Avoid Excessive Moisture On Grass
Prolonged periods of excessive moisture on the grass leaves are the biggest contributors to the development of brown patch disease. Excessive moisture on the grass can be caused by a number of reasons, including overwatering, dew, or guttation, which is a term referring to the water that is exuded during the night by the grass blades. To reduce the amount of water you add to your lawn, avoid watering daily, and instead base your watering schedule on the current weather conditions and the ad-hoc water requirements of the grass and soil. Also, the time of day that you water the lawn will have an effect on brown patch fungus growth watering early in the morning before sunrise enables you to remove large droplets of dew and water from the grass blades, thus speeding up the drying of the foliage once the sun has risen. Try not to water after sunrise or during the late afternoon to evening, as this increases the amount of time that the lawn is wet.
Whats Causing Brown Patches On My Lawn
Finding brown patches on the green lawn you work so hard to care for can be disappointing and distressing. Unfortunately, Midwest summers lead not only to increased use of the outdoor spaces around your home but also to summer lawn diseases that can devastate even the best-maintained lawns. Lawn diseases like brown spot, Pythium blight and dollar spot love warm, humid weather and thrive during the months of May through September. But they arent the only causes of brown patches in your lawn.
Learn more about all the situations that can leave brown patches in your lawn and what to do if your brown patches turn out to be one of the three most common fungal diseases that attack grass in the summer.
Cultural Management: Preventing Brown Patch Lawn Disease
Since high levels of fast release nitrogen increase disease activity, Spring-Green uses a correct blend of fertilizers for lawn fertilizing during the warmer months. Mow less frequently during periods of hot and humid weather, this reduces stress and limits the movement of grass disease by being carried on your feet or mower. If possible, increase light and air penetration, or movement, by pruning overhanging trees and shrubs. During cooler seasons, open up the thatch layer with power core aeration. If these cultural cures fail, a preventative fungicide lawn treatment program may have to be applied to control this most damaging of lawn diseases.
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How To Maintain Your Lawn To Help Reduce Brown Patch
A healthy lawn is a stronger lawn and will be better able to withstand fungal diseases like brown patch. Follow these guidelines:
- Plant disease-resistant varieties and seed mixtures. For example, Scotts® Turf Builder® Grass Seed Heat-Tolerant Blue® Mix for Tall Fescue Lawns combines improved turf-type tall fescue varieties with a heat-tolerant Kentucky bluegrass to help reduce the impact of brown patch on your lawn.
- Reduce the amount of time the grass blades are wet. When needed, water during the early morning hours. Dont water between 7:00 PM and 3:00 AM, as the blades will stay wet overnight.
- Feed the lawn regularly with Scotts® Turf Builder® Lawn Food. Be sure to follow label directions, as overfed lawns are more susceptible to brown patch.
- Unless it is a controlled-release product, dont apply nitrogen fertilizer when hot, humid weather is expected .
Since wet conditions help promote brown patch, make sure your lawn has good drainage and air flow, and consider pruning overgrown trees to prevent too much shade and increase air movement for faster drying. It may also be helpful to aerate and dethatch the lawn every 1 to 3 years to allow air, water, and nutrients to move more freely into the soil.
An Ounce Of Prevention
1. Soak your pets favorite areas in your lawn to remove salts from the root zone before they kill the grass.
2. Fertilize your lawn in the spring to boost the overall color and mask the darker green dog spots.
3. Train your pet to urinate in a designated area. Replace or repair the grass in this area annually or cover it with mulch.
4. Keep your pet well hydrated to make its urine less concentrated.
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How To Patch Bare Spots With Sod
For a quicker fix than reseeding, try using sod. Sod is a fairly inexpensive way to repair bare spots of dead grass.
- Remove Debris
Similar to reseeding, remove any leaves, dead grass, weeds, or debris from the brown patch area before getting started.
- Till the Soil
Using a garden hoe or rake, till the soil a few inches deep to break up the solid pieces of dirt.
- Measure the Area of the Brown Patch
Use a tape measure to evaluate the width and length of your brown patch. Then, purchase a piece of sod from your local gardening store that will fully cover the area.
- Select the Right Turfgrass
Be sure to select the correct turfgrass sod for your lawn, identify the grass you have growing, and try to match this when buying pieces of sod.
