Turflon/Fusilade mix on Fescue: Learn from my Fail

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by ksJoe, Jun 25, 2010.

  1. ksJoe

    ksJoe LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 676

    I'm a homeowner who hangs around here to leach info off you guys occasionally. There seemed to be a lot questions and uncertainty among you pros about what is safe and what isn't for Bermuda control in Fescue. So I thought I'd add my experience to wealth of knowledge here and see if you have any advice. That's why this post is so long. I'm trying include anything you might find useful. Plus, I get a good laugh from other people's "Learn From My Fail" discussions, but had never started one myself.

    So... Here's my history with Fusilade II, Turflon Estor, Bermuda and Fescue.

    Last fall as it was cooling off, I applied Fusilade, and had good success. It seemed to hurt the Bermuda, and the Fescue tolerated it ok. Since I was using a hose end sprayer, I started well below label rate and worked up slowly. I waited a week or two between apps, increasing the rate until I saw good Bermuda injury with good Fescue Tolerance. Its hard to tell with a hose end sprayer, but my guess is the final rate was at or slightly below the label.

    I saw the thread about the research on mixing Fusilade and Turflon to control Bermuda in Fescue, and how the mix of the mix lessened the impact to the Fescue. I emailed the author of the study asking if they tested for increased tolerance in heat, but didn't get an answer to that question.

    This spring was busy, so I didn't get it applied at the optimal time. I thought I had missed my chance for the spring, and would have to wait for fall. Then a couple weeks ago, it cooled off again. The forecast for the whole week was in the 80's. It had rained a lot, and we have an irrigation well now, so water was not going to be a problem. I had recalled threads about Fescue tolerating this much better with ample water, I decided to chance it.

    I mixed up a gallon (fusilade II, Turflon Ester @ label rate, plus surfactant) and applied it with a small pump up sprayer. It looked good for the cool week. The Bermuda looked unhappy (but not dead), and the Fescue growth slowed, but it was still doing fine.

    Then about a week after application, it hit mid to upper 90's again. :cry:

    We've had about a week of that. I know exactly where I sprayed, because the Fescue didn't grow a bit between mowings. Before I mowed yesterday it literally looked like someone went out there with hair trimmers and neatly trimmed some areas to 2.75", and left the rest of the yard a shaggy 3.5-3.75. The color isn't too bad, its very slightly yellowed, but after a fresh mow you really have to look to see what's what.

    This is only about 1,000 sq feet anyway, so its not a disaster if it dies. But I'd rather not see it die in the heat of the summer.

    Does anyone know if it is dead for sure, and will just take time to brown out and decompose?
    Or is it likely to pull through?
    Anything I can do to help it?

    I've bumped up the sprinkler (daily and long). I've thought about putting down some fertilizer. Would that help? I hadn't done fert this spring, but did a couple .75-1 lb N applications in fall and late fall (since I've read that is the most important for spring health anyway, and spring fertilize can exhaust the plant growing too fast).
  2. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 18,334

    Watering the piss out of it is not going to make it better. If anything you are probably making it worse by doing this.

    Generally not a good idea to fertilize fescue (or any cool season grass) in the summer. If you feel you need to do this, I might suggest a liquid spoon feeding of N.
  3. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,457

    Take a careful look--maybe it is disease--partly as a result of the slow growth of the fescue. Brown patch comes to mind.

    I hope it works out.
  4. kirk1701

    kirk1701 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    Had the same thought come to mind especially with the fact you've bumped up the sprinkler (daily and long).

    Pic's would be nice and would give us something to better diagnose.

    Whatever you do, disease or not don't put no fertilizer down now.
  5. kirk1701

    kirk1701 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    As for your bermuda in the fescue, I find it easier to just take the time and surpress it the old fashion way; pull it up.

Share This Page