Turf Troubles Solved
Summer brings several stressors to lawn grasses. Heat, drought, and wear and tear can all take their toll, slowing growth and contributing to lawn diseases and weed growth. Here are two common summer lawn issues and advice on how to deal with them.
Summer Patch Turf Fungus
Summer patch, sometimes called “frog’s eye,” causes straw-colored spots of dead turf to develop in the summer months. It’s a soil-borne fungus that’s very difficult to control once symptoms manifest. Preventive applications of granulated fungicides, such as Ferti-lome’s “F stop” or Bayers Advanced Lawn Fungus Control, are quite effective against lawn fungus if used in conjunction with recommended cultural practices. The products are systemic and must be watered in well to the depth of the grass roots. Core aeration may be necessary if thatch or hard clay soils exist. Areas of the lawn that are exposed to the hottest part of the afternoon sun, areas of a fairly steep slope, or any other stressed area are most likely to be affected. It may be necessary to make repeated applications.
Weed Control in Turf
Broadleaf, as well as grassy weeds are common nuisances to beautiful lawns in the Midwest. One of the most frustrating weeds is Yellow Nutsedge. This light green, shiny-bladed perennial weed is often mistaken as a grass when it invades the lawn in June. Its extensive semi-dormant root system makes permanent removal difficult. Halosulfuron-methyl will effectively control nutsedge that has emerged from its bulb-like underground root system. Contrary to popular belief, pulling is very unproductive and may actually stimulate the tubers to multiply. Two or more applications of Halosulfuron-methyl prior to the end of June/early July are needed to effectively control this nuisance. The nutsedge will start to yellow in 4-7 days, and will usually die within 14 days.
For more information on lawn care, visit with a professional at Lanoha Nurseries, 192nd & West Center Road, or visit www.lanohanurseries.com and click on the Resources tab.