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d16daily
09-21-2008, 05:27 PM
hello, just wondering if any of you specialists could give me some advice :waving:

I'm a college kid, but I still enjoy taking care of the 'rents lawn. :weightlifter:
Dad has been with ChemLawn for a while now, but he just pays the bill. So we have their services available if you recommend I take advantage of that. (I've read about something called core aeration??)


anyways, this is what the lawn looks like up close. I see a kind of buildup of brown material
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v519/jakescakes/DSC01958.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v519/jakescakes/DSC01960.jpg


I was using this
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v519/jakescakes/DSC01956.jpg

and this is what I pulled out after 15 minutes

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v519/jakescakes/DSC01961.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v519/jakescakes/DSC01953.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v519/jakescakes/DSC01955.jpg





also, for added kicks, here's a video of what I was doing for 15 minutes. I was gently raking, then kind of digging the rake in the grass and pulling straight up to exhume the brown material, then gently rake away again. let me know if I just ruined the lawn, or whatever advice the gurus of grass can throw my way. :cool2:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v519/jakescakes/th_MOV01964.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v519/jakescakes/?action=view&current=MOV01964.flv)



thanks for any help!

DJ Contracting
09-21-2008, 05:59 PM
Looks like you have some fungus starting by looking at the blades of grass there is a yellow tint at the top and bottom of some of the blades.

1. What height are you cutting the grass at ?
2. Do you aerate & how many times?
3. Pull a core and see how deep the roots go
4. I would cut the grass at 2" and aerate

As far as thatch you pulled up a lot of dead grass but your best bet is to aerate so that your turf gets more oxygen and reaps the benefits of the weeds and feed applications that's just my 2cents.

EVM
09-21-2008, 06:04 PM
Yeah that is thatch but that lawn does not need thatching.

JDUtah
09-21-2008, 06:53 PM
Looks like you have some fungus starting by looking at the blades of grass there is a yellow tint at the top and bottom of some of the blades.

1. What height are you cutting the grass at ?
2. Do you aerate & how many times?
3. Pull a core and see how deep the roots go
4. I would cut the grass at 2" and aerate

As far as thatch you pulled up a lot of dead grass but your best bet is to aerate so that your turf gets more oxygen and reaps the benefits of the weeds and feed applications that's just my 2cents.

:clapping::clapping::clapping::clapping:

Yep, I agree with DJ.

I would just have it core aerated, a double pass. No need to de-thatch. And if it has been showing more brown than usual I agree, looks like a little fungal fight going on.

What are your cutting and watering practices?

Aeration should help resolve the thatch and fungus stuff.

d16daily
09-21-2008, 07:08 PM
Looks like you have some fungus starting by looking at the blades of grass there is a yellow tint at the top and bottom of some of the blades.

1. What height are you cutting the grass at ?
2. Do you aerate & how many times?a
3. Pull a core and see how deep the roots go
4. I would cut the grass at 2" and aerate

As far as thatch you pulled up a lot of dead grass but your best bet is to aerate so that your turf gets more oxygen and reaps the benefits of the weeds and feed applications that's just my 2cents.

Thank you for the quick replies! The fungus thing sounds unusual, should I bring this up to ChemLawn?

1. usually cut around 3 inches. 2nd highest setting on a 21" craftsman push
2. don't believe we ever aerated to be honest :nono:
3. what kinda tool would I use?

I will contact ChemLawn and take your advice and try to schedule a core aeration, I believe they offer it.

:clapping::clapping::clapping::clapping:

Yep, I agree with DJ.

I would just have it core aerated, a double pass. No need to de-thatch. And if it has been showing more brown than usual I agree, looks like a little fungal fight going on.

What are your cutting and watering practices?

Aeration should help resolve the thatch and fungus stuff.

thanks your your help as well. hopefully I can get the yard core aerated by chemlawn

I cut at least once a week on the second highest setting of a 21" crafsman, about 3in I would guess.

I water pretty often with a sprinkler in the summer, about every other day I get it soaked for about 1 hour.

how much water do you guys recommend?? and for each seasons

EVM
09-21-2008, 07:33 PM
Thank you for the quick replies! The fungus thing sounds unusual, should I bring this up to ChemLawn?

1. usually cut around 3 inches. 2nd highest setting on a 21" craftsman push
2. don't believe we ever aerated to be honest :nono:
3. what kinda tool would I use?

I will contact ChemLawn and take your advice and try to schedule a core aeration, I believe they offer it.



thanks your your help as well. hopefully I can get the yard core aerated by chemlawn

I cut at least once a week on the second highest setting of a 21" crafsman, about 3in I would guess.

