Spring: An Open Invitation For Lawn Fungus
Posted on April 1, 2016
Due to rapid temperature changes each spring, St. Augustine lawns are vulnerable to spring lawn fungus. “Brown Patch”, “Take All Root Rot” and “Grey Leaf Spot” are common lawn diseases caused by fungus growth in St. Augustine lawns. Whether you DIY or hire a lawn care specialist, timely fungicide application, and smart water usage can make a big difference in your lawn’s health.
Common spring lawn fungus in St. Augustine:
Brown Patch: Circular or irregularly shaped patches of light brown, thin grass.
Take All Root Rot: Yellowish chlorosis that turns brown to straw colored. It may form in circular patches. The turf becomes thin because the roots, nodes, and stolons become infected and die. Topdressing with peat moss along with fungicide treatment can suppress the disease.
Grey Leaf Spot: Yellowish chlorosis that turns brown. Numerous oblong gray to ash brown lesions appear on the grass blades. Topdressing with peat moss along with fungicide treatment can halt the disease.
What is “chlorosis”? In short, chlorosis is the loss of healthy green color (chlorophyll) in plants. This can be due to damaged roots, lawn disease, poor drainage, nutrient deficiencies and more.
“Smart” Watering Your Lawn
Poor watering can promote fungus growth and run up your water bill. Never run the sprinkler system to the point where water is pooling in the yard. Instead, use multiple start times and short run times (cycle and soak). Avoid late-night watering because it is harder to observe pooled water or poor drainage. Standing water and cooler night time temperatures are fuel for spring lawn fungus.
St. Augustine requires 1 to 1.5 inches of water per week to stay healthy during growing season. If you don’t have a rain gauge, simply measure the amount of water reaching your grass by placing an empty can on the lawn. Turn on the sprinkler and allow the can to collect water while the sprinkler runs. After the sprinkler cycle, use a ruler to measure the amount of water collected in the can. Adjust your sprinklers to run the right amount required for your grass.
Along with good water methods, a professional fungicide program helps control spring lawn fungus and allow for a healthier, greener lawn. We suggest applying fungicide in early spring and fall. Our bi-annual fungicide program takes the guesswork out of buying and applying the right products for your lawn. Call (972) 727-9207 for more information. We offer free estimates and your satisfaction is always guaranteed.