which sticks out like a sore thumb. Apart from its unappealing look, crabgrass spreads quickly and crowds-out the beneficial grass. However, this doesn’t mean you should be daunted by crabgrass, because the best crabgrass killers will restore the beauty and scenery of your lawn back to what it was.
How can you get your hands on an effective crabgrass killer? For your assistance, we’ve examined 39 products available on the market and found 10 perfect crabgrass killers for you. Our Editor’s Choice for your dainty garden is the Syngenta Tenacity Turf Herbicide. Not only is the product applicable as both pre-emergent and post-emergent herbicide, but its ease of use makes it one of the best products out there. Apart from this, we reviewed nine other popular products so you can pick the one most suited to your needs.
What are the differences between the crabgrass killers? What factors should one consider for my garden? Through this overview table, in-depth reviews, and the buying guide, we make sure to answer all the possible questions that may arise in your mind. For this article, we’ve spent more than 50 hours carefully scanning through all the products and official websites, keeping in mind the most important features such as active ingredients, consumption, net contents, and shelf life. The active ingredient is the imperative feature of a crabgrass killer that tells which chemical is responsible for the control of pests. Secondly, the consumption factor, which depicts the usage required per land, and the net contents of the bottle together help you assess how much of the product is needed to work. Lastly, we considered the shelf life to find out how long it can be stored. Before we delve into the buying guide, let’s focus on the table below!
This crabgrass killer is your best friend. It can be applied as a pre-emergent and a post-emergent herbicide. To keep your yard green and crabgrass-free, it restricts the weeds from photosynthesizing instead of acting as a harmful chemical. Moreover, not only is the application easy, but it also comes equipped with a syringe, which can help you measure your contents carefully up to an ounce!
While it does have limited net contents and asks for reapplication every few weeks, it does wonders for your yard. Apart from crabgrass, it keeps chickweed, clover, dandelion, thistle, wildcarrot, and purslane away from your garden. If you’re worried about its effects on the beneficial grass, there is no need for that – this crabgrass killer has been deemed the best because of its ‘selective’ nature, which doesn’t affect your healthy grass.
As compared to the other products that you will find below, this product also has a good shelf life of around 5-8 years from the date of manufacture. This makes it not only the perfect buy but also our Editor’s Choice!
What we liked:
Dual-use as a pre-emergent and post-emergent herbicide
This action-packed crabgrass killer for lawn is an all-in-one product that provides you with multiple features. The formula of this product kills over 200 kinds of weeds, such as dandelion and clover, making it one of the best crabgrass and dandelion killers. But what makes this an all-rounder as an herbicide?
Firstly, it is equipped with an ergo-grip sprayer, which is battery-powered. Secondly, it smart tracks weeds by marking them red, which fades with sunlight. Thirdly, you don’t have to worry about rain ruining your hard work, as after one hour the crabgrass killer becomes rainproof. Lastly, it is the friend of your lawn grass as it only harms the weeds that spread out and crowd-out the healthy grass.
The only limitation to this product is that it can’t be used when the temperature is greater than 90 degrees F. Apart from that, this Bio-Advanced product is one of the best crabgrass killers for bermuda lawn as well and is usable on fescue, ryegrass, and zoysia. Customer reviews showed us that they prefer this product because of its ease of use, its net content, and the major aspect: value for money. For the amazing features it offers, this product is surely a steal at just about $20!
What we liked:
Rainproof in one hour
Equipped with battery-powered sprayer
Kills over 200 of the most common broadleaf weeds
What could be better:
Unsuitable for areas with temperature above 90 degrees
The RM43 provides its users with a complete weed control package. With an ample content of 1 gallon, this crabgrass killer concentrate is a great combination of two main active ingredients. This not only restricts the growth of crabgrass and weeds but also prevents their growth for up to 12 months.