I water pretty often with a sprinkler in the summer, about every other day I get it soaked for about 1 hour.

how much water do you guys recommend?? and for each seasons

There is nothing wrong with that lawn from the pictures I see. I live in Jersey so the temps have been cool, no brown patch. you are always going to have some brown sub surface material especially coming out of the hot summer seaso. I see no melting in those pics.

d16daily
09-21-2008, 07:55 PM
yeah, its actually worse than the pix look, maybe I can get clearer pix for you guys to decipher.

but i pulled a huge trash bag of dead grass or whatever with the metal rake in not much time on a fraction of the yard

Smallaxe
09-22-2008, 10:54 AM
Core aerate for what????????????
No thatch problem , no noticable compaction problem. Wasting money problem is what I see.

As winter approaches you will want to shorten those grass blades closer to 2.5" or so. That alone will do more to help your possible fungus problem than anything. You do water only early in the day - Correct?

turfcobob
09-22-2008, 11:54 AM
D16, quick lesson on thatch. Thatch is that organic layer between the growing grass and the mineral soil (dirt). It is usually composed of the runners, roots, rizomes and some top growth (leaves) Usually leaves will break up before they intergrate into the thatch layer. Roots, stems, and other growing parts are another deal. They are heavy in the product that is like hemp rope and do not break down easily. Over feeding and watering are the usual culprits to thatch growth.
The best way to check for that is with a core sampler. If you do not have one take a big knife with you onto the lawn. You will be able to plug the lawn like a water melon. If you have hard soled boots like cowboy or work boots with a solid sole wear them. Walk in a heel first motion. That is having your heel hit the lawn first. If the lawn starts feeling soft like very good carpet stop and take a sample. A thickness of over .50 inch is trouble over 1 inch is serious problem. It will have to be removed if it measures more than .75 inch. Less like .50 inch you may be able to recover from by intense aeration. More than 12 holes per sq ft. the more the better. .75 and more is just too much and should be removed.

jeffinsgf
09-22-2008, 12:22 PM
Just to add to Bob's comment, the "carpet feel" test is appropriate for most grasses, and what he is suggesting is to use the test to decide where to take a sample to see if you have thatch. What I wanted to add is that in zoysia, the carpet feel is somewhat normal and may or may not indicate thatch. That said, warm season grasses can be very vulnerable to thatch, so careful monitoring is important.

cudaclan
09-22-2008, 05:39 PM
Less N will limit thatch accumulation/production. The video says it all. That small segment (dethatched) produced excessive thatch that will not decompose relatively easy. If the lawn is small, use a dethatching rake. Or, rent a dethacher and add the contents to the compost pile. As Small said, core if compacted.

EVM
09-22-2008, 09:36 PM
For watering I recommend you visual inspect your lawn for drought stress and Gage the amount of water you need to put down from that. If the lawn is stressed at 45 min a zone bump it to 1 hour. I like the theory of watering at 3 AM in the morning 2-3 times a week. Water when the grass is at its shortest hight. What for long periods of time instead of every other day for 1/2 hour a zone.

Managing a living organism is not a simple thing, especially when you have uncontrollable climates

joshua
09-24-2008, 12:06 AM
looks like dollar spot, most fert. companies will just hit it with nitrogen and grow it out. when you cut bag the grass and raise your mower height. i also wouldn't water at night, the evening. if you were to water and it doesn't look stressed i would water about 8-10 am.

turfcobob is smart.

d16daily
09-24-2008, 02:50 AM
alright well there is so much knowledge here for sure. definitely gonna do the watering a bit earlier from now on.

so what exactly would you guys recommend I tell Chemlawn to do?? I know their not liked, but I dont pay the bills as of now. Seems the only way to get them to do **** is to bug them.
Should I schedule an aeration and bring up the fungus??

Smallaxe
09-24-2008, 10:01 AM
alright well there is so much knowledge here for sure. definitely gonna do the watering a bit earlier from now on.

so what exactly would you guys recommend I tell Chemlawn to do?? I know their not liked, but I dont pay the bills as of now. Seems the only way to get them to do **** is to bug them.
Should I schedule an aeration and bring up the fungus??

I don't see that anything needs to be done. You have not shown to have 'thatch', maybe some buildup in the grass. Check this out to see what thatch really is:

http://www.urbanext.uiuc.edu/lawnchallenge/lesson5.html

Could be the onset of some kind of fungi problem, but a change in cultural practices should prevent it from becoming a big deal. The chances of a 'fungicide treatment' actually working, is highly unlikely.
I have posed the question b4 - Has anyone actually seen a fungal disease cured with a treatment?

