Mowing Short & Regularly
This is one of the critical steps for controlling red thread in lawns. Mow your grass short at least once a week and more often when needed. This will open the grass up to air circulation, allowing it to breathe better and help prevent disease pressure.
Taller grass has more shade and dense growth, which are necessary for red thread to live and have an excellent environment to spread.
How Can My Lawn Be Treated Once It Has Red Thread
The only products that are available in the professional turf industry are chemical fungicides. However, most of these fungicides tend to act only as a preventative, rather than a cure.
Lawn Master have our own 2 part treatment to cure Red Thread, which is a result of years of testing various products and methods at championship golf courses and football pitches, to see which work most effectively.
How To Protect Your Lawn From Red Thread
The fungus that infects the turf lives in the thatch and soil and can be spread by dead infected plant material and by mowing and other mechanical maintenance. Be sure to clean your lawnmower after cutting your grass to decrease the chances of spreading the disease.
Fungicide applications are usually not necessary in dealing with red thread. The basic treatment for red thread is to fertilize the lawn with the proper amount of nitrogen as part of an ongoing feeding program.
A fertilizer application will often help your turf outgrow the damage and protect it from other potential diseases. But keep this in mind, some turf diseases are aggravated by excessive fertilization, so be sure to have an expert diagnose which disease your lawn is facing before fertilizing begins.
Dont hesitate to connect with the Lush Lawn team for treatment options if you come across it on your lawn. Contact your local Lush Lawn branch to request our services.
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Treating Red Thread Disease
To control the spread of red thread disease and get your lawn looking beautiful and lush again, youll have to treat it with a fungicide. There are several fungicides on the market that prevent the spread of the disease for up to four weeks. You will need to choose a broad-spectrum fungicide that will kill the existing fungus while preventing the spread of red thread disease to other parts of the lawn.
If you can, use the fungicide product when the temperature outside is between 60 and 75 degrees F. Most lawn diseases are going to leave some damaged areas behind and red thread disease is no exception. If you have treated your lawn with fungicide and still have some damaged areas, you will likely need to patch them. Once you have the disease under control and stop seeing red tips on the blades of grass, you can reseed the damaged areas.
With the right care, youll make it harder for red thread to move in and affect your lawn.
How To Control And Treat Red Thread Lawn Disease
One of the more common late spring to early summer diseases on cool-season grasses is Red Thread lawn disease. It is most severe on Kentucky Bluegrass, Perennial Ryegrass and Tall Fescue. There is another lawn disease that occurs at the same time and under the same environmental conditions known as Pink Patch.
The main difference between the two lawn diseases are the fruiting structures. Red Thread takes its name from the red thread-like structures called sclerotia that are produced by the fungus. Pink Patch produces tiny puffs of pink-cottony mycelium that resemble little bits of cotton candy stuck to the grass blades. Of the two diseases, Red Thread is the more common one seen in home lawns. Red Thread may develop when temperatures range from 40 to 75Â°F. Most grass activity occurs when temperatures range 65 to 75Â°F and during periods of cool, cloudy weather with long periods of evening dew.
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What Does It Look Like
You can identify red thread by the pinkish-red strands that extend from the leaf blade tip. Take a look at your lawn early in the morning, when its still moist. You might see what looks like miniature pink cotton balls.
If you take a look at your turf early in the morning when it is still moist, you might find what looks like miniature balls of pink cotton candy. Thats a tell-tale sign.
But it can be mistaken for dollar spot or lawn rust. Thats because the grass is usually tan or light brown beneath the growths. To properly identify the disease, you may need to get on your hands and knees to check it out.
An Annoying Issue But Easy To Deal With
As you can see, red thread can be annoying and unwelcome when it appears in your lawn, but it is far from being the most serious or difficult problem to deal with.
When you notice it, red thread is easy to treat and by following the suggestions in our guide, you will be able to get rid of red thread quickly and efficiently and make sure it doesnt make a comeback any time soon.
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Should I Increase Nitrogen Levels To Cure Red Thread
Its common conception that lack of nutrition or nitrogen are the main causes of Red Thread. This is not entirely true.
Although higher nitrogen levels can be used to burn out the Red Thread and disguise it, this does not cure it. Red Thread can still easily appear on well fertilised lawns.
If your lawn care company is repeatedly applying higher levels of nitrogen fertiliser to your lawn, Red Thread will typically be more difficult to remove. With correct greenkeeping skills and practices, your lawn shouldnt require high levels of nitrogen fertiliser at each visit.
Red Thread Lawn Disease
A closeup of red thread lawn disease.
