Lawn Disease Identification and Control in Livonia
Turf infested with leaf spot or crown rot is thinned and oﬂen looks as though it is suffering from drought or is mistaken for insect damage. Many people water their lawns, thinking they are drying out. Actually, excessive moisture will accelerate the spread of the disease. In addition to too much moisture, close mowing and infrequent mowing also aggravate the disease. Letting the grass get very tall and then cutting it back, or mowing with a dull blade, weakens the plants and allows the leaf spot disease to enter the plant system. This is probably the most common homeowner mistake that leads to leaf spot activity.
Dollar Spot Disease
Necrotic Ring Spot
- Use only slow release, dry granular fertilizers (Warner Landscape uses only this material). Never apply any liquid fertilizers, as they are hotter and heat up soil temperatures!
- Mow as tall as possible! This helps shade the soil, reducing heat stress and allows for more water retention. Also, keep the mower blade sharp and mow regularly (every 5 to 7 days)
- Watering — this is the most important thing to do for prevention and recovery for this disease. Short daily waterings when temperatures are near 80 degrees or above during the honest part of the day is a MUST! Try to water between noon and 4:00pm. This will reduce soil temperatures and allow for continued root growth.
- Turf aeration — annual turf aerating will help stimulate root growth, allow deeper root penetration and let more air, water and nutrients reach the root zone.
- Fungicide treatment (yes or no)? Many times, by simply changing your cultural practices, such as mowing, watering, etc. may help to control NRS disease activity. The only thing left to try is a special fungicide treatment. Fungicides are quite expensive, but if they work, it is well worth the cost of this treatment.
Gray snow mold is more common on home lawns. Pink snow mold is usually conﬁned to golf course putting greens. Gray snow mold can spread to form large diseased areas. Grass within these areas become matted. closely pressed to the ground and often is completely destroyed
PREVENTION NEXT YEAR
Mow your lawn short in the fall and keep mowing it as long as it needs it. (This may be until almost Thanksgiving.)
Mushrooms appearing for no reason
Aﬁer periods of high humidity and heavy rainfall organic material deep in the soil starts to decompose, i.e. Tree roots, stumps, building material, usually wood. As this material decomposes it releases nitrogen gases up through the soil and the fruiting bodies
(mushrooms) start to form.