Lawns turning brown after cutting

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by 130perweek, Jun 21, 2009.

  1. ^^ The red thread is just beyond belief......Did I miss something?
  2. kirk1701

    kirk1701 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    Seeing the same symptoms here in Kentucky. I'm just a homeowner so it was actually good to see I'm not alone (surrounding lawns are worse)

    The weeds here are greener then the lawns :laugh:

    6" plus of rain for June alone but now the temps are in the 90-95 range, drying up quick and actually quiet pleased with mine, followed what you guys here said, get the N down before mid spring and STOP! :rolleyes:

    Did a soil test about three weeks ago, just a little low on lime so did a light lime since then but thats it. Except spot spray for nutsedge

    Not growing much, mowing once every two weeks. Thinking about putting down some compost now.
  3. At this point in time, I wish my lawns would only take one cutting every 2 weeks.
  4. kirk1701

    kirk1701 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981


    Hey, I just did exactly as you guys told me last fall and what can I say; it worked :drinkup:

    Like I said, it is 90-95 here and fescue does go dormant in this heat so thats the real reason.
  5. Whitey4

    Whitey4 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,448

    The lawns I am fertilizing (which is all of them, less a couple of un-ferted mows) don't have that kind of top growth. Still, I am often cutting off half the top growth with all this rain. That even exposes stems at 3 1/2 inch cuts.

    Not sure what to make of your next post about missing something... red thread is severe this year, and cuts expose the damage, which is brown. I've spoken to quite a few folks about this at the NSLGA meetings and while on my route. Are you legal for pesticides like fungicide apps?
  6. alltoroformetwo

    alltoroformetwo LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    Are they bermuda lawns? If so 3.5 inches is too much.
  7. Whitey4

    Whitey4 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,448

    No bermuda in NY unless it's on a putting green.
  8. alltoroformetwo

    alltoroformetwo LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    Yeah I guess it would only be green for a month or two.
  9. Brown & Co.

    Brown & Co. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 134

    Everyone's got the same ideas...the only way to know for sure is to research it and learn. :) Your in an industry that's always coming up with new ways to do things to be more effective and effecient. Never cut more than a 1/3 of the blade because it has a high chance of stressing out the grass. From a biological aspect you never know how that stress will effect the grass. Could effect it in numerous ways such as the plants photosynthesis or weaking of the plants infastructure due to a lack there of...theoretically you wont know whats really causing it with 100% certainty. Remember the steps you've taken and what works to get the result you want. I also saw that you had mentioned mowing and fertilizing in the same sentance...Im just assuming you might be putting it down the same time your mowing or even a couple of days after mowing. If thats the case you may try waiting about 3 days or so after you mow to put down your fert. Its just one more thing that could be lending ahand to the brown color/stress. Heat (as well as a dry cold) also if you fertilized and its wanting to become fairly dry in your area it chould cause a burning apperance. Also not sure what type of grass it is but 3.5 IMO for a cut is too high unless its a grass like st.augustine but at that hight you should be cuting it every3 or 4 days almost maybe not quite that much but close. In those cases that its to be mowed at 3 inches your most certainly going to have to be cutting it weekly...DONT fret...just inform your client whats happening and why you think its happing (this is why doing your own research is key since its your suggestion to your client.) Charge them for the extra mows or anything you do on the property grounds. Your services are not free Im sure. Hell once you get your knowledge down on the subject charge for your suggestions afterall it was your hard work and time learning it right. Getting back to the case at hand...soil tests are great as mentioned before although the way it was mentioned is not the whole thing. They also when done through the right network (everyone has their own ppl) the report will tell you what micro/trace elements you might need. It lets you know the pH of the lawn and Lime is usually used to raise or lower it. BUT thats only part of it. As others have mentioned fungus and disease...if most of your accounts are experiencing this problem and it is a disease/fungus it chould be hitching a ride on the underside of your mower just waiting for you to spread it to the next lawn. ( if thats the case wash the undercarage of the mower and dry it after each lawn until you find out what lawns are infected and you treat them or have some one treat them and they havnt shown sinse of disease or fungus for about a full season. Just be safe. would hate to see another company get in serious trouble for infecting someone elses property expescially if its a fairly large commercial piece that the owner would then have to fix with his own money... that will piss some one off something fierce I know I would be. BUT More than likly its a combination of watering, nutrients, weeds, and if your remaing grass thats 3.5 inches is brown thats alot of thatch, Im thinking, and with tempatures raising that could become devistaing to the lawns appearance. Even more so if your clients are watering too much (which could cause your grass to go dormant early if temperatures fall and that extra moisture in combination with the thatch freezes; the same goes for the oposite weather conditions....lets say its getting hotter which is your case I believe that extra moisture could be baking your grass at the ground level. Note Decomposition favors warm dark and moisture prolly more so humidity on a microscopic scale. As you can see other problems feed off of other problems. First and for most you cant work on an over grown lawn. that would be the first problem with it. Mow it regularly and mow it often...sometime even changing the usual direction you cut at changes the way the grass stands and in turn changes how it grows. Every lawn/property is unique. Thats one reason soil tests are taken with numberous collections throughout the entire property grounds. This is only been my experience...Im more than certain people have come up with diferent and also had execlent results. My suggestion would be to get that lawn scheduled to be cut regularly when it NEEDS it. That would be when the grass has grown 1/3 of its recommended length (sorry im not being specific as I dont know what type of grass it is). That could be once a month (not likly), every other month (still not really the case year round.), I would let your client know you will need to cut the lawn every 10-15 days as you have NO idea what the weather is going to be like. If your lawn is runing smoothly and you MAINTAIN it at the proper cut height those other problems we discussed earlier will diminish enough to figure out just whats causeing it. It will eliminate the thatch (may take a rake or a thatcher.) Its hard work being on top of a persons lawn ....if you actually do care about the property grounds...theres a difference. One person is just there to cut the lawn and thats it. the other is there to figure out whats going on and fix the problems as they occur, often retracing steps. If you have some specific questions about something you want to try that might help us forum members brainstorm your situation. As it stands theres too much to diagnose with all the things listed. Im here to help as my schedule allows and my email is listed on my profile if you would like to shoot me a private message with your specifics.
  10. MileHigh

    MileHigh LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,466

    ^^^Dude....Paragraphs man, Paragraphs.

    nobody's gonna read all that typed in that way:dizzy:

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