Ask a Question
Notify Me On Question Update
Email this Question
What are the best cures for fungus type lawn diseases. We've tried infrequent deeper watering, which makes it worse, higher mowing in the hotter months, airation shoes, and everthing else suggested. We know we have clay under the topsoil.
Rate This FAQ
The best "cure" for fungus in turfgrass is prevention. By eliminating fungus's preferred habitat, you will eliminate the disease. All of the suggested cultural practices you mention (infrequent and deeper watering, aeration, and raising the mower deck in summer) are good practices. But there is one critical element you did not mention - thatch.
Thatch is the spongy layer of dead and dying leaf and root tissue layered on top of the soil but beneath the grass blades. If this layer is thicker than one-half inch, it may be allowing fungus to stay protected.
Diagnose your thatch problem by digging out a cross-section slice of lawn. Measure the distance between true soil and growing grass blades. If it is as thick as three-quarter inch, you have a problem.
To decrease thatch, core aerate twice annually. Be sure that the lawn is aerated very well - run the aerator over the same area twice (in two different directions, just as you would fertilize with a drop-spreader). You needn't remove the cores. Aerate in spring and again in late summer or fall.
Are you cycling your irrigation? If you have clay soil under topsoil, irrigate as if the entire soil profile was clay. This assures good water percolation through the root zone.
For more information about Basic Turfgrass Care, see the USU Extension publication with that title at http://extension.usu.edu/files/publications/publication/HG_517.pdf
Submit Your Suggestion
Other Questions In This Topic
- I sodded my back yard 3 years ago with RTF. It has not held up well, especially in the higher traffic areas where it is completely dead. Any suggestions?
- I live on 25 acres on the border of Summit and Wasatch Counties at an elevation of 7,000 ft. I need to add some trees to the landscape both evergreen and shade? What are good choices for my high and cold location?
- When will my flowering shrubs bloom, and when should I prune them and my evergreens?
- Spotted spurge is taking over my lawn. What can I do now, in these hot August temperatures, to knock back this weed problem?
- Why do lilacs do so well?
- When is the best time time to water my lawn? I've heard it's better in the evening because it gives time to soak in and I've heard morning because if you do it at night the lawn will get moldy. Thanks.
- When is the best time to seed native grasses such as streambank and western wheatgrass into an existing Kentucky Bluegrass lawn? Some of what I've read leads me to believe that it would be best to seed in late fall so the seed will germinate in the spring. But I wonder if it would be better to seed in early fall after stressing the KBG. I will also be seeding sheep fescue, but I've seen conflicting information on whether that is native or introduced. My goal is to have a lawn that can survive with no water, and stay green with very little water.
- I have read that one should water infrequently and then water to penetrate 6 to 10 inches especially if one has necrotic ring spot. I live in Sandy where the top soil is only four inches and then sand and rock. Does it make sense to water 6 to 8 inches? Also does necrotic ring spot live in sandy rocky soil? Is it possible to control or eliminate the necrotic ring spot by using a service or must I excavate and if so to what extent?