The onset of heat and humidity, combined with summer’s rainstorms, creates ideal conditions for fungal diseases to attack Atlanta yards. Lawn fungus is a type of disease that comes in several different forms including dead patches, defined spots, rings or slimes. Until healthy soil has been established, your turf is at heightened risk for lawn fungus, particularly during the summer months. The best approach to controlling fungus in your grass is to prevent it in the beginning, but building up that immunity takes time. There are also options for treating unsightly fungal diseases when they do strike.
What Causes Fungal Diseases: Lawns are naturally filled with fungi, good and bad. A combination of variables can cause these spores to spread out of control into destructive diseases. Lawn fungi can erupt into full-blown diseases when certain conditions align:
- Compacted soil
- Over or under watering
- Over or under fertilizing
- Extreme humidity
- Temperature fluctuations
Identifying Atlanta Lawn Fungus: Learning to identify these funguses early will save you both time and money when going through the treatment process:
- Brown Patch: The most common local fungus we see is brown patch. It typically attacks Zoysia and Fescue, beginning small but quickly expanding to larger tan patches. With the exception of the green crown where the grass meets the ground, the blades will be yellow.
- Dollar Spot: Dollar spot is a common problem in both warm and cool-season grasses. It begins with small, straw-colored spots nearly the size of a silver dollar and spreads rapidly if left untreated.
- Pythium Blight: When afflicted with this disease, grass blades will look like they’ve been soaked with water or oil first and then shrivel to a brown or gray color. You may also see fungal growth resembling white cobwebs, particularly in severe humidity.
- Fairy Ring: This disease affects all types of grass and is easy to diagnose with its ring of dark green or mushrooms that surround the area of dead grass.
Preventative Measures: Committing to an organic approach to lawn care will help you build up healthy soil that resists these common fungal infections. Begin taking measures now to help your lawn thrive and crowd out diseases naturally.
- Aerate annually to help reduce soil compaction.
- Reduce shade by pruning back trees and shrubs. This will allow for more sunlight to reach the soil. Observe effective watering practices, including watering in the morning and monitoring moisture intake of 1-inch per week.
- Follow proper mowing routines, removing only 1/3 of the blade at each cut.
- Use organic fertilizers, but be sure to follow directions to avoid over or under fertilizing, which can actually promote fungal disease.
Treating Lawn Fungus: Establishing disease-resistant turf takes time, commitment and patience. Fungal diseases may cause extreme frustration in your journey to obtaining a beautiful organic lawn, but they are only a minor setback, especially if treated early. Most lawn funguses respond well to fungicide treatments. Luckily, organic options are available. Our fungicide treatments help to reduce fungal spores, which keeps these diseases at bay.
Investing in an organic turf care regimen has so many tremendous benefits, including increased disease resistance. Fight off lawn fungus the organic way, using organic treatments and building up a naturally healthy soil that’s less susceptible to these fungal threats.