As most homeowners know, there is nothing better than having a perfectly lush, vibrantly green lawn throughout the summertime. And just as well as we know what we want in a lawn, we know how to spot something we don't – lawn disease.
If you have ever noticed bare spots in your lawn, yellowing patches, or other defects, then you might have thought some good and old-fashioned water and fertilizer would do the trick, only to find that you were still left with an unsightly lawn. In these cases, its likely your lawn is suffering from some sort of fungal outbreak that requires a different kind of TLC.
One of the most common forms of fungal disease that we're seeing early this summer is dollar spot. Dollar spot can affect a wide range of grass types, but has been prone be present to Bermuda grass lawns and even Zoysia grass. Dollar spot is caused by the fungus Clarireedia homoeocarpa, which targets the grass's leaf tissues, and can even go on to negatively affect the root structure.
You can 'spot' dollar spot yourself in most cases; identifiable by its brownish, tan color, dollar spots are about the size of a silver dollar in early stages, and will grow into blobs of other dollar spots as time goes on. If you keep your lawn is closely mowed, you may notice dollar spot more quickly than if your lawn grows higher.
Another extremely common type of fungal disease is known as brown patch, which can be found commonly in Fescue lawns. Caused by the Rhizoctonia fungi, brown patch will become most effective once nighttime summer temperatures hold around 65⁰F - 70⁰F. The metro Atlanta area is just now beginning to see nighttime lows in the 60s, so be on the lookout for patch formation.
The easiest way to identify brown patch is by looking for an area of your lawn that you might think looks dead or too dry. They can be circular and blob shaped, growing up to 3 feet in diameter sometimes.
When approaching treatment for fungal lawn disease, it's best to act fast. Since your lawn has shown that it's capable of harboring fungal disease, fungicide applications will be necessary in almost all cases. Fungicides work to prevent the growth of existing fungi and their spores; they work their best when applied before the infection, but still can prevent future spores from growing.
At AgroPro, we offer fungicide programs that are specifically tailored to your lawn's disease type, and can perform 3-4 treatments a year depending on grass type. We can also reactively treat your lawn's fungal disease to treat them on the 'spot.' If left untreated, fungal diseases can wreak havoc on your turf for many years.