02 Mar Treat your Lawn so you can Treat Yourself to a Fungus Free Lawn
Treat your Lawn so you can Treat Yourself to a Fungus Free Lawn
Learn the Secrets to a Healthier Lawn
Spring is in the air, the birds are chirping, the days are getting longer, and daydreams about BBQs on lush green yards consume our every thought. What’s not on your mind is the fact that fungus or disease could be taking over your lawn in ugly brown circles. Fungus can establish and persist in dormant, warm-season lawns and go largely unnoticed in dormancy, that is until the “spring green up” hits. Before you know it, you are waging war with an outbreak instead of enjoying your lawn and the great weather. This article will help you identify and treat potential fungi hotspots so that you can spend more time enjoying your lawn instead of working on it.
What is lawn fungus…
Fungi are plants that lack chlorophyll and therefore are unable to produce their own food. To feed and survive, the fungi needs to obtain food from either dead organic matter (dead leaves and excessive thatch) or find and take over a host plant. Fungi spread through spores, which are easily transferred through wind, rain, mowing and simply walking through a fungi outbreak. Once transferred, the spore penetrates into the host plant, feeding and growing until it has taken over the host. During peak fungus season a fungus can produce and discharge up to 100,000 spores an hour.
What to look for in your lawn…
For Fungus to spread and be present there needs to be three main factors,
a) Host, living or dead organic matter (thatch and leaves) b) the Right Environment, such as a shaded, moist environment and c) the Pathogen. These three factors are also known as the disease triangle. All three must be present for the fungus to grow and spread.
If fungus is present in your lawn, it will present itself in circular, irregular patterns of damage. It will have a clear dead zone where the fungus has fed and a lighter yellow/brown ring around the outskirts where the fungus is spreading.
Be proactive; be on the lookout for damp shaded areas that hold more moisture than other parts of your lawn. These areas may or may not have excessive thatch or other dead organic material. If you have areas that match this description, it is time to treat your lawn. As these pose the greatest threat of an outbreak.
A good rule of thumb is that by the time your azaleas are showing color, you should be able to see very clearly if your lawn has a fungus.
How to treat and prevent fungus outbreaks…
The best way to treat Fungus is to be proactive and treat at the first sign of damp lawn areas and not after the fungus has taken hold. This can be done with a simple application of a systemic fungicide. A few recommended options are listed below, one liquid hose end, one granular, and one tank mix. With fungicide, you get what you pay for, but some action is always better than none!
Suggested Fungicide Products:
If you already have fungus, stop what you are doing and purchase one of our recommended topical fungicides to treat the area immediately; be sure not to mow over that area or walk on it. Each area may take several treatments. Some fungicides function as both preventative and curative, with large application rates for curative treatments. Once the outbreak is controlled, place a fungicide that attacks the roots (systemic) on a schedule to help further outbreaks.
Be sure to check your lawn and treat for fungus prior to any fertilizing/feeding this spring. Most fertilizers contain Nitrogen, which fungus love. If you feed your lawn prior to putting a fungicide down and you have a fungus, that fungus will expand exponentially, which will be disastrous for your lawn.
Armed with this new knowledge, go check your lawn, treat the problem areas or potential at-risk areas, and get to spending more time enjoying your lawn instead of working on it.
To ensure you continue to have a great looking lawn, be sure to check out Lawnifi’s Spring Box with everything you need to feed your lawn this spring. Lawnifi is lawncare with less work, less product, and better results.
Here’s to a happy spring!
Lawnifi’s Recover is necessary to fill in the damaged grass once the fungus has been killed.