- Cut the Sod
Using a sharp shovel or garden tool, cut a piece of sod that is slightly larger than the area you are covering.
- Lightly Fertilize
Applying a small amount of fertilizer to the soil before laying sod will encourage the roots to establish and anchor down the sod piece.
- Firmly Place the Sod Piece
Place the sod on top of the brown patch matching the shape as best you can. Compress the sod down into the lawn by tamping it down with a rake and then immediately walking on it.
- Water the Sod Immediately
The sod will need more water than regular seed grass. Keep the area moist by watering two to three times a day if needed. Monitor the edges of the new sod they will dry out first.
- Hold Off on Weed Control
- Assume Regular Lawn Treatment
How To Get Rid Of Brown Patch Fungus On Lawn
There are some helpful techniques to reduce the chances of being infected by Brown Patch Fungus, or limit and manage the disease. A healthy turf is much more resistant to disease. By watering your lawn on an as needed basis, rather than just a set schedule, and considering the time of year and rainfall, you can better manage your turf to ensure it is receiving the proper amount of water. Frequent mowing at the recommended mow height is critical to the health of the turf. It is very important that your turf is not cut too short, or scalped. Design your landscape so the turf receives the proper amount of shade. And lastly, proper fertilization from a professional can keep your turf thick, green, and healthy. Maintaining a healthy landscape will make your lawn much less susceptible to disease. To hear more about the specific needs of your landscape, call Hulett Environmental Services for a free diagnosis and recommendation. However, sometimes even with the best landscape management, disease cannot be prevented, and professional treatment is needed.
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How To Get Rid Of Brown Patch Pythium Blight & Dollar Spot Fungus
Brown patch, Pythium blight and dollar spot diseases can damage or even kill your lawn. Pythium blight will kill areas of the lawn overnight. Brown patch and dollar spot, dont usually kill large areas of the lawn but they certainly can kill large areas if the disease grows over a long enough period. Because these diseases thrive in warm, humid conditions, its important to treat the active disease with a fungicide that will control future problems. A correct diagnosis is essential because each of the diseases requires a specific fungicide.
Can A Brown Lawn Be Saved
Generally, yes. If the lawn is brown because it has gone dormant, it will bounce back by itself and turn green again during its growing season. However, if your lawn has turned brown all over due to drought, there is no way to revive it.
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How To Treat Brown Patches In Your Yard
Years ago, scientists took a soil sample from deep below the ice in Antarctica and found something: brown patch.
Brown patch is a fungus causing brown circles in your lawn during the hot humid months of summer. Why did they find it in Antarctica then? Because brown patch can remain dormant for many years. The reason you notice it now is because it has become active, the good news is we can control it!
Other Common Summer Lawn Fungus Diseases
Large Patch is very similar to brown patch, caused by another strain of the Rhizoctonia solani fungus, the Clemson HGIC says. Affected grass will show the same symptoms thinning patches of light brown grass. Symptoms will vary greatly depending on soil conditions and grass types.
Dollar spot is also caused by a fungal pathogen, presenting smaller brown spots.
Red thread thrives in cool, humid conditions such as the Pacific Northwest, mostly in nutrient-poor soils, according to a guide from manufacturer Scotts. Youll know youve got it if you see thin red hairs or strands extending from the grass blades themselves.
Rust diseases appear as irregular light-green or yellow patches on the lawn, but looking closely will reveal orange-yellow rust spores on individual grass blades. Proper fertilization in the spring can help prevent it.
Summer patch usually appears between June and September, during periods of high humidity when daytime temperatures climb above 85, showing up in the form of irregular brown patches, rings and crescent shapes.
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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 wont 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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Preventing Brown Patch: Do The Basics
Good basic lawn care practices represent the best way to prevent brown patch and other lawn diseases.
the best way to prevent brown patch or large patch in the home lawn is by following good lawn care practices, Clemson HGIC says.
Once you have an outbreak, you really cant treat symptoms, Patton says. Whats already been affected wont be cured overnight.
The best defense for your lawn, as with other pest and disease problems, is a good foundation, he said. the best way to prevent brown patch or large patch in the home lawn is by following good lawn care practices, according to Clemsons guide.
Attention to cultural practices taking proper care of your lawn with regular mowing, proper fertilizing, irrigation, air circulation and weed control help prevent brown patch.
