This section is from the book "A Manual Of Weeds", by Ada E. Georgia. Also available from Amazon: A Manual Of Weeds.
Native. Perennial. Propagates by seeds.
Time of bloom: July to September.
Seed-time: Late August to October.
Range: Massachusetts to Illinois and southward to Florida and
Texas. Most abundant and troublesome in the South. Habitat: Meadows, pastures; grain, corn, and cotton fields.
Broom Sedge is a southern weedy grass which is extending its range northward, It grows in thick tufts, the stems attaining a height of three to five feet, very light green when young and turning to a brownish yellow as they ripen, at all times very conspicuous among other grasses. Stems slender, flattened at the base, and sparingly branched above. Sheaths smooth except for a slight hairiness at the edge; leaves six inches to a foot long and less than a quarter-inch wide, with rough edges and upper surface somewhat hairy near the base. The flowering spikes are usually in pairs, sometimes in threes, about an inch long, protruding from smooth spathes which are longer; they are slender and flexuous, the joints and pedicels covered with long, silky hairs. Seeds light yellow, about an eighth of an inch long, oat-like in form, with a tuft of fine hair at the base, and at the tip an awn nearly half an inch in length. These hairy attachments help the seeds to be widely sown by the winds.
In newly infested ground it will pay to grub out the tufts when they are first observed, their light color noticeably contrasting with other grasses. In any case they should be cut while in early bloom, or even before flowering in order to make certain that no seeds may be developed. But if seeds have ripened and fallen, burn over the ground so as to destroy such as are on its surface, and put the field under cultivation in order to kill the roots, following the cultivated crop with clover. In localities where this weed is most aggressive, short rotations, with very thorough tillage, are necessary in order to prevent it from possessing the land.