This means with a single package, which is applicable for 17,297 square feet, you protect your lawn for more than a year. We haven’t even reached the best part yet, this product kills the weeds from the roots and becomes rainproof after two hours.
With its versatile application, the crabgrass killer concentrate is perfect for spot treatment as well. If you notice any sparse vegetation or shrubs on the fence rows, gravel paths, sidewalks, driveways, and parking areas, the RM43 will provide protection to your garden. Its spot treatment action can prevent further growth in the area for about a year.
However, there is a catch: you need to be extremely careful with using this product you’re your plants as it will effectively remove that as well. Unlike other products, this is a non-selective herbicide, which and needs to be used with care around useful plants.
The Compare-N-Save Concentrate Grass and Weed Killer is a crabgrass killer that gets to the roots. It works its magic to provide you with visible results within 2-4 days. With a shelf life of more than 5 years and net content of a gallon, you could safely use this product as much as required to kill the crabgrass and weeds. Moreover, the 1 gallon worth of content makes up to 85 gallons of ready-to-use spray solution applicable to a large land of up to 25000 square feet.
The beneficial features about this crabgrass killer include the ability to become rainproof after two hours, and the ease of use. It could be mixed easily with water to be used along driveways, walkways, fences, around flowerbeds and trees to give a neat look to these places.
However, its powerful and strong nature is the very cause of its limitation. This crabgrass concentrate can’t be applied everywhere as it kills all green plants, and it can potentially kill your vegetation if it comes in contact with it.
For people who are concerned with using harmful chemicals on their plants and near areas accessible to humans and pets, the Green Gobbler Vinegar Weed & Grass Killer crabgrass killer is the perfect product. Being certified for organic use, it does its job effectively without containing any harmful or toxic chemicals. It is made out of corn, which also makes it safe to be used in residential, industrial, and commercial areas.
The organic nature makes it have an indefinite shelf life, which makes this product a perfect fit for people who do not require it often. The powerful formula is stronger than vinegar and acts on every kind of weed and grass it comes into contact with. These include dandelions, chickweed, thistle, dollarweed, clover weeds, white clover, moss, and of course, crabgrass. The product is also accompanied by a sprayer.
The only downside of this crabgrass and dandelion killer is that it is non-selective and thus kills all the grass it comes in contact with even if it is the desired plant. This is why a little caution is required when using it.
The Spectracide Weed & Grass Killer is a great option for your driveways, walkways, fences, yards, trees, and flower beds, which helps them to be neater versions of themselves. This crabgrass concentrate boasts a fast-acting formula, which gives you results within 3 hours. Not only this, but the concentrate becomes rainproof after only 15 minutes of application.
The best way to use this crabgrass killer is to mix it with water and apply it with a tank sprayer. It removes the cover and vegetation right from the roots. However, it requires sunny weather when the temperature is above 60 degrees. The results can be seen within 3 hours, but it does depend on the temperature, application rate, and the grass type. Its ease of use and the value for money make it one of the best crabgrass killers on the market.
Nevertheless, there is one catch. This is a non-selective crabgrass killer and is only effective to be used for vegetation that is not desired. If sprayed otherwise, it will kill the roots of all the plants. Furthermore, it is advised not to mow the grass for at least 7 days after the application.
What we liked:
Kills the roots
What could be better:
Requires a lot of attention and good weather conditions for application
The ITS Supply T-Zone Turf Herbicide is a crabgrass killer concentrate, which removes the weed it comes in contact with. You can use it to kill multiple weeds, such as the wild violets and outgrowths on your patio, driveway, sidewalk, curbs, fences, foundations as well as gravel areas. It is also perfectly suitable for use on golf courses. Within 3 hours after application, this crabgrass killer concentrate becomes rainproof, and within 24 hours, it will start showing you favorable visible results by killing the weeds to the root.
This herbicide provides its users with a fast-action low-odor formula that targets existing weeds and also prevents the growth of weeds in the future for up to a month. It must be used with a tank sprayer, which is beneficial in treating larger areas at a time.
