What Happened To My Lawn Brown Patches Common Causes And What To Do About Them
The dreaded brown patch. No lawn is immune. From lawns receiving minimal care to those that are perfectly tended by their owners, patches of dead or dying grass can appear seemingly overnight. Why? What causes these brown spots?;
We get this question a lot! Here are some answers.
Watering too Little ; ; ; Underwatering and overwatering are both probable causes for brown or dying grass. Underwatering creates drought-like conditions when there isnt enough rain to keep roots alive, and causes grass to die off. Yes, grass naturally goes dormant after a few weeks without water, and most lawns can tolerate drought conditions for a short time . However, extended periods of hot dry conditions like we can see here in late summer may kill a lawn.
Too much water can also be a problem. Daily watering can lead to overly saturated soil if sprinklers are left on too long. Overwatering like this will suffocate the grass and stunt root growth. Conversely, frequent shallow irrigation can also result in a weak root system that is susceptible to drought and disease.
Ideally, lawns should be watered deeply averaging 1 to 1 ½ of water a week depending on the temperatures.
Poor Irrigation CoverageBrown patches can also be caused when an irrigation system isnt properly adjusted to account for the different zones within a lawn. Poor irrigation coverage can lead to some spots being overwatered, green, and soggy while leaving other spots to dry out and go dormant.;
Can Grass Recover From Fungus
In most instances the grass will recover, but it may take two to three weeks. The fungal inoculum will persist indefinitely in the soil, and there is no way to eliminate it from a lawn. The fungus likes extended periods of wetness, so dont water in the evening as water on the leaves will last through the night.
How To Treat Brown Patches In My Lawn
If you are wondering how to treat brown patches in my grass then I have good news for you. You can easily and safely get rid of these brown spots in my grass using natural methods.
Many people are not aware that they can get rid of brown patches in their grass using natural methods because they are not aware of all the possible home remedies that can help them cure this problem effectively.
There are some simple yet effective steps you can follow that can help you get rid of brown patches in my grass quickly and safely.
When you are trying to eliminate brown patches in my grass using natural methods, you need to remember that you must keep your hands clean as well.
The next step you need to take is to wash all the leaves from your plants and trees, as well as any flowers that are affected by brown patches. This will also help you keep your lawn clean and healthy.
The next step is to add a mixture of one part of water and two parts of white vinegar to your garden soil. This will make your soil a lot more alkaline, which will help your lawn and plants.
The third thing you need to do is to dig out the roots of your grasses and plants which have brown spots. After doing this, you need to wash off the brown spots on your grass with a garden hose.
Watering your grass properly and improving air circulation around the soil can help curtail the spread of brown patches in grass.
Don’t Miss: Can You Hydroseed Over An Existing Lawn
Does Brown Patch In Grass Go Away On Its Own
Is it possible for brown patches to go away on its own?;
The first thing that you should do to treat the brown patch in your lawn is to see a plant doctor about this kind of problem.
If you dont see a doctor about it, try to see the doctor about the root cause of it. Do you know the reason why your lawn is green or yellow?
If not, try to find out the reason behind it. It could be caused by too much fertilization, poor watering, too much weed growth, and other things. If you do not get rid of the root cause of it, the problem will not go away on its own.
The next thing that you should do to treat the brown patch in your lawn is to make some changes in your lifestyle. Try to improve the amount of time that you spend on your lawn. If you spend more time on it, then there would be a possibility that you will not need any chemicals to treat the brown patch.
Another thing that you can do to treat the brown patch in your lawn is to use a fertilizer that is rich in nitrogen and phosphorus.
Make sure that it will not damage your lawn or flowers or trees. You can get fertilizers at local garden stores. But do not use the ones that contain any form of harmful chemical.
Last but not least, you can treat the brown patch in your lawn by using some mulch materials. These types of materials help in increasing the growth of the grass and they help in reducing the amount of weeds that grow on it.
What Causes Brown Spots In The Lawn
Discover the most common causes of brown patches in your yard and how to treat them.
It can be alarming ;and frustrating to see brown spots ruining what would otherwise be a beautiful green stretch of grass, especially if youre not sure how they got there or what to do about them. Brown spots in the lawn can show up for many different reasons, so the first step toward treating them is to identify the cause of the problem. Below are the most common causes of brown spots in the lawn and how to treat them so you can get your lush green lawn back.
Brown spots due to fungal problems usually show up as irregular patches. If the disease has been active for a while, the inside of the patch may recover, leaving a ring of dead grass around it. Extremely rainy or humid weather can encourage fungal outbreaks, as can lack of sunlight and poor air circulation. Although you cant control the weather, there is something you can do to protect against fungus. ApplyScotts® DiseaseExLawn Fungicide according to the label directions to not only treat active diseases, but also to prevent future problems from listed fungi.
