How To Get Rid of Kikuyu Grass

how to get rid of kikuyu grass

Struggling with Kikuyu grass taking over your lawn? Discover how to get rid of Kikuyu grass effectively and reclaim your turf with our expert guidance.

To eliminate Kikuyu grass:
1. Manual Removal:Pull out the grass, including roots.
2. Use Herbicides:Apply selective herbicides for targeted control.
3. Mulching: Smother kikuyu with a thick layer of mulch.
4. Regular Mowing: Keep the grass short to weaken it over time.

Explore these methods in-depth and discover additional tips to effectively combat and prevent the resurgence of Kikuyu grass in your outdoor space. Your journey to a healthier lawn begins here.

What Type of Grass is Kikuyu?

Pennisetum clandestinum kikuyu grass is a warm-season, fast-growing perennial grass native to East Africa. Known for its aggressive spreading through rhizomes and stolons, it thrives in warm climates and exhibits exceptional tolerance to various soil conditions. Recognized for its vibrant green color and resilience, Kikuyu is often used in lawns, sports fields, and pastures.

Kikuyu Grass Problems

Kikuyu grass, while robust and visually appealing, presents several challenges for homeowners and gardeners. Understanding these problems is crucial for effective lawn management.

  1. Invasiveness: Kikuyu’s aggressive growth via rhizomes and stolons makes it invasive, quickly taking over lawns and displacing other grass varieties.
  2. Water Needs: Despite its resilience, Kikuyu grass demands substantial water, making it less water-efficient compared to other grass types.
  3. Thatch Buildup: Kikuyu is prone to thatch accumulation—a dense layer of dead grass—requiring regular dethatching to maintain a healthy lawn.
  4. Shade Intolerance: Struggling in shaded areas, Kikuyu prefers full sun, limiting its suitability for landscapes with significant tree cover.
  5. Winter Dormancy: Kikuyu grass tends to go dormant in colder months, turning brown, which can affect its aesthetic appeal during winter.

Pictures of kikuyu grass

how to get rid of kikuyu grass

How to Get Rid of Kikuyu Grass (Step-by-Step Guide)

Follow these steps to effectively eliminate Kikuyu grass from your lawn:

1. Manual Removal:

This one of the ways on how to get rid of kikuyu grass naturally;

  • Wear gloves.
  • Pull Kikuyu grass, ensuring to extract roots.
  • Dispose of removed grass to prevent regrowth.

2. Herbicide Application:

  • Choose a selective herbicide for grass control.
  • Follow label instructions for proper dilution and application.
  • Apply herbicide to Kikuyu grass, focusing on affected areas.

3. Mulching:

  • Cover Kikuyu-infested areas with a thick layer of organic mulch.
  • This deprives the grass of sunlight, inhibiting growth.

4. Regular Mowing:

  • Keep your lawn mowed regularly to weaken Kikuyu over time.
  • Maintain a consistent mowing height to stress the grass.

5. Overseed with Desired Grass:

  • Introduce desired grass seeds to compete with Kikuyu.
  • Ensure proper watering and care for new grass establishment.

How to get rid of kikuyu grass naturally   

 Here are the methods to how to remove kikuyu grass naturally :

  • Smothering: Use thick mulch (wood chips, newspaper) to block sunlight
  • Vinegar Solution: Mix white vinegar and water (1:1) with a few drops of dish soap, then spray
  • Boiling Water: Pour boiling water over the grass (use with caution)
  • Corn Gluten Meal: Apply as a natural pre-emergent herbicide in spring
  • Organic Herbicides: Look for products with clove oil, citric acid, or fatty acids
  • Repeated Mowing: Regularly cut down to a low height
  • Solarization: Cover the area with a clear plastic tarp during hot summer months

Will roundup kill kikuyu grass?

Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, is a broad-spectrum herbicide that is effective against many types of plants, including grasses. It is likely to kill Kikuyu grass if applied properly. However, Kikuyu grass is known for being resilient, and complete eradication may require repeated applications.

Here are some tips if you decide to use Roundup:

  1. Choose the Right Formulation: Roundup comes in various formulations. For grassy weeds like Kikuyu, a Roundup product designed for grass control may be more effective.
  2. Follow Instructions: Read and follow the instructions on the Roundup product label carefully. Pay attention to the recommended concentration, application method, and safety precautions.
  3. Apply in the Right Conditions: Apply Roundup when the Kikuyu grass is actively growing and under optimal weather conditions. Avoid application during windy days to prevent drift onto desirable plants.
  4. Repeat Applications if Necessary: Kikuyu grass is persistent, and multiple applications may be needed to completely control it. Follow-up treatments may be required to address regrowth.
  5. Consider Alternatives: While Roundup can be effective, consider the potential environmental impact and explore other natural or organic methods if you have concerns about using synthetic herbicides.

FAQS: Kikuyu Grass
How to Get Rid of Kikuyu Grass?

Manual removal, smothering with mulch, vinegar solution, boiling water, corn gluten meal, organic herbicides, repeated mowing, and solarization are natural methods.

Does Kikuyu Grass Go Dormant?

Kikuyu grass tends to remain green year-round in mild climates, but it may go dormant in colder regions during winter.

Is Kikuyu Grass Invasive?

Yes, Kikuyu grass is considered invasive due to its rapid spreading and aggressive growth habits.

What Kills Kikuyu Grass?

Glyphosate-based herbicides like Roundup are effective, but multiple applications may be needed for complete control. Natural methods include vinegar, boiling water, and organic herbicides.


To sum it up, you can deal with Kikuyu grass using natural ways or, if necessary, by using certain chemicals. Knowing how the grass behaves and using the right methods can help you effectively manage it.

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