Lawn diseases are frustrating for every homeowner that desires to maintain the picture-perfect lawn and landscape. Unfortunately, the warmer temperatures of the spring-time that we all love along with frequent rainy periods, creates the perfect storm of environmental conditions to be just right for fungus to grow in the lawn. A frequent spring-time lawn disease observed in many lawns is Red Thread Disease.
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How To Get Rid Of Red Thread Permanently
The best way of permanently getting rid of red thread is to eliminate the conditions that allowed it to develop in the first place. Maintain your lawn well fed all year round, using the right formulation for each season. The So& Mo Performance Liquid Lawn Feed delivers a 12 month plan that takes into consideration periods of growth to ensure your lawn gets the right treatment through the year.
It is also highly important that you maintain good soil condition. Aim to aerate and scarify your lawn at least once a year. By removing thatch, youll allow more air and nutrients to penetrate the soil effectively. You can learn more about aerating, scarifying, and other methods of caring for your lawn by browsing our other blog posts.
Symptoms Of Red Thread
The infected grass will firstly be bleached in color the grass will turn pale cream/white. Not all grass blades will be affected, as non-infected blades may exist next to infected blades. In these circumstances the grass will appear visibly messy. In moist conditions the fungus will form the pink branching threads. Once the threads are well developed the lawn will have reddish/pinkish tinge to it in small patches, these patches may join together to form larger patches.
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What Can I Do To Prevent It And How Can I Cure It
In this case, the prevention and the cure are almost the same. Lawns that arent fed lack nitrogen, and this lack of nitrogen encourages the fungus to take over. Feed your lawn a nitrogen rich fertiliser to cure your red thread problem and to prevent it. We recommend our QUICK RELEASE: Spring / Summer once watered in, this granular feed will set to work on your lawn making it green once again, and red thread free!
How Harmful Is It To Your Lawn
The good news is that red thread wont kill your grass. The disease specifically attacks the leaves and stems of the grass plant. It will not harm the crown or root of the grass, but the areas that are infected will cause your turf to appear wilted.
Its also not aesthetically pleasing and can make your lawn vulnerable to diseases.
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How Do I Get Rid Of Red Thread Disease
Almost any lawn is susceptible to this turf fungus. However, it isnt uncommon for some lawns to have more issues than neighboring properties. Property owners often wonder what can be done to get rid of Red Thread on lawns when it shows up. The remedy is to disrupt the disease triangle so that this fungus stops growing. The disease triangle is used to illustrate how fungi grows on plants, in this particular case, your lawn. The susceptible host are grass plants that are lacking in nitrogen and have started to not grow as aggressively as they have in the months prior. The pathogen is present in the thatch layer of a lawn and impossible to completely remove. When the plant is weak, and the temperature and relative humidity is favorable, Red Thread will begin and continue to grow.
Maintain Healthy Nitrogen Levels In Your Soil
As weve already mentioned, red thread tends to develop in undernourished lawns, so ensuring your grass is always well-fed and that the soil contains the right amount of nitrogen is the first step.
Note that if the nitrogen content is too high, it can also lead to an attack of red thread, so make sure the levels in your soil are just right for healthy grass.
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How Long Does It Take To Go Away
Within a few weeks, you should notice the effects of red thread begin to lessen, i.e less visibility of red needles, and the patches should start to green up again. Of course, this is dependent on the type of fertiliser you choose and how fast it works. If you want the quickest solution make sure to invest in a quick release fertiliser.
Identifying Red Thread Disease
You will usually start seeing red thread in the springtime. In the Pacific Northwest, you often see it well into winter due to the mild and wet climate in that part of the United States. If youve seen prolonged periods of wet and overcast weather, you will see an influx of red thread in your lawn unless pre-emptive measures are taken to prevent its spread. So, how do you identify red thread on your lawn?
If your grass is wet, you will notice a darker red color. A pink color is present when the grass is dry. If you are checking to see if red thread is present in your lawn, check for the red color after you have watered the lawn or in the morning when dew is present.
There are some things other than color that you can check for to make sure you are dealing with red thread. The blades of grass will look ragged compared to healthy grass. They will often look like they are dry and dying. Usually, the blades of grass will have an irregular shape to them.
You dont often see the thread-like strands until the later stages of the disease. The grass will start to exhibit brittle, antler-like strands extending to the grass leaf tips. As red thread disease progresses, you may also see a pink growth on top of the grass blades.
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Positively Identify The Disease As Red Thread
Among the first lawn diseases of the growing season, red thread is extremely common in spring but can appear in fall in and winter as well. Cool, wet weather and prolonged overcast conditions create the ideal environment for it to thrive.
