Turf problems... Soil related?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by NewbieOwner, Jun 15, 2002.

  1. NewbieOwner

    NewbieOwner LawnSite Member
    from Alberta
    Posts: 61

    Mornin everyone!

    Love it when I can take a saturday off :) Using the exmark has taken my route from 6 days a week to 5!!!

    I've been racking my brain trying to figure out some turf problems I've been coming across... Its coming up on all my lawns, basically largish 'browned' patches, almost looks like localized melt downs of leaf spot... But its not!

    About the only thing I can find in common, is most of the areas that have 'melted out' are areas where my soilprobe tells me the topsoil is quite shallow... Subsoil around here is mostly a clay and sand/tarsands mix (betcha you guys won't have much experience with tarsands!) . Some areas are hard like ciment, others are pure sand.

    Watering, aerating, fertilizing, topdressing and overseeding seems to have little or no effect on these spots.

    Any ideas? I'd really like to come up with a solution for these spots...

    Andrew
     
  2. lawnstudent

    lawnstudent LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 472

    Any pictures? Have you performed a soil test? Have you seen this before? In the same spots? What has been the weather prior to the appearance of these spots? What type of grass? What are the cultural practices on this turf? A lillte more info could aid in a diagnosis. Thanks. Good luck.

    jim
     
  3. NewbieOwner

    NewbieOwner LawnSite Member
    from Alberta
    Posts: 61

    Sorry, should have included that... Keep forgetting we don't all deal with the same situations...

    I'll try to get some pics (maybe I'll go buy a disposable camera, getting pissed with how long its taking for the digital to get fixed)

    Grass is Kentucky blue, various fescues and ryegrass mix. I don't know enough about the lawns (first year mowing all of them) the spots seem to be in the same area all the time. No new ones developing.

    What kind of soil test are you refering to? I can probably arrange to have some testing done (all I've done is the occasional stab with a soil probe, trying to get some idea as to whats going on)

    Weather has been hot and sunny, but we're getting a reasonable amount of rain (evening rain 1-2 days a week) Customers are watering properly. Virtually all the places have had an aeration this spring, cut height is 3.25" Fertilizer is probably an issue (I don't do it, I don't know of anyone in town who does) I know some customers have put down granular, I got one customer set up with some corn gluten meal, others may have used a (ick) weed n feed

    Andrew
     
  4. lawnstudent

    lawnstudent LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 472

    NewbieOwner,

    you say weather has been hot & sunny. What have the approximate daytime and night temps been over the week before the spots showed up?

    Soil tests - what is the pH (highly acidic, netral, etc.) in these spots? Is it different from the rest of the yard?

    jim
     

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