Dog Urine Burns
Dead spots can also occur in the lawn when annual weeds like crabgrass, annual bluegrass, and foxtail begin to die back. This is a natural cycle that can be avoided with proper lawn maintenance and quickly patched withScotts® EZ Seed® Patch & Repair. As always, be sure to follow the directions on the label.
You May Like: How To Keep Lawn Green In Summer
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.;
When To Aerate Your Lawn
You want to aerate the lawn when your grass is in its peak growing period so it can recover quicklythink;early spring or fall for cool-season grasses, and late spring through early summer for warm-season grasses. If you have high-traffic areas or heavy clay soil, you will want to aerate every year. If you have sandy soil or your lawn is growing well, aerating the lawn can happen;every 2-3 years.
Recommended Reading: Who Sells Murray Lawn Mower Parts
A Healthy Lawn In Your Future
How to repair the brown or dead spots in your lawn will depend upon what caused them in the first place. Weve already mentioned some potential repairs depending upon the causes but a lawn care professional can help you determine which steps are right for you in order to get your lawn on its way to better health.
You might also want to consider some healthy practices to keep your lawn in good shapeafter addressing some of its specific concerns. Getting on a regular lawn care program can help promote a healthier lawn and prevent some of these problems from happening in the first place. Thats because a healthy lawn will provide the best possible defense against disease, pests, and environmental stressors.
While some problems are difficult to avoid, the better shape that your lawn is, the better it will perform. Generally, that means reducing and ultimately eliminating brown spots and letting beautiful, green grass fill in. With the right care, your lawn can be on its way to looking its best.
Are you ready to get rid of dead or brown patches in your Allentown, Bethlehem, or Easton, PA lawn? Get in touch with us to get some free expert advice and find out more about our lawn care programs which include three lawn care pricing options to give you the lush lawn youre looking for.
Ready to get started?
Should You Water Brown Patch
The rest of the year the brown patch fungus is in a dormant state in the soil. Brown patch infects only the leaf blades. If you must water, extend the interval between irrigations to let the turf and soil dry out. Water the turf in the morning, instead of in the evening, so the grass blades do not stay wet overnight.
You May Like: What Is Pre Emergent Lawn Care
How To Prevent Brown Spots
The safest approach to stopping those brown spots is to focus on the lawn and give it all the TLC it needs to be resistant to the urine. Focus on the soil pH levels, a watering schedule, aeration, fertilizers, and the type of grass you have, suggests Dr. Petryk.
Dr. Petryk also provides the following tips to help prevent the brown spots:
- Use a leash to control where your dog urinates
- Water the lawn right after your dog urinates to dilute the nitrogen on the grass
- Dilute your dogs urine by encouraging them to drink more water. You can use ice cubes, very dilute juices, diluted coconut water, or watered down food. However, the more your dog drinks, the more it will have to urinate, so beware of accidents in the house!
- Try a different high quality dog food. Sometimes this helps, as it might alter the pH or nitrogen content of the dogs urine. Talk to your veterinarian about which diet could be best for your dog.
NaturalLawn of America, makers of safe and effective, organic-based lawn care since 1987, deals with dog spots all of the time with their lawn care clients.
Bryan Kratz says the one sure-fire way to prevent the spots is to train your dog to pee somewhere else. If you create a patch of area out of gravel or mulch in your backyard for your dog to urinate and train them to pee there you will be able to prevent any future dog spot issues in the lawn.
There is one product on the market that is all-natural and does not involve chemicals of any way: Dog Rocks.
Keep It Under Control
The good news is that your turf can recover from brown patch. The bad news? You may have to wait until the active growing season to see an improvement in appearance. While a fungicide application can help prevent spread to other areas, spots that have rotted will need to regrow.
Meanwhile, steps should be taken to ensure youre not transferring the fungus to healthy parts of your lawn. Affected areas should not be mowed, as that could cause diseased clippings to deposit elsewhere, spreading the infection. You should also avoid walking over the area so your shoes dont transport the spores. Finally, its important to not apply fertilizer during an outbreak. Sure, youll feed your lawn, but youll also feed the fungus, too.
Because brown or yellow spots can be the result of a number of causes, its important to have your lawn assessed by an experienced landscape professional. If brown patch is confirmed, proper treatment is critical. Self-diagnosis and treatment could make the problem worse. Our teams are experienced in treating brown patch, and can help make the process stress-free.;Request a free quote;or give us a call at .