Even though it provides fast visual results, you might want to use a second time to get rid of the weeds completely. It is perfectly suitable for use at 85°F and can be applied at as low as 50°F.
What we liked:
Fast visual results
Suitable for use at 50-85°F
What could be better:
May require a second treatment to completely kill off the weed
The Quali-Pro Quinclorac 75 DF Selective Herbicide is a post-emergent selective crabgrass killer that is useful for spot treatment. It can be applied to various turf types and can be used on sites such as commercial and residential turfgrass, golf courses, and sports fields as well.
It targets the weed leaves and roots that absorb this concentrate and transport it throughout the system. The treated weed will then curl and change color, indicating that it has dried. The benefits of using this crabgrass killer include the period when weeds and grasses don’t show up, and that lasts up to 90 days.
Secondly, it provides seeding flexibility by being an ideal application for seeding and over-seeding.
Lastly, it has been established and known to control even mature crabgrass, which most crabgrass killers miss. Apart from crabgrass, it is effective against clover, dandelion, foxtail, black medic, English daisy, morning glory, bindweed, signalgrass, and violet.
The only downside to this crabgrass killer is that the bermuda grass is not resistant to its chemical nature and might be harmed as well.
This Ortho Weed B Gon Weed Killer is a powerful concentrate, which is best suited to attack major broadleaf weeds, including crabgrass, dandelion, clover, chickweed, dollarweed, and thistle. This dandelion and crabgrass killer focuses on the roots causing the weeds to curl up and die. You can observe the results visibly after a few hours of application. If you live in an area that is prone to rainfalls, this is your safest bet as the product becomes rain-resistant after an hour of application. The customers say that this product is easy to use and it doesn’t cost much. You will love its shelf life and large volume that is capable of covering up to 16000 sq. feet of land.
The only downside of this crabgrass killer is the rigidity. Although it is a selective crabgrass killer concentrate and does not harm the desirable vegetation and grass, it is imperative to follow the instructions down to the last measurement. If the measurements are off, they might either cease to be effective in killing crabgrass or might kill the lawn grass as well.
BioAdvanced company presents the effective crabgrass killer, which truly is “all in one”. Apart from effectively attacking the crabgrass’ roots, the product also offers micro-feed action. This feature nourishes your plants and improves the nutrient uptake during and between feeds. Thus, it not only kills weed but also feeds and strengthens your lawn as well.
It is known for its features, starting from its ease to spread and use while also being a good value for money as it provides multiple benefits in one package. The granules in this package are known to treat up to 10,000 square feet of land effectively by nourishing its soil and removing the crabgrass.
The Weed & Feed also enhances the appearance of your turf by making it look greener than before.
However, there’s a catch! This crabgrass killer is only effective for the northern turf types, which means the southern turf types will be unable to benefit from its multi-featured action.
What we liked:
Treats up to 10,000 square feet
Makes your lawn look greener
What could be better:
Created for northern turf types only
Things to Consider
Crabgrass is a form of weed that simply spoils your garden and makes it look unappealing. Because of that, it is essential to control it with a crabgrass killer before it is able to spread out. A crabgrass killer could be a concentrate or in the form of granules. They could be selective or non-selective. How do you make the best choice? While we have reviewed products with their pros and cons for you in detail, we now answer any questions that may arise and present to you our buying guide to assist you in making your final decision.
How can I know that I need to use a crabgrass killer?
Crabgrass killers are effective and great for use – but how will you know that you need to use one? Crabgrass grows in clumps with stems joined to the center, resembling a crab. The need to use a crabgrass killer to remove this weed is based on different factors.
Generally, it depends on the level of infestation. If you spot one or two plants of crabgrass in your yard or garden, you can proceed to remove it by simply pulling it out. However, if your turf is completely taken over by a crabgrass infestation, then perhaps it’s time to bust them out with a crabgrass killer.
