What's wrong with this lawn?

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by B-Easy, Aug 2, 2013.

  1. B-Easy

    B-Easy LawnSite Member
    Messages: 85

    Pic of lawn and of an insect. I found a number of these along the margin where color changes. Found in other areas as well but not as many.
    Don't know if this is the cause of the discolorization. This worm like insect is white/clear and active in the crown & thatch area of the lawn. Jumps around like a earthworm. I would say it's about 1/4" long and as wide as mechanical pencil lead.

    MHlawn 001.jpg

    MHlawn 002.jpg
  2. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,808

    Maybe it is an earthworm...just a very new young one.
    Most of the major pests of turfgrass are bigger. Sod webworm, armyworm, cutworm, grubs.
    What kind of grass is this? TTTF?
    I think I see a couple square green areas like pieces of sod that are unaffected.
    Use a shovel. Check the soil and let us know. Was there an old pool that was filled in here? Sandy spot? High pH?
  3. B-Easy

    B-Easy LawnSite Member
    Messages: 85

    I have not seen the soil test but was told it was good. It is Tall Fescue. Fairly new construction area. Houses less than 10 years old. No old pool area. I was told this dicolorization only started appearing last year. Says he has to water all the time or the yellow areas turn brown. Also has these in the front yard where they appear more randomly throughout except for 2 streaks running down the grade of the yard towards the curb. They are not currently a customer of ours. Told by the Natl. Co. who is presently treating their lawn that it is Bluegrass.
  4. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    Shallow roots sitting on clay???
  5. B-Easy

    B-Easy LawnSite Member
    Messages: 85

    I went back out and pulled some cores. 1/2" or less of quality topsoil then clay and/or sand. Homeowner was looking for another possible cause but I think SmallAxe has nailed it.
    I tried to explain the only recent appearance of the loss in color as being due to 1) the drought of the last 2 years, and 2) a natural progression in the loss of the quality topsoil due to heavy rains and the porous subsoil of this fairly new homesite.
    Is there anything else I could or should have added?
    Other than topdressing is there anything that can be done? How frequently and often do you think this would need to be done to correct the issue?
  6. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    Porous soil is actually better than non-porous soil for fungal concerns,,, but I agree that plugging and topdressing is probably a good idea... If it is clay I would topdress with the manure compost to take advantage of the sandy element involved... if it is sand than straight compost or even a heavy clay based topsoil would probably help...
    As far as how often you may need to do it,,, only time will tell... :)

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