EVM
09-24-2008, 08:42 PM
I don't see that anything needs to be done. You have not shown to have 'thatch', maybe some buildup in the grass. Check this out to see what thatch really is:

http://www.urbanext.uiuc.edu/lawnchallenge/lesson5.html

The chances of a 'fungicide treatment' actually working, is highly unlikely.
I have posed the question b4 - Has anyone actually seen a fungal disease cured with a treatment?

I do it all the time, you can't use a granule, it must be sprayed with a contact and systemic fungicide.

Smallaxe
09-25-2008, 05:14 AM
I do it all the time, you can't use a granule, it must be sprayed with a contact and systemic fungicide.

How often do you have to "cure" a lawn? Annually?

I either get the client to change the cultural practice or the fungi continues to take out more and more lawn that in turn gets replanted. Stupid I know , but if they believe that much in their over fertilization and over irrigation then I don't have any more to say.

If this yellowing in the pix, is a diagnosis for a high priced fungal regime, then I go for the great byline:
"Never give a sucker an even break."

EVM
09-25-2008, 08:28 PM
How often do you have to "cure" a lawn? Annually?

I either get the client to change the cultural practice or the fungi continues to take out more and more lawn that in turn gets replanted. Stupid I know , but if they believe that much in their over fertilization and over irrigation then I don't have any more to say.

If this yellowing in the pix, is a diagnosis for a high priced fungal regime, then I go for the great byline:
"Never give a sucker an even break."

Some of these people get brown patch on an annual basis. What is the cause of it? Probably bad watering habits and bad grass types. I never see fungus in a sodded lawn. I see fungus in lawns that have been over seeded with garbage seed. More than likely its the garbage seed.....example> "lesco TeamMates". The brown patch always comes around the same time of year, same type of climate... hot & humid. The minute the temps drop and there is no humidity, the fungus is gone.

To most of the people that have this annual fungus problem I recommend re sodding the areas that are affected and changing their watering habits. Some people are deaf so when you talk to them its like talking to a wall. When these people get the tab for the R&R, they usually listen up real fast.

I don't think there is no fungus in those pics, most of the brown material is around the crown. I see nothing on the upper blades......

Smallaxe
09-25-2008, 09:09 PM
http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2007/jul/05/spotty_lawns_should_recover_brown_patch_fungus/
The fungal inoculum will persist indefinitely in the soil, and there is no way to eliminate it from a lawn. It’s not “carried” from one lawn to another or spread by mower tires or foot traffic. The fungus cannot be eliminated, and its appearance is generally weather-related. Outside of the weather, there are some cultural practices that can help control it.

Whitey4
09-25-2008, 10:47 PM
http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2007/jul/05/spotty_lawns_should_recover_brown_patch_fungus/
The fungal inoculum will persist indefinitely in the soil, and there is no way to eliminate it from a lawn. It’s not “carried” from one lawn to another or spread by mower tires or foot traffic. The fungus cannot be eliminated, and its appearance is generally weather-related. Outside of the weather, there are some cultural practices that can help control it.

I was under the impression that pythium blight can be spread by mower tires... in fact, I sprayed my tires with 10% bleach this summer after mowing an infected lawn. I can't say if this customer will have a repeat problem, but Prodigy did indeed cure it for this season. There were about 7 spots of turf that were affected, and it went from one spot to 7 in a week. The surrounding turf (zoysia) eventually migrated back into the diseased areas, and the lawn is about 98% recovered.

Smallaxe
09-25-2008, 11:05 PM
Pythium blight may be different than brown patch.

Looks like we need another research episode.

JDUtah
09-25-2008, 11:13 PM
One example...

I signed one customer on (mowing & one sprinkler zone conversion- spray to drip) this spring that had TGCL treating her property. For their second app TGCL sprayed liquid NPK during a light rain. Pythium blight popped up within a week. Got her to fire TG and hire us for chems as well.. our first job? Skip the next fert app and adjust the lawn sprinkler timer. Bagged grass and only mowed when dry. No fungicide. It was in 100% resession within a couple weeks... gone within a month, no problems since. (I left the company in august and haven't seen the lawn since then)

IMO cultural practices are the most effective form of disease control.

joshua
09-26-2008, 01:52 AM
disease happens when grass blades stick together and there is moisture present.

Smallaxe
09-26-2008, 10:04 AM
Good example JD. That's what I was talking about.

If the oversoaked ground is continued I bet a fungicide would have little or no affect.