How Do I know If My Lawn Is Dead Or Dormant?
No doubt about it, this has been a tough summer for turf grass. Many of you are seeing turf and lawn damage. But is your grass dead or just dormant. It’s not always easy to tell, but here is a list of things to look for.
- Dormant cool season grass will have a straw yellow color and will tend to stand up, at least to some extent. When you pull up on the blades of grass, the roots are firmly attached to the soil.
- Dead turf grass will have a mud brown color and will lay flat, close to the ground. When you pull up on the blades, the roots will easily pull out of the soil, or simply break off at the surface.
- If most of the turf area is green and growing, but a few spots remain brown and start to fill in with weeds, most likely the turf grass is dead.
If you determine the turf grass is only dormant, you can simply wait for cool wet weather to return. The lawn should recover just fine.
My grass is dead, now what? If your turf grass is dead, there isn’t much you can do but reseed the effected areas. We have several techniques to repair damaged turf grass. After looking over the effected lawn, we can give you our suggested solution as well as cost to make the repairs.
If you are unsure, it would be best to call a turf grass professional in your area. Most professional turf grass companies will provide a lawn evaluation and quote free of charge.
Turf And Lawn Damage
We set some new records, and ran up electric bills this summer. Your lawn may have gone brown months ago depending upon your location. Irrigation was a big help if you have it.
It’s really nice to see the lawns green again. As a general rule, turf grass is pretty tough. it can withstand extended periods of heat, and extended periods of drought. But, put the two together, and we have a recipe for problems.
A severe lack of moisture can create other problems beside the straw colored grass you see below your feet. Extended dry periods cause the soil temperature to dramatically rise, which in turn causes crabgrass and other noxious annual weeds to germinate in earnest. While your cool weather-loving turf is asleep trying to just survive, weeds can pop up and seemingly grow inches a day. This is especially true of crabgrass, even with a preventative treatment applied in the spring since the product’s life span only lasts into late July or early August. Super heated soil creates an ideal growing environment for crabgrass, even in the best cared for lawns. A light touch is the best course of action until September arrives and restoration efforts can begin.
A more serious side to drought is the fact it attracts all kinds of heat loving insects like Japanese beetles, chinch bugs and sod webworm to name just a few. Damage can be occurring right under your feet without a hint of the battle raging in the soil or on the hot brown surface of your beloved lawn. Left unchecked, fall rainfall comes and your lawn never recovers, which might be attributed to small grubs feeding from late summer right into fall.
Even those grassy areas lucky enough to have irrigation or some shade are not immune to the heat and humidity. I have seen plenty of brown patch disease rising up overnight due to humidity and wet grass, with the resulting damage visible the next morning. The best advice in a hot summer with a significant lack of rainfall is to stay off the lawn if possible, watch and treat for insects as necessary, and irrigate if possible in the early morning.
Any fertilizer used should be at a low rate, slow release, and generally granular in nature. With autumn only a month away, we are at the top of the roller coaster and things should slowly begin to improve as August fades into September. If your lawn has taken a hit like many have, plan now to have restoration services lined up in order to take advantage of the best growing time of year for grass – fall! Services like core aeration, over seeding, lime, and organic or natural fertilizers can bring a lawn back to life in preparation for next summer.