University of Maryland Extension

Yellow nutsedge

(More Lawn Weeds) 

Yellow nutsedge
Cyperus esculentusyellow nutsedge

Life cycle

Perennial; Classified as a sedge not technically a grass.

Growth habit 

Leaves shiny, yellow-green, narrow, and grass-like; stems are 3-sided, triangular in cross section.


From small nutlets (tubers) attached to rhizomes/possibly seed.

nutsedge roots and offshoots
Nutsedge spreads by offshoots as well as seed

yellow nutsedge seedhead
Yellow nutsedge seed spike

Conditions that favor growth 

Colonizes wet areas with poor drainage; diverting water or improving drainage can help reduce the weed infestation.

Management In Lawns

  • Cultural practice
    Maintain healthy, dense turf that can compete and prevent weed establishment.

  • Mechanical Management 
    Digging out or using an appropriate weeding tool to remove the underground
    'nutlets' is the primary means of mechanical control of nutsedge. This is a viable option at the beginning of an infestation and on young weeds.
  • Chemical Management in Lawns 
    Spot treat the areas that have nutsedge with a liquid, selective herbicide that contains the active ingredient: Common Name: Halosulfuron; Trade Name: Sedgehammer and others or Common Name: Sulfentrazone

  • Organic Lawn Herbicides                                                                         


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