You’re using your electric lawn mower regularly, watering on a schedule, and using the best lawn fertilizers. Even with all of this care, you might still find patches that look dead or discolored.
In attempts to restore these areas of the lawn, you might try to water more or you might use some type of lawn repair formula. These simple solutions might work to address some issues with dead or brown grass. However, there are lawn diseases that will get worse if you try these common solutions.
If that is the case, your lawn is probably infected by some type of grass fungus. Many of these grass diseases will actually feed off the extra water and fertilizer you apply, and this could result in more discoloration or dead spots in the lawn.
In this post, we are going to look at how to fix brown patches in a lawn and other common lawn diseases. Among the most common grass diseases are red thread, summer patch, powdery mildew, and dollar spots.
Brown Patch Treatment
As the name suggests, brown patch is a lawn disease that causes brown patches in the turf. It is caused by the fungus Rhizoctonia and usually results in circular brown patches that can range in size from a few inches to a few feet in diameter.
Brown patch is a grass disease that tends to do well in areas with high temperatures and high humidity. Overwatering, poor soil drainage, and high nitrogen levels can also contribute to issues with brown patch.
The first step in managing brown patch is to prevent its spread. Remove the grass clippings from the infected area when you mow. If you have a mower that bags as it cuts the grass, it can help with containing the problem. You should also avoid overwatering your grass and reduce the nitrogen in the fertilizers you use.
Lawn fungicides can be useful as a preventative measure, but they are not very effective as a brown patch treatment when the disease is already established. If you have had issues with brown patch in the past, you should consider applying a fungicide around late spring before the fungus can take hold in your lawn.
Managing Red Thread
Red thread is a type of grass disease that creates reddish patches in the grass. When you look at the grass closely, you will see red or pink thread-like fibers on the blades. Red thread can occur in a wide range of climates, but it is most common in areas that experience a lot of rainfall.
Grass will be more susceptible to red thread when the soil lacks nitrogen. To address this lawn disease, the best solutions are to use a nitrogen-rich fertilizer and reduce watering in the affected area.
If you want to control the watering in an area that has red thread, you should stop using your sprinkler and instead water the area manually. Using a tool like 20V Hydroshot Portable Power Cleaner can be useful, as it has a watering setting that can make it easier to prevent overwatering.
Fixing Summer Patch Dead Spots
Summer patch is a lawn disease that results in straw-like areas in the lawn. This is caused when the fungus Magnaporthe poae infects the roots, making it difficult for the grass to absorb water and nutrients. If it progresses enough, it can kill an area of the lawn, so you may need to work on how to fix dead grass after addressing the infection.
Summer patch does well in high heat, humidity, and areas with heavy soil compaction. Over-fertilizing can also contribute to issues with summer patch. Once it is established, summer patch can be difficult to get rid of. To prevent this grass fungus, avoid over-fertilizing and over-watering. You can also apply a lawn fungus treatment in late spring as a preventative measure.
Powdery mildew is another fungal grass disease which makes the grass look like it’s been sprinkled with a white powder. This plant disease usually does well in areas with high humidity and on lawns that do not get enough sunlight.
Fungicides can work well to get rid of powdery mildew temporarily, but it will probably come back if you do not do anything to improve the conditions. Removing trees or shrubs that block the sun can be a good way to prevent this lawn disease. You should also avoid watering late in the day.
Lawn Fungus Treatments for Dollar Spots
Dollar spots are small circular patches in the lawn that can get up to a few inches in diameter. This is a grass disease that is the result of a fungal infection. The fungus tends to thrive in lawns that are undernourished and areas where the air is moist but the soil is dry.
The first step in preventing dollar spots is to make sure you are providing your lawn with enough nitrogen. Along with that, you want to water your lawn deeply a few times a week. You may also want to consider aerating your lawn to help water and nutrients reach roots.
Grass diseases can be very difficult to get under control once they are established in your lawn. That is why you should focus on prevention. Develop a lawn care plan based on the type of grass you have and the conditions in your yard. Your lawn won’t be as vulnerable if you are mowing your lawn to the correct height, providing the right amount of water and using the right fertilizer.
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