Can I Save my Dying Lawn???

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by mss222, Jan 14, 2013.

  1. turfmd101

    turfmd101 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,289

    This is alone because its important. The reason for applying irrigation water is zone specific. Do not water all zones when needing only to water specific zones. Not only will the turfgrass start giving you its best ability to perform you will start growing turfgrass instead of weeds. Eventually the zones will become more synchronized in there watering needs making it easier on you, easier on the environment and ever important putting $ back in your pocket in which you so seem to need. Who doesn't want $...take advantage. Its there
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  2. Valk

    Valk LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,711

    Turf needs stress WAY more than it needs babying...especially in the cooler/Spring months. You'll get stronger/hardier turf with deeper roots = being more heat/drought resistant.

    Customers who turn on their irrigation systems for 10min here and there are the one's who seem to have the most issues in my neck of the woods. I think that 'they think' their fulfilling some kind of perceived need that their lawn has...when in actuality they are creating a poor environment for their lawn to thrive when Summer conditions arrive.
     
  3. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 10,080

    I can't speak much to Southern grasses, but I find it hard to believe that 12 minutes twice a week is too much water... We do that much every day just to wash dog urine...
    If one is adept in noticing what water-stressed grass looks like before irrigation, that is good, but my idea is to look at the soil in the root zone first hand... if there is enough moisture or not can more easily be determined that way, IMO...
    But either way you do it, you'll want to do it as noted on turfmd101's listed #5... allowing the roots to dry a bit at the surface enhances aeration and microbial activity of greater variety, each of which enhances soil structure and soil health...

    A question about applying K, this time of year and even in the Spring for Northern areas,,, What's up with that??? We sometimes do K apps in the Fall for winter protection, but it is generally not that needed of a nutrient... Has this notion changed??? and should I be thinking about more potassium on a regular basis???
     
  4. turfmd101

    turfmd101 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,289

    K is only for when soil temps are suitable for active growth. The irrigation side is a seasonal, blanket rule I follow. I don't change that ever. I feel it would work in most all soil types. Dry is Dry, Wet is Wet know mater how deep you dig.

    I asked for a root system picture. But have yet to see. In my area nematodes are always actively disabling root activity as well as disallowing the proper development of healthy root tissue. Especially when the tissue is so damaged from poor soil attention. Any time we have strong stress in St. Aug nematodes are present. The root structure will surly dictate recovery ability and time.

    The actual amount of time to irrigate would be dictated by the amount of water any given system outputs vs the soils rate of absorption. All else apply blanket. IMHO.
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  5. turfmd101

    turfmd101 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,289

    My feelings about K needs are as follows. Turfgrass lives in a world of continual battles. Mowing, improper irrigation, drought, record rains, etc...no, these problems do not always exist but definitely will at some point. Applying K frequently will enable turfgrass to build on vigor and strength. IMHO I feel N will mostly provide growth and turfgrass grows fert or not. That's why lawn maintenance company's don't require fertilization to keep the mowers running. K frequency should be based on CEC and environmental stress factors. I also believe P & K shared together is more beneficial for overall vigor but in Florida P is phasing out. Frequent K applications will provide your turfgrass with the tools it requires to minimize and relieve stress. Which will allow optimum performance even under adverse conditions.
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  6. Biogreen

    Biogreen LawnSite Member
    Posts: 17

    There are some nice circles, thats what the brown patch looks like up here in NC
     
  7. turfmd101

    turfmd101 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,289

    Looking at the pictures on my laptop. I do notice that golden glow and twist that BP has when activley growing. Starving it for water should knock it down.
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  8. Patriot Services

    Patriot Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 12,675

    Your going to end up sod patching the brown areas. After it takes good hold you can deal with the dollarweed. Patience is key here. You can get rid of most with big box supplies. Stick with granular and apply as directed. Let it grow to at least 4.5". This alone fixes most weed problems in SA. Apply a fungicide since we still have heavy dew and rain. Call a good independant CPO and get an estimate for a program. Do not call Trugreen.
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  9. That is def brown patch. IMO, get a CPO out ASAP to treat the BP. You may be surprised how much you can salvage. Once the BP is not spreading, I would put down a K heavy with slow release N to get lateral growth going. You want fill in. Quick release N will only exacerbate the BP problem. I would also have the dollar weed sprayed at the same time. Whatever areas are to big for fill in, resod. IMO, dollar weed isn't always from overwatering. It will also pop up from standing water meaning those areas might be compacted and not draining well.
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  10. Landscape Poet

    Landscape Poet LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,638

    I respect your opinion turf as you are the licensed applicator however the reason I would say Brown Patch is the appearance leads me to say that with the large circles and yellowing leaf and the current soil temps have been perfect for this disease to show its side effects especially because of the cooler evening hours. The environment being dry would be accurate except in the OP's statement he noted that he is running the irrigation twice a week AND 12 minutes in the morning as well. I can not be positive as I do not know the amount of water he is applying in those two applications a week but I can almost assure you with the aid of the additional 12 minutes EVERY morning the root system is next to nothing in this lawn as the lawn never has to look for water and therefore it has not roots established to fight off stresses . It would be my guess the BP spores are present and he is promoting it with over watering ..also evident by the dollar weed. Also remember he installed this lawn this winter, and stated he watered 4 to 5 times a week for the first 90 days.
    This turfgrass has never established any root system
    On the watering I agree with your advice except most home owners are not willing to put that much time into their lawn so it has been my experience although you can tell them this, they will simply not do it and take advice from someone else on how long to water their lawn.

    One thing the OP will have to be advised of , it the lawn has been that heavily watered since install.....I would bet it would show signs of stress daily for awhile as again the roots have been made to look for water. If allowed to go without monitoring daily....he will lose more turfgrass to stress. I have a feeling it will take awhile for the turf to get to off its immediate need for water. Especially if he is applying 0-0-62 as you suggested because would the chlorine in that product just put it under more stress? With respect to your turf as you are the applicator and I am simply a lawn guy...would he be best advised to NOT apply any fertilizer until the BP is under control and the lawn irrigation practices are better as the lawn does not need any other stresses.

    Also OP if I am correct and that is Brown Patch. If you mow your own lawn or if you have someone do it....you need to stop IMHO 1. until the turf is taller as Patriot stated in the 4.5 to 5 inch range and then only if 2. there is signs of the BP not being active anymore IE the blades do not pull out with ease, they do not smell , and the yellowing is gone as you are most likely helping spread it throughout the lawn.

    As I stated in my first opinion....I think you need to hire a small well respected fert and squirt company to get this under control. IT WILL BE CHEAPER THAN REPLACING THE LAWN

    I agree with Florida too...you will be surprised how much of that will come back under proper mgmt and care with proper irrigation and mechanical procedures.

    Not trying to be rude to anyone on here but rather just trying to help the OP out with my opinions and I do not claim to be the best at turf disease mgmt so many of my statements are just guesses.
     

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