Nevertheless, this is not all. Some people have reservations about using chemicals on their lawns so you can continue pulling the weeds during the springtime, nourishing your soil, and then reseeding. If this proves to be a hassle or a challenge, you could go for an organic crabgrass killer. If the crabgrass still persists, you may need to use a chemical-based crabgrass killer concentrate. Another aspect of this includes the outgrowth of weeds through the walkways and driveways. The best and the safest way to remove those for a neater look is to use a crabgrass killer.
Picking the best crabgrass killer
Finding the right product for your garden is no easy task because there is no single product that is suited to all. It depends on various factors, such as the brand, active ingredients, toxicity, and consumption. In other words, it depends on your personal preference and usage. Are you using it for your lawn or driveway? Are there children and pets in your house or not? Is it for industrial use? The answer to all these questions change which crabgrass killer would be the best for you.
A brand plays an important role in the choice of a crabgrass killer as it indicates the reliability and effectiveness of the product. Our review presents different products and brands and shows two clear winners that stood out as reliable and effective. First is the Editor’s Choice, Tenacity Turf Herbicide by Syngenta, which received unanimous praise for its reliability with many reviews claiming it to be “magic”. However, many claimed that it requires patience as it is a selective herbicide, and it will not show results in 24 hours. If you are looking for a non-selective brand, then the Spectracide Weed & Grass Killer is a way to go as it attacks the crabgrass at the roots, is rainproof after 15 minutes of application, and most importantly, has a fast-acting formula which shows results within 3 hours.
Active ingredients are chemicals or ingredients in crabgrass killers and herbicides that are responsible for preventing, destroying, repelling, and mitigating the spread of crabgrass. All other ingredients are deemed as inert ingredients by the law.
The careful choice of active ingredients is imperative as they dictate the nature of the crabgrass killer.
For example, an organic crabgrass killer uses vinegar or acetic acid as its active ingredient. Moreover, active ingredients show what they can target. For example, the active ingredient in Quinclorac 75 DF Selective Herbicide is Tricoplyr, which is harmful to bermuda grass, and, therefore, should not be used on it. The most popular active ingredient is Glyphosate (isopropylamine salt), which can be found in multiple products.
Most of the products’ descriptions, if not all of them, indicate that there should be no children and pets allowed near the spraying area until the concentrate has completely dried off. On the other hand, the organic crabgrass killer, such as the Green Gobbler Vinegar Weed & Grass Killer, is safe to use near pets and children. Some products also contain less toxic chemicals, including the Tenacity.
However, with experience and customer reviews, we would advise the user to be cautious with the applications and allowing the children to play nearby even after the product has dried off. Moreover, it is essential for the product to be stored in a location that is inaccessible to children and pets as the chemicals inside these products are harmful and can cause serious health damages if they come into contact. They should ideally be stored in a locked, dry, and well-ventilated place.
Different products stated different consumption numbers. These range up to 25,000 sq. ft. of land. The choice depends on the frequency, quantity and the land where you use it. Most liquid products must be mixed with water, and then they can be applied in your yard. For example, 1 gallon of the RM 43 concentrate is enough to cover up to 17,000 square feet.
Sometimes you will want to add less product in the mixture simple there are fewer pesky weeds in your garden. Just don’t forget the manufacturer’s recommendations before mixing and using it.
The efficiency of the crabgrass killers varies from product to product. On average, the effect lasts up to a few months. The efficiency largely depends on the formula and combination of the chemicals used. Sometimes, for a long-lasting effect, different brands use toxic components. Moreover, the effects also depend on the level of dilution by the users. If the chemical is more diluted, the effects tend to last for a shorter period of time.
It is also obvious that rain does affect the product’s performance. Since some products become rainproof after a few hours, they tend to maintain their effectiveness even after heavy rain. The RM 43 has the greatest lasting effect of up to 1 year. The Spectracide Weed & Grass Killer concentrate seems to be one of the fastest herbicides as it shows results within 6 hours, and the effects last for about a few weeks.
