There is a common misconception among Midwestern homeowners that brown grass is parched grass, a symptom of the lawn not getting enough water. In fact, the opposite is often true: there are many fungi, diseases and insect issues that look similar to drought.
This summer, our lawn care team reported epic levels of lawns infected with fungal diseases, particularly among tall fescue and blue grasses. A cool, wet spring, followed by days of 100 degree heat indexes was likely the start of this problem. Homeowners see discolored grass, assume the lawn is thirsty, and water more frequently. Overwatering increases the chance of lawn fungal disease. Lawns with irrigation systems are especially prone to overwatering, bringing the lawn fungus into the neighborhood. From there, lawn mowers spread the disease around the yard, and grass clippings move the fungus from one property to another.
If you are concerned that your lawn may be infected with fungus, one easy way to prevent spreading the disease to neighbors is to bag your grass clippings when mowing. To truly fix the root of the problem, however, lawn fungus should be treated with a fungicide. Our team uses a preventive fungicide called Headway. The best application of this chemical control is as a preventive measure. If used after fungal disease is spotted, it will only help prevent the disease from further spreading; it will not cure or recover the already damaged lawn.
Homeowners are urged to schedule preventive treatments for early spring of 2017, when the fungicide treatment can be most effective. To schedule your preventive treatment, give us a call at 515.987.0800, or get started by requesting a quote. Visit our website for a full listing of our lawn care services.