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Fall Care Tips for Your Bluegrass or Fescue Lawn

The heat of the summer is coming to an end and the first day of fall is approaching! As outdoor temperatures drop, your soil conditions change and as a result, the nutrients your grass requires also alter. It’s important that you also change up your fall maintenance plans for your cool season grasses such as bluegrass and fescue.

Want us to do some fall lawn care for you?

If so, check out the Lawnifi Complete Program! The Lawnifi Complete Program is a year-round subscription for seasonal lawn care delivered to your door. Our boxes include everything your lawn needs in one lawn care subscription. Lawnifi is also introducing the Fall Complete Lawn Bundle to provide all the essentials your lawn needs for the fall season.

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1. Maintain a Consistent Mowing Height

The height you usually mow your bluegrass or fescue year-round should typically fall within the 2.5–3.5 inch range. The mowing height should remain the same during the upcoming cooler months. This mowing height helps prevent snow mold in snow prone regions.

2. Water Less as Temperatures Drop

Water your lawn less as temperatures drop to prevent disease. Changing temperatures and soil conditions invite fungus outbreaks. Fallen leaves creating shady areas can also contribute to turfgrass disease.

Continue watering to prevent drought stress while the grass is growing. Bluegrass and fescue need 1–1.25 inches of water per week, including rainfall, but water slightly less in the fall. Watering in the early morning reduces disease risk.

3. Fertilize Your Lawn with the Right Nutrients

Fertilization differs this time of the year compared to the other active growing seasons (spring and summer). As previously stated, outdoor temperatures are starting to change—so are soil conditions. Your grass is a living thing that needs specific nutrients at this time.

What is the best fertilizer for grass in the fall?

Sod University recommends two different fertilizer options for the fall, however, you will only need to use one of the two options for fall fertilization. 

Option 1: The Fall Fertilizer Box, in particular, has three separate bottles of liquid fertilizer in it that help your lawn recover from the hot summer temperatures it just endured as well as prepare for the colder temperatures ahead.

Option 2: Lawnifi Foundation is a slow-release granular fertilizer option that comes in a 25 pound bag and lasts for three months. With a 29-0-5 NPK formulation, Lawnifi Foundation is the perfect granular fertilizer for lawns and gardens.

The two percent iron included in Lawnifi Foundation’s mixture helps plants carry oxygen throughout the leaves, roots and other parts of the plants to promote a green, healthy lawn.

Fall Fertilizer Box

The Lawnifi Fall Fertilizer Box comes with three different bottles of liquid fertilizer designed to help your lawn recover from the hot summer months and transition into the coldest time of the year.

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4. Control Weeds with Pre- and Post-Emergent Herbicides

As temperatures cool, you can safely apply both post-emergent and pre-emergent herbicides to your bluegrass or fescue lawn. Summer weeds may be dying off, but winter weeds will soon appear. Apply a pre-emergent in the fall to prevent them.

Post-emergent herbicides control existing weeds, while pre-emergents prevent new ones. Fall is the best time for pre-emergent application, especially if winter weeds have been an issue before. You can also apply them in spring around March or April.

Hi-Yield Turf & Ornamental Weed & Grass Stopper

Powered by Dimension, Hi-Yield Turf & Ornamental Weed & Grass Stopper is an excellent pre-emergent herbicide. Available in a 12-pound and 35-pound bag.

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5. Keep an Eye Out for Insect Infestations

Apply a preventative insecticide to avoid costly infestations in your bluegrass or fescue lawn. Use a broad-spectrum insecticide to protect against pests, especially grub worms.

If you notice insect activity, use an appropriate insecticide and read labels thoroughly. For granular varieties, water the lawn immediately after application for better absorption.

Visit our Insect Identification blog for more details.

Acelepryn Insecticide

Acelepryn Insecticide is a product that offers foliar and systemic control of white grubs and pests. Available in a 4 oz. bottle.

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Insect Control In Your Zoysia Lawn Grub Worm

6. Prevent Disease Outbreaks as Temperatures Change

Apply a systemic fungicide at preventative rates in early fall to keep disease outbreaks at bay and help your grass enter colder months healthier. If diseases are common, multiple applications may be needed. Water the lawn immediately after applying a granular fungicide for better absorption. Mapping treated areas can help manage costs. Always read product labels thoroughly before use.

Tip: Remove dead leaves regularly to prevent shaded, moist spots that damage grass. Rake weekly if you have many trees.

Heritage G Granular Fungicide

Heritage G Granular Fungicide is a broad-spectrum systemic fungicide that prevents and cures a variety of turfgrass diseases for up to 28 days. Available in 10 lb. and 30 lb. bags.

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Lastly, lawn patch work and light topdressing with a sand and topsoil mix is a great way to recover any weak areas in your lawn that were caused by the summer heat. If you notice any hot spots, apply a light layer of topdressing to help it recover.

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