Read Also: How Do You Kill Weeds In Your Lawn
Human And Animal Damage
Unfortunately, its very easy for us to damage lawns. Some common causes of brown spots include:
Dull Mower: Dull mower blades tear your grass, causing damage and gradual death to the grass.
Remedy: Sharpen your blades in fall and spring. After mowing, examine your grass to see if the mower is cutting cleanly.
Scalping: If your mower blade is set too low or there are lumps in the lawn, it can cut the grass too short and cause damage.
Remedy: Practice proper mowing techniques by raising your mower blades, and smooth out high spots by digging up the sod, removing some of the soil underneath, and replacing the sod.
Chemicals: Gasoline, fertilizer, herbicides, and pesticides can cause dead spots if spilled. If fertilizer is applied unevenly or incorrectly, it can burn the grass. Even insect repellents can burn your lawn when sprayed on the grass blades.
Remedy: Pour chemicals, fuels, and sprays on your driveway, not on your lawn, and follow application directions.
Animal Urine: Dogs are the most common culprit, but large birds and other animals can cause urine spots, too. Urine usually causes your lawn to turn yellow in spots, sometimes with a bright green ring around the edges where the diluted nitrogen in the urine acts as a fertilizer.
Remedy: Check out our article on How to Keep Dogs From Damaging Your Lawn for tips.
S To Fix Fertilizer Burn
While fertilizer burn is frustrating, its not always a death sentence for your once-vibrant lawn. If you catch the burning early enough, you may be able to save the grass with these steps.
Step 1: Assess the Roots
Even if the grass is brittle and brown, it may still be salvageable. Determine its health by digging up a few small patches of your turf and inspecting the root system. If the roots appear moist, flexible, and in overall good health, theres a chance you can save the grass.
If the roots are shriveled, brittle, and discolored, skip to the Replacing Grass With Fertilizer Burn section.
Step 2: Water, Water, and More Water
The key to riding your soil of that life-sucking mineral salt causing the fertilizer burn is to flush it out with water. Apply about an inch of water to the affected area daily for at least a week.
Remember, to only water the impacted area daily. If you water your entire lawn daily, you could end up with fungus and a whole new set of problems.
Step 3: Check the Roots Again
Skip to Step 4 if your grass has responded to the watering and is nearly back to its normal green color.
If the grass hasnt responded to the watering after a week, dig up turf sections again and reinspect the roots.
Skip ahead to the Replacing Grass With Fertilizer Burn section if the roots have gotten worse or died.
Step 3: Let It Grow
Read Also: How To Kill Spiders In Lawn
What Is Brown Patch
Brown patch can invade rapidly, Patton says. You can come home at 5 in the afternoon, walk through a perfectly green front lawn and wake up to brown patch taking hold.;
Thats because while you were sleeping, a foliar disease started coloring your grass blades with brown leaf spots.;
Its a summer disease, according to the Purdue University Extension. It survives the winter, dormant, in your lawns thatch. Then it turns active when dew periods exceed 10 hours and nighttime temperatures climb above 65.
Nighttime temperatures in the 70s mean perfect brown patch weather, Patton said. In the Kansas City area that usually translates to around mid to late June.;
Those temperatures are the perfect habitat for fungi like the one that causes brown patch.;
The big brown circle in your lawn is the disease spreading from grass blade to grass blade. They turn brown and brittle and create the spots that give brown patch its name.
Often, the perimeter of those spots is a gray-white band called a smoke ring. And sometimes the center of the circle will recover and start turning back to green.;
The effect will also depend on the type of grass you have.;
Cool-season grasses like tall fescue, perennial ryegrass, Kentucky bluegrass and bentgrass usually start showing symptoms in late spring.;
Warm-season species like St. Augustinegrass, Zoysiagrass, Bermudagrass and centipedegrass show symptoms twice during the year: early spring and late fall.
Brown Patch Lawn Disease
Brown patch lawn disease is one of the most destructive of all turf lawn;diseases. It sneaks up on you and destroys large areas of turf virtually overnight when the weather conditions are just right.
Brown patch lawn disease isnt picky; it attacks a wide variety of grass types, and really likes the lawns receiving large amounts of fast release nitrogen fertilizer.
Read Also: What Is The Best Lawn Sweeper
Prevention & Maintenance Tips
Applying a preventative grub control product in the spring or early summer will provide much better grub control than waiting until after the damage has occurred. Use a spreader to apply Scotts® GrubEx®1. Be sure to follow application directions. To activate the product, water immediately after applying. A drought-stressed, underfed lawn will show grub damage faster, and with fewer grubs per square foot, than a properly-fed, well-maintained lawn. A properly maintained lawn can tolerate more grubs per square foot than a stressed lawn. Repair dead patches caused by grubs with Scotts® EZ Seed®.