• Paul Clayton

Diagnosing 3 Common Diseases in Your Lawn

Diseases are the exception for most lawns, not the rule. And all spots and patches of yellow and brown do not immediately indicate that there is a disease present in your lawn.

Turf grass diseases are caused by a very small number of fungi, while the vast majority of fungi that are already present in your lawn are very beneficial. That’s why correctly identifying the disease is essential. Once you know what the disease is, you can get to work controlling it. Unfortunately controlling is the only option possible. Unless you are willing to remove and replace the sod & the top 12-18 inches of soil the fungi will remain in the soil. The goal is to keep the number of active fungi at a level which allows your lawn to be at its best.

Fairy Ring

This disease affects all warm season grasses and is generally controlled with chemical treatments. There are 3 types of Fairy Ring to look out for:

  • Zone of dead grass inside a dark green zone (often weed infested)

  • Dark band of green grass (sometime accompanied by mushrooms)

  • Ring of mushrooms with no dark bands

Brown Patch

These rings of yellow or brown turf appear around areas of healthy green turf. They are generally triggered by excessive rainfall or over-watering, or in periods of high humidity. Brown patch can be tricky to diagnose, but once identified can be easily controlled with chemical applications.

Grey Leaf Spot

Grey Leaf Spot is most often seen from late Spring, through early Fall. It starts with pinhead-sized spots that appear olive green to brown in color. They enlarge to form circular to oblong spots with brown margins throughout the grass blades. Grey Leaf Spot can be controlled with an application of a specially formulated fungicide.

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