Grass discoloration...Why

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by scottm1, Dec 2, 2007.

  1. scottm1

    scottm1 LawnSite Member
    from Mo
    Messages: 109

    I just planted my yard this fall. New house construction. I planted 1.25 -1.50 acres with 600 lbs of fescue. Fertilized it, applied calcium, and strawed it all. Grass did really well even though a downpour 7 days later did wash some gulleys here and there and washed away some of my seed. Most of the grass is very thick and dark green, but my problem is some areas of it is kind of a pale yellow. There seems to be no rhyme or reason why the areas that are yellow should be. I first thought that maybe those were the wet areas where water might be standing after a rain, but I might have a yellow patch on a high spot of the yard making that not seem like the cause. Can anyone tell me what this is caused by and what should I do to correct it? Attached is a photo of one area of the yard that shows what I am trying to explain. Any help much appreciated.

  2. mkroher

    mkroher LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 539

    how long ago was it seeded?
  3. Hissing Cobra

    Hissing Cobra LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 705

    Right, How long ago was it seeded? How many times have you applied fertilizer? What was your watering schedule like? Is it irrigated? If not, how do you water 1.5 acres regularly? Growing grass isn't hard, it's the maintenance that can sometimes be a hinderance.
  4. scottm1

    scottm1 LawnSite Member
    from Mo
    Messages: 109

    It was seeded 7-8 weeks ago. It was fertilized only once just before it was seeded and calcium was applied right after it was seeded and strawed.
  5. scottm1

    scottm1 LawnSite Member
    from Mo
    Messages: 109

    It was watered each day. It was a real pain to keep it all watered, but my wife and I both worked very hard at it. Between the two of us and different work schedules we were able to keep it damp most of the time in the morning and early afternoon up until the last month after it got cooler.
  6. mkroher

    mkroher LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 539

    I would say it's the light green color seedlings get. Some of the grass is more mature than the rest. I would fertilize it again. I don't know what your weather is like though.

    It could be going dormant too.
  7. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,800

    By calcium--do you mean lime? Did you have a soil test?

    True it seems to follow a drainage pattern.

    Most likely cause is uneven soil conditions from when the lot was cleared and graded. Sandy spot? Subsoil, not topsoil in the spot? Try a good fall fertilizer--if that corrects it--it was an uneven fertility situation.

    Check for disease, like rust for example. Also could be pythium if drainage was poor and temps were hot earlier in year.

    Hope we helped--let us know what happens.

    LIBERTYLANDSCAPING LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 1,283

    Areas in question lack in nitrogen-Period! Having been in the installation end for a number of years, I can tell you this- It's hard to overfeed a newly seeded lawn. The new plants need lots of nutrients-MUCH MORE than an established lawn would. Add in the fact that you have no thatch layer to help hold nutrients, you use up your N very quickly. I found in general hitting it with 1.25-1.5# of N (w 25-40% scu) about a month after seeding to be about perfect. There is not much forgiveness on a newly seeded lawn when N starts getting used up, as you can see everywhere that it is deficient. Add to that the fact that newly seeded, malnurished plants are easily affected by rust fungus at this time of the year. :waving:
  9. rcreech

    rcreech Sponsor
    Male, from OHIO
    Messages: 6,163

    Agree totally!

    I do a lot of seeding also...and I can never get my customers to let me do a starter at seeding and one 3-4 weeks later. They usually only let me do one, and I think that is a mistake. If you are going to spend the money to seed...they why not feed it correctly? It is cheaper to fert then to reseed!

    Also, you said you used straw, which will can suck up N and turn areas yellow.

    I am not a big fan of straw, and to me it is just an added expense.

    I only use straw on seedings in the summer months so they hold moisture better. I NEVER use straw on spring and fall seedings! I have found straw to "smother" out areas and cause blanks and I even go light (about 60% coverage). I get a much better stand of grass without using straw and the lawn thickens up much quicker.

    Can't tell you how many people/customers I have had to prove this to, as everyone thinks you need straw when you seed. I have a lot of fun with it, because people think I nuts until they see my results!

    I laugh every time I see a homeowner that reseeds a small area in their front lawn. The straw is like 8" thick and I just laugh to myself!
  10. mdlwn1

    mdlwn1 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,443

    Definately look into the PH towards the left in the photo. Liberty is dead on about the N. It's rare out here to find new construction that doesnt have some major PH inconsistancies.

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