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Summer Care Tips for Your Bluegrass or Fescue Lawn

Summer is here and it’s time to get outside and enjoy the outdoors! When it comes to inviting guests over, lawn care nuts like us enjoy having the best-looking yard on the block. Sod University combines a few lawn care tips for your bluegrass and fescue this summer including proper mowing, irrigation, weed control and more. Be sure to also check out our series of Homeowner Maintenance Guides for generic bluegrassBella® Bluegrass and generic fescue.

Want us to do some of the summer lawn care for you?

Explore the Lawnifi Complete Program, a year-round lawn care subscription designed for seasonal needs, curated by turfgrass experts. Receive boxes containing all necessary lawn care products in spring, summer, and fall, delivered directly to your door.

1. Keep Up with Summer Mowing (and Reduce the Time Spent on This Chore)

Summer mowing, often a challenging chore due to heat and increased grass growth, typically involves keeping bluegrass and fescue between 2.5–3.5 inches, slightly higher in partial shade. Avoid cutting more than a third of the leaf blade to prevent stress and browning. After extended absences, like a vacation, multiple mowings may be needed, with 3–5 days between each session.

Get ahead of summer mowing and check out our tips on reducing time spent mowing your lawn as it gets hotter outside: How to Mow Your Lawn Less During the Summer.
Mowing Fescue Grass

2. Make Sure Your Lawn is Hydrated…But Not Too Hydrated

Despite the temptation to water more in summer, zoysia grasses typically need only 1 inch of water weekly, including rainfall, to avoid disease-promoting waterlogged conditions. Aim for one or two deep waterings early in the morning each week to minimize dew duration and reduce disease risk and take rainfall into consideration.

Watering in the early morning decreases the amount of time dew is present, which is helpful for managing any potential disease outbreaks. Unsure of measuring water? Try an irrigation audit. If heat stress appears, top dressing may help cool and protect your lawn.

watering lawn with hose sprayer

3. Be Cautious with Weed Control

Summer is a poor time for weed control use due to potential damage at temperatures above 85°F. It’s better to apply post-emergents when cooler and use pre-emergents in spring and fall to manage seasonal weeds. If temperatures stay below 85°F, applying post-emergent herbicides is safer, but caution is advised due to possible temperature fluctuations.

For more on weed control, see How to Control Weeds During the Summer. Common weeds include white clover, knotweed, spurge, lespedeza, crabgrass, goosegrass, nutsedge and sandspur. Always read the labels carefully before application.

Spectracide Triazicide

Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer For Lawns & Landscapes Concentrate offers control of a large variety of pests and kills over 260 insects upon contact. Available in a single quart bottle.

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how to get rid of crabgrass

4. Watch Out for Insect Infestations or Damage

Insect Control In Your Zoysia Lawn Grub Worm

Summer brings numerous lawn-damaging insects, including grub worms, which are particularly prevalent. To prevent grubs, apply a systemic insecticide like Acelepryn around June, coinciding with adult beetle activity. Ensure to read product labels carefully before use. For more information on various lawn insects, refer to resources on insect identification.

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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5. Lookout for Bluegrass and Fescue Disease Outbreaks

Monitor your lawn for disease signs like brown patch or powdery mildew and apply fungicides preventatively to maintain health. For lawns with a history of disease, multiple treatments might be necessary, especially in known problem areas. Remember to water immediately after applying granular fungicides to enhance soil absorption.

While chemical treatments are effective, adopting cultural maintenance practices can preemptively deter diseases. These include mowing at the correct height, fertilizing regularly, ensuring the lawn gets one inch of water weekly, applying preventive treatments for weeds insects, and diseases, and maintaining adequate sunlight exposure.

For disease control, we recommend certain products; always read their labels carefully before use.

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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Summer lawn care tips for your bluegrass or fescue grass lawn are mostly about keeping it healthy and stress-free during the hot summer temperatures. This will help it continue to thrive when temperatures eventually cool down and we enter into the fall season. We will see you back here in the fall for our updated fall maintenance tips.

And remember…if you want lawn care made simple, the Lawnifi Complete Subscription provides your lawn with what it needs during the current season and for years to come. 

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