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Brown Patch Fungus: How To Get Rid Of Brown Patch Fungus Lawn Disease
If youve noticed that the grass is turning yellow or brown in circular patches throughout your lawn, its likely that youre dealing with an infestation of brown patch fungus. This fungus causes whats known as brown patch lawn disease, and can destroy small to large areas of what would otherwise be healthy, green grass. It thrives when the weather is hot and humidity levels are high.
In order to get rid of brown patch fungus, you can apply a fungicide designed for brown patch control throughout your lawn. There are also several measures you can take to prevent the fungus from returning or spreading, such as limiting the use of nitrogen fertilizers, improving soil drainage, and improving air circulation. Read through this guide to find out everything you need to know about brown patch control and prevention to get rid of brown patch fungus for good.
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.
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How To Get Rid Of Brown Patch
You cant simply wait for it to go away. The fungi survive the winter in plant debris and then enter the leaf tissue of grass blades through cuts caused by things like mowing. So, once brown patch shows up, be ready to take care of it immediately! It spreads fast. The best solution is a fungicide lawn treatment program that will address the problem directly.
Also, during treatment, mow your lawn a little less often. Every time you cut it, it needs to heal, which gives the disease an opportunity to spread.
Brown Patch Loves Hot Summer
Brown Patch is the most damaging turf grass disease
Brown patch is really a summer lawn disease thats caused by a fungus called Rhizoctonia. The disease begins to show growth when temperatures reach 65°, but the most active growth of brown patch lawn disease occurs at temperatures of 80-85° when humidity levels are very high.
The fungi survive the winter in plant debris and enter the leaf tissue through wounds caused by mowing and through the pores when daytime temperatures get into the 70s. Infected turf grass can go quite a while without showing damage because its actively growing. But, if the daytime temperatures reach the mid 80s and nighttime air temperatures stay above 70°, the grass will be under stress. Then, lawn disease damage can become visible almost immediately.
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Symptoms Of Brown Spots In Bermuda Grass
- Brown patches on your Bermuda grass lawn may start small but will increase in size as the seasons get warmer.
- Often, these spots have a ring-like appearance, with the brown spots forming an outer circle enclosing a smaller, inner circle with live grass.
- Every grass blade acquires this tan color, with only the crown reserving the original lush green color.
Test And Adjust Soil Ph
It has been found that brown patch disease can be more severe in lawns that have soil with a pH level of less than 6.0. You can test your soil pH using a home testing kit or by sending a sample of soil off to a professional laboratory. The results of this test will tell you the soils pH level, in addition to the amounts of nutrients present in the soil. If your soil is less than 6.0, you will need to add a pH adjusting material to raise its pH, lime being the material most commonly used for this purpose. Also, make sure that your soil has a high level of potassium as indicated by the tested sample. Apply a potassium-rich fertilizer if necessary.
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How To Identify Brown Patch
If your lawn has begun to yellow rapidly, take a closer look at the size and shape of the affected areas. With brown patch, they are likely to be roughly circular, though a bit irregular. Patch sizes can range from a few inches to several feet in diameter. If brown patch has been active for a while, the spots might also look like patches of good grass with rings of dead or thin grass around them.
Besides yellow, do you notice any other colors in the patchy areas? Brown patch patches can be darker purple or burgundy on the outside, for example. Other signs include irregular tan spots bordered by a darker outline on grass blades, brown and shriveled blades, rotting at the base of the blades, darker blades that look water-soaked, and possibly white, cobweb-like growth around the blades .
How To Repair Lawn Spots Damaged By Brown Patch
Once brown patch has been treated and is under control, its time to fix up any bare spots left by the disease. A simple way to do this is to use an three-in-one patch and repair mix like Scotts® EZ Seed®. Formulated to absorb water to keep the seed moist and protected, it has everything you need to patch and repair bare spots. Just be sure to choose the formula designed for your grass type, follow the directions on the bottle, and apply during early spring or fall for best results.
To thicken up lawns that have had large areas thinned out by brown patch, overseed your entire lawn during the late summer or early fall with Scotts® Turf Builder® ThickR Lawn Sun & Shade or Scotts® Turf Builder® ThickR Lawn Tall Fescue Mix . Both formulas contain a combination of seed, controlled-release fertilizer, and soil improvers.
With a little care and Scotts by your side, your problems with brown patch will be a thing of the past.
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