In addition to the pinkish-red color, lawns affected by red thread have grass blades that look ragged and seem to be dying back from the tip of the leaf. The affected grass will appear in irregularly shaped, straw-like patches that range in size from 2 inches to 3 feet in diameter.
The red, thread-like strands that may also be present appear more often in later stages of the disease. Youll notice brittle, antler-like strands extending ¼ inch or more from grass leaf tips. When grass is wet, red thread appears darker red in color when dry, it looks more pink. The best time to look for red thread is in the early morning when theres still dew on the blades. As red thread disease continues to progress, you may also see a pink, gelatinous growth on top of grass blades.
How To Get Rid Of Red Thread In Lawn
1. Proper Fertilization
As mentioned in the preventative section, proper fertilization will help your lawn resist diseases. Using fast-release fertilizer, in particular, will give your lawn the nutrients it needs to produce more healthy grass capable of fighting off the red thread fungus. However, proper application can also help eliminate the Red Thread from the lawn.
2. Watering Appropriately
Watering your lawn 4-5 days per week will keep it healthy and less likely to get infected. Deep and infrequent watering is best. Deep watering will help your lawn get the water it needs in the root zone where fungus cannot live.
Also, watering infrequently will allow the soil to dry out between watering, which also helps prevent disease.
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Red Thread Lawn Fungus On The Move
The thing you need to remember is that most turf fungus is NOT a major concern. It will go away on its own with proper care. The first line of defense is aeration with compost top-dressing and broadcast seeding to rejuvenate and add missing nutrients to your soil. Secondly, timely fertilizer and fungicide applications will ensure the health of your lawn throughout the entire growing season. The third component to ensure a lush lawn is keeping up with weekly maintenance, such as a regular irrigation schedule and consistent mowing.
If you are seeing anything that looks like Red Thread on your turf, and you are not currently on our fertilization program, please let us know! The sooner the lawn is treated the better the outcome.
Get Rid Of Red Thread
Due to the mild weather we have experienced, our Lawn Operatives are currently noticing an increase in Red Thread across lawns in the U.K. Were here to help you identify the disease in your lawn and to explain how we can help get rid of it!
What does Red Thread look like?
- Reddish/brown patches of decaying grass
- Fine red needles protruding from the blades of grass
- Pink/reddish candy-floss like particles around the base of the leaf
- Infected blades mixed with healthy blades giving the lawn a ragged appearance
In severe cases, the grass may look scorched or yellowed in irregularly shaped or circular patches from 5 to 50cm in diameter. The patches may be widely scattered or, if close together, may amalgamate into larger spots.
How did my lawn get Red Thread?
Although high humidity is the main cause, it can also be seen in lawns affected by stress related issues such as a poor cutting regime, drought, thatch, compaction, or low nutrition .
How can GreenThumb remove Red Thread?
Generally, if our customers are receiving their regular fertiliser treatments this reduces the incidence of it. However, if the problem arises due to the conditions described above, we may recommend a liquid tonic.
If Red Thread does occur, we can treat it at the same time as we apply the scheduled NutraGreen treatments to your lawn. This will ensure that your lawn has the best chance of recovery.
What can I expect after my treatment?
Did you know?
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Red Thread Lawn: How Do You Prevent It
Many diseases can affect lawns, but one of the most common in the UK is red thread. This fungal infection can leave unsightly patches of discoloured grass, and when it strikes, you will want to take care of it as quickly as possible.
To help, heres our guide to red thread lawn to explain what the disease is, how to identify it and what to do when it appears, allowing you to nurse your lawn back to health and prevent red thread from returning in the future.
If you want a preview of some of the stuff were going to be talking about as well as some extra tips and hints about dealing with it you can check out this video before reading on.
What Is Red Thread And Pink Patch
Like I said at the beginning, Red Thread is the most common lawn disease in the UK.
It can appear at any time of the year but is most visible in summer. It will often appear in conjunction with another disease called Pink Patch.
Its a fungal disease caused by a fungus called Laetisaria fuciformis. This fungus is present in nearly all lawns, nearly all of the time.
Chances are that your lawn has even had a Red Thread infection in the past and youve never even noticed it. But when conditions are right, youll notice blotchy, pinky patches of dead grass as it kills the grass leaves .
Although it can infect any and all lawns, it particularly likes lawns that contain fescues, particularly Red Fescue, as well as bents, perennial rye-grass, and annual meadow grass.
The good news is that Red Thread doesnt cause significant damage like other fungal diseases so it can be fixed fairly easily.
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