Can a dormant lawn look like this-or disease?

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by mikesturf, Jul 26, 2011.

  1. mikesturf

    mikesturf LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 797

    We have been having hot and humid days with no rain for 3 weeks (it just rained 6 inches this weekend, so I'm watching for some recovery). Lawns are KBG, fescue and rye.

    Many lawns in my area, fertilized or unfertilized have this issue going on. The affected areas are in the sun and the unaffected areas are green which are in the shade. The lawns that are irrigated look much better.

    My question is CAN THIS BE JUST DORMANCY? So many times people just jump in a spray a fungicide and/or apply Dylox.

    On my treated lawns I've used Merit so its not grubs.

    The grass does not pull up when tugged. This is my lawn. I haven't mowed in 3 weeks, been so dry. This is the first year I haven't watered. I've applied 1/2 lb of N in April and 3/4 lb in mid June with Merit.



    Last edited: Jul 26, 2011
  2. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    My guess is that the tire tracks has been killing some of he grass... either through running over it when its too wet then drying to compaction or heat stress and driven over when dried out... lot of straight lines in the dead zones...

    disease could be a part of the problem, but most likely because the turf is in trouble from other factors...
  3. mikesturf

    mikesturf LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 797

    Its not tire tracks, I haven't mowed for 3 weeks and these areas get no foot traffic.
  4. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    Something is going on there with those lines... plug the soil in those spots and see what that can tell you...
  5. MnLefty

    MnLefty LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 367

    Given your description of no rain, shaded areas and irrigated look better I would diagnose as simply good old fashioned drought stress. The uneven appearance could likely be differentiation/segregation of the different species/varieties of grass. Some tolerate the heat and drought a little better than others.

    Most of the similar stuff I saw a few weeks ago recovered in a few days up to 10 days after a good soaking rain.

    It seems we all overthink things from time to time as far as disease, grubs, whatever, and tend to dismiss the simplest explanation or think "there has to be something more going on." I know I do it myself too often.
  6. mikesturf

    mikesturf LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 797

    There are many lawns where there are no lines, just random spots in the sunny areas, where the shaded areas look fantastic.

    As far as pulling a plug, if you are thinking high thatch, I have very little thatch. I double core aerate in the fall.
  7. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    No I wasn't thinking thatch I was thinking soil...
  8. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,665

    Mnlefty has it right. Drought. As you can see some clumps of perennial ryegrass turned brown and left some clumps of a hardier bluegrass type, (maybe).
    And yes, I see some slight mower tracks from weeks ago.
  9. agrostis

    agrostis LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,529

    Looks like drought stress to me.
  10. FERT-TEK

    FERT-TEK LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,035

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