How to Get Rid of Coarse Grass in Your Lawn

If your lawn is patchy, spongey and grows at varying heights, coarse grass may be the issue at hand. The good news is that coarse grass is relatively easy to spot. When you catch it early, you can prevent it from taking over your entire lawn.

However, the bad news is that coarse grass isn’t quite as easy to manage as other lawn issues. It can take time and maintenance to get under control. But consistency and patience are the keys to success!

If you’ve noticed coarse grass in your lawn, here’s everything you need to know about what it is, what causes it and – most importantly – how to get rid of the different types of coarse grass in the easiest way possible.

What is Coarse Grass?


Coarse grass is when your lawn has been infected by different species of grass weeds. There are two different types of seeds that cause coarse grass – poa annua (also referred to as annual meadow grass) and creeping bentgrass. 

Coarse grass is usually easy to spot, as it can have: 

  • Light green patches
  • Yellow areas that appear burnt
  • Sections that are different heights
  • A spongey feel when you walk on it

Why is Coarse Grass Bad For Your Lawn?

Even though coarse grass may not always look terrible, it isn’t good for the overall health of your lawn. This is because the weeds that cause coarse grass are highly prone to diseases and pests. When they catch these diseases, they can easily spread across your entire lawn and kill off your grass completely. 

What Causes Coarse Grass?

If you’ve spotted coarse grass on your lawn, you’re probably wondering what has caused it. Coarse grass happens when the seeds get into your soil and sprout. It can happen naturally, but coarse grass is especially common in lawns that aren’t well looked after. 

Typically, coarse grass is caused by things like:

  • Compacted soil – The denser your soil is, the more susceptible it is to grass weeds.
  • Birds – Birds can spread almost every type of seed. If birds regularly visit your lawn or fly across it, they could be responsible for coarse grass seeds finding their way into your lawn.
  • Wind – Just like the birds can spread coarse grass seeds, so can the wind. If there are patches of exposed soil on your lawn, this can make it even easier for coarse grass seeds to settle in.
  • Extreme weather – Extreme weather conditions (especially freezing temperatures and seasonal changes) can cause coarse grass to appear.

How to Get Rid of Coarse Grass


Unfortunately, there’s no easy or ‘quick fix’ way of getting rid of coarse grass. Removing coarse grass always involves getting rid of the infected areas and replacing them with either new turf or seeds. 

You can use a weed killer to kill off most types of coarse grass. However, these chemicals can kill off the rest of your grass at the same time. Plus, there are natural ways of getting rid of coarse grass without using chemicals that will things much easier. 

Here are two methods to help you get rid of coarse grass, depending on how severe the issue is.

Method 1: How to Get Rid of Mild-Moderate Coarse Grass

Here’s how to get rid of mild-moderate coarse grass on your lawn in six steps.

  1. Apply a lawn fertiliser that’s high in nitrogen
  2. Mow your grass
  3. Lightly rake your lawn to remove debris and expose weeds
  4. Pull out the weeds by hand
  5. Fill in any exposed soil with topsoil
  6. Re-seed or lay new turf in the newly soiled areas

Method 2: How to Get Rid of Severe Coarse Grass

If your coarse grass issue is severe, you may need to apply a more intensive treatment. Here’s how to get rid of a severe type of coarse grass issue in five steps.

  1. Cut into the affected areas – Use a sod cutter or a knife to carefully cut away the infected patches of grass. Make sure you cut in a crisscross pattern right down to the roots.
  2. Rake away the debris
  3. Remove remaining weeds by hand 
  4. Apply topsoil to exposed patches of soil
  5. Re-seed or lay new turf in the newly soiled areas

How to Prevent Coarse Grass From Returning


Sometimes, coarse grass is completely out of our control. The seeds are always floating around our gardens and it’s easy for them to sneak their way into our lawns and sprout.

However, by regularly maintaining your lawn and keeping an eye on any issues, you can prevent severe coarse grass infestations.

To prevent coarse grass, make sure you:

  • Mow regularly
  • Keep exposed soil to a minimum by re-seeding in spring or autumn
  • Remove weeds when they are small and re-seed the patches
  • Keep your soil aerated to prevent compaction


Coarse grass is never easy to fix. But severe infestations of the weeds that cause coarse grass can be prevented. By maintaining your grass and keeping an eye on any potential issues, you can maintain a prim and proper lawn that looks great any time of year!

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