What Does the Patch Mean? Diagnose Your Lawn

  • Written by: Killingsworth Environmental
  • June 19, 2017

Identifying Your Brown Patches

If you see a brown patch in your lawn, there could be various reasons causing it. Look at the possibilities we compiled below to help you diagnose and doctor your yard back to health!

1. Chemicals

Gasoline, fertilizer, herbicides, and pesticides can all burn your grass if they’re spilled on your lawn. Yes, fertilizer is used to give your yard nutrients, but if it is applied unevenly or incorrectly, it can cause more harm than good! Make sure you are reading directions of these chemicals and handling them properly.

2. Pets

We love our furry companions, but they can wreck havoc on our lawns! Their urine usually causes spots of grass to turn yellow. Occasionally, there will be a bright green ring around the edges of these spots from the diluted nitrogen in the urine. To prevent these dead patches, learn how you can have both dogs and a great lawn!

3. Soil Quality

Just like flowers, grass needs soil nutrients to grow healthy and green. Poor soil quality can cause brown, bare areas or moss. Test your soil with chemical testing strips to see if it needs chemical adjustment. We also recommend taking a screwdriver (or similar object) and pushing it into the brown spot soil. If it doesn’t go easily, your soil is too compact and would benefit from aeration.

4. Buried Debris

Another fun habit of dogs is they like to bury toys and bones. If these go unnoticed, they can mess up your lawns rooting. Take your screwdriver-like object and poke around a little to see if anything is underneath the sod that might be causing your grass to die.

5. Drought

Healthy lawns need about an inch of water per week. The more compact your soil is, the more susceptible your lawn is to draught damage, as water cannot easily pass through. Consider setting up an irrigation system and schedule, especially if you don’t have rain for more than a week.

6. Lawn ‘Season’

There are different kinds of grasses that perk up in different seasons. Cool-season lawns, for example, go dormant during the heat of summer, while warm-season lawns are thriving. If your yard has a mixture of both kinds of grasses, you’ll see some dormant areas all year long. Check your grass type to figure out when it will be dormant.

7. Disease

Sometimes your yard can get sick – just like us! It can get a bad case of fungal diseases when it is in moist conditions, like these humid spring and summer days. The disease may show up as circular or irregular brown spots in your lawn, or you might notice general dying/thinning as your trim the lawn.

Get a sample of the affected grass for diagnosis and reach out to a professional. Maximizing yard air circulation and sunlight will also prevent fungus in your lawn

For any special diagnosis, reach out to the lawn care specialists at Killingsworth and we’ll swing by to take a look.

For more information on lawn care best practices, tips and tricks, check out our free Killingsworth Workbook!

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