Go big or go home. That’s how we do things in Texas. Even our landscapes are larger than life and beautifully manicured with golf course style quality. So are the diseases that wreak havoc on our lawns. Our long, hot summers are perfect for entertaining, long hours on the deck, and enjoying life. But with warmer temperatures, also comes the chance for fungi to grow and lawn disease to develop. Here are the three most common lawn diseases that affect your larger than life, Texas lawn.
Brown patch is a common lawn disease in Texas. It is a quick-spreading disease that affects all grass types and severely weakens your turf. Brown patch is easily identified by its patches of brown, dried-up grass. If it isn’t addressed quickly, it can thin out your yard and leave your lawn open to more diseases, pests, and invasive weeds.
Brown patch haunts Texas lawns throughout the year but can be especially bad in late spring/early summer. One of the biggest problems you will face with brown patch, is that it spreads very rapidly. As soon as you notice those irregular patches on your lawn, you will want to act immediately.
How to Prevent Brown Patch
The key to brown patch prevention is good lawn care practices, especially when it comes to watering. Never over-water your lawn, as sitting moisture can spark the brown patch fungus. Here in the Lubbock, Texas area, overwatering shouldn’t be a problem since we have water restrictions limiting the days of the week and time of the day we can water. When it’s time to water, make sure your lawn is draining water properly. If it’s not, it may be the result of thatch buildup, which can be fixed by dethatching and core aeration.
Dollar spot affects cool-season grasses like bermudagrass and fescue and appears as small patches of white, tan, or straw-colored patches of dead grass on your lawn (about the size of a dollar coin). Over time, these spots can merge and create large patches of infected turf. It starts out and becomes active in the spring when the temperatures at night reach at least 50 degrees. It takes advantage of drought-weakened grass or grass that has been oversaturated with water for too long. Heavy dew and consistent wet weather help fuel the growth of dollar spot.
Dollar Spot Prevention
When it comes to preventing dollar spot, the most important factor is irrigation. Dollar spot wreaks havoc on improperly watered lawns. Whether it be too much water or too little water, getting it right can mean the difference between healthy grass and diseased grass. Make sure you only water in the early morning. This gives the grass enough time to dry out during the day, reducing the amount of excess water sitting on the grass. Keeping your lawn healthy with a lawn care program that includes consistent fertilization and a proper maintenance schedule is also essential. Invest in aeration services once per year to improve your lawn’s drainage and reduce the excess thatch in your lawn.
Large patch is very similar to brown patch, except it only affects warm-season grasses. If your lawn isn’t made up of centipede grass, zoysia grass, or St. Augustine grass, you don’t have to worry. For everyone else, this is one of the Texas lawn diseases you don’t want. Like the name suggests, large patch shows up as large patches of brown and thinning grass. Large patch can be anywhere between three to 25 feet in diameter.
Large patch is most common in the spring when temperatures are over 55 degrees throughout the night. Combine those temperatures with heavy dew and consistent moisture, and you’ve got the perfect environment for large patch.
Ways to Prevent Large Patch
In the early spring, when the weather is cool and damp, monitor your lawn for the common symptoms of large patch. You can prevent this disease with proper lawn care throughout the year and a smart lawn maintenance plan. Again, limit the amount of times you are watering your lawn and reduce water pooling.
Prevent Lawn Disease
Help prevent and eliminate all three of the above lawn diseases. Ashton Walden Turf Services specializes in innovative lawn care solutions in Texas.
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