Is the entire package worth it? This could be determined by comparing the net content and the value for the money. Keeping in mind your personal requirements, the shelf-life, and the pricing, you should be able to make this decision easily.
If the infestation in your industrial farm or your residential area is large, then you might need to opt for a non-selective crabgrass killer, which might be more tailored to your needs for a cheaper buck. A more effective package could be the Ortho Weed B Gon Weed Killer, which is used for 16,000 square feet.
If you have a smaller garden, that means your requirement for the crabgrass killer at a time is low. This would leave behind a little bit of concentrate, which could be used in the next application. Longer shelf life is imperative in this case.
It is essential for you to take note of your requirements and see if the shelf life of the product allows it to be used the next year. You can store the leftover pesticide in a locked, dry, and ventilated room for years if that is stated on the package.
On average, the products have a shelf life of 2 years or so, with the Tenacity being an exception having a shelf life of more than 5 years. The overall winner here is the organic Green Gobbler Vinegar Weed & Grass Killer, which has an indefinite life.
The price is the most important factor for many of us. It is what tips you in favor of a product. It determines whether the product is worth purchasing or not. The products we reviewed ranged from $20 to $70 and more. The priciest option is the Syngenta Tenacity Turf Herbicide, but it might just be worth the price – its features, such as an added syringe, selective nature, and dual-action for pre and post-emergent weeds are what make it pricey and one of the best on the market.
How can you control something when you can’t identify it? To control crabgrass effectively, you need to know how it looks like at each stage. In its initial stages, crabgrass resembles a corn plant with wide leaf blades sprawling out from the center of the stem. This is what makes it resemble a crab. The seedling grows quickly and develops side shoots that then grow their own independent branches. However, crabgrass is a pro at masking its true face and adapting to the conditions of the soil and climate quickly. This is what makes it so dangerous – apart from its unappealing nature, it quickly spreads out, forming independent shoots and branches, crowding out other desirable plants in the process.
While you will want to wait for sunny weather, the application of crabgrass killers is not restricted to precipitations that might occur after a few hours. Luckily, there are certain brands that have developed rainproof crabgrass killer concentrates. They become rain-resistant after a certain time, or right after they become dry. Make sure to read the information that the manufacturer places on each container or canister to make the most of the product before using it. In this article, you can find multiple products that become rain resistant within an hour or so.
It is essential to follow the instructions that accompany the crabgrass killers. While they may differ from company to company, the result is usually visible through curling up of the leaves of the crabgrass, and yellowing-out of the leaves, which show that the crabgrass has died. This result is often visible within 24 hours of application, and some show results as quickly as within 3 hours, such as seen with the Spectracide Weed & Grass Killer Concentrate. The crabgrass killer should be used sparingly as directed by the instruction manual. They must be applied in spring before the crabgrass germinates, or twice a year in total. It is essential to follow the specific directions of application, as too much application can kill the grass and weeds alike.
With the wide variety of effective crab-grass killers on the market, how can you determine which one of them makes the final cut for us? We chose three products based on different factors, such as brand, net contents, consumption, active ingredients, and reliability.
As the Editor’s Choice, we have the Tenacity Turf Herbicide, which is the perfect product to go for if you want a two-in-one pre-emergent and post-emergent crabgrass killer.
However, if you have a vast land area to take care of, you might want to get something more affordable, such as the BioAdvanced All-in-One Lawn Weed & Crabgrass Killer. It appears to be the best value for money here as it comes in a large canister with a battery-powered sprayer for the ease of use.
If your needs are a bit different, you can check a non-selective crabgrass killer, such as the RM43 Total Vegetation Control. This fantastic product prevents the growth of the weeds for up to a year!
We hope that this article helped you find the best crabgrass killer for your needs. These products are all created to help you bring back the pristine condition of your garden!