Mower tires and burn streaks

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by Scott's Lawn Maintenance, Jun 2, 2007.

  1. Scott's Lawn Maintenance

    Scott's Lawn Maintenance LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 309

    What is causing mower tires to cause burn streaks in the lawn.
    I noticed this a week after on returning to property, it seems
    to happen more often when conditions are dry.
  2. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    Stress....namely drought stress by the sounds of it. A high nitrogen program without enough potassium will certainly contribute to this, as well. A broadleaf weed killer stresses the turf as well, and is a common potential cause, as well. Either way, the idea is water, and plenty of it (in the proper increments).
  3. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 12,226

    No one knows the exact reasons "heat tracks" occur. Unpredictable. Rare occurrence. It happens when grass is just starting to wilt or go under moisture stress during warm conditions. Generally it will not happen in the shade. Tire tracks, push spreader tracks, even foot prints will show up at times. Experienced cutters and golf course supers have known about this for years. Universities are mostly mystified about this one. Lots of opinion. No facts. They cannot get it to happen in the lab, in test plots or the green house. Very difficult to study. No graduate student or Ph.D candidate wants to stake his career on studying this one. Purdue has some great pictures. Others on this forum have some great pictures, too. It is not pretty.
  4. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,956


    Runner & Riggles Have both explained What and Why. But one way to try and elimitate it is to change mowing direction and pattern. However to Skip by and not cut a stressed lawn is another way also to cut down on wheel marks. Just weed whip the Shade area where Grass may be high.
  5. Victor

    Victor LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,637

    Do those areas where the brown wheel marks appear ever bounce back, or do the brown wheel marks show where you'll be reseeding the lawn? I have a few lawns where the mowing crews (I don't offer mowing service) left some. I'm sure hoping those areas bounce back.
  6. CuttingEdge LLC

    CuttingEdge LLC LawnSite Member
    Posts: 132

    as long as proper water is applied like stated before, and maybe potassium, then it will take a little time but it should return with no problem. Best thing to do is stay off of it until it recovers.

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