Torpedograss Biology and Management in Turf1

J. Bryan Unruh, Ramon G. Leon, and Darcy E. P. Telenko 2

Torpedograss (Panicum repens) is a perennial grass with robust, creeping, sharply pointed rhizomes. Stems are stiff and erect with leaves that are folded or flat and sparsely hairy on the upper surface. Torpedograss seedheads are stiff and have ascending or appressed branches. Reproduction occurs primarily by rhizomes. Torpedograss is mainly found in the Gulf Coast region of the United States from Florida west to Texas. Control of torpedograss is limited and may require the use of non-selective herbicides, such as glyphosate, followed by resodding to eliminate it from severely infested areas.

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Figure 1. 

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Figure 2. 

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Figure 3. 

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Figure 4. 

Herbicide Options for Controlling Torpedograss in Florida Turfgrass

(Always refer to the label for specific uses, application rates, and turfgrass tolerance)

Bermudagrass

  • Preemergence: none

  • Postemergence: quinclorac, trifloxysulfuron

St. Augustinegrass

  • Preemergence: none

  • Postemergence: none

Centipedegrass

  • Preemergence: none

  • Postemergence: none

Bahiagrass

  • Preemergence: none

  • Postemergence: none

Seashore Paspalum

  • Preemergence: none

  • Postemergence: quinclorac

Zoysiagrass

Preemergence: none

Postemergence: quinclorac, trifloxysulfuron

Perennial Ryegrass

  • Preemergence: none

  • Postemergence: none

Refer to the publication Pest Control Guide for Turfgrass Managers at http://turf.ufl.edu/pdf/2012_UF_Pest_Control_Guide.pdf for brand names associated with chemical names listed.

Footnotes

1. This document is ENH1126, one of a series of the Environmental Horticulture Department, UF/IFAS Extension. Original publication date June 2009. Revised February 2013 and April 2016. Visit the EDIS website at https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu.
2. J. Bryan Unruh, professor, Environmental Horticulture Department; Ramon Leon, assistant professor, Agronomy Department; and Darcy E. P. Telenko, former postdoctoral research associate; UF/IFAS West Florida Research and Education Center, Jay, FL 32565.