Types of Lawn Disease in Saint George

Most of the common diseases that afflict and uglify lawns in Utah are fungal infections, caused by snow accumulation, leaving grassy areas wet and dark.  Wet and dark make an excellent habitat for fungi and molds. Fortunately, the Saint George area of Southern Utah gets hardly a skiff of snow, even in a cold spell of winter, so the moldy invaders of lawns are rarely, if ever seen in Saint George.  Lawn diseases in Saint George are, indeed, usually fungal, but are different types than the fungal invaders of a snowy region.  This article presents the most common types of lawn disease in Saint George, Utah.

Pink Snow Mold

The name belies its prevalence in Saint George, where snow seldom falls or accumulates.  All it takes is some moist, dark areas of grass in late fall or early spring for Fusarium nivalis to take hold.  It appears as irregular patches with light pink margins. The best ways to prevent it are to avoid heavy fertilization in the fall and to apply fungicides to previously infected areas in fall or spring.

Necrotic Ring Spot

An ornery lawn disease in Saint George is Necrotic Ring Spot.  When you see the scars of Ophiosphaerella korrae (say it three times fast), you’ll think you’re getting a bird’s-eye view of crop circles in your lawn. It manifests as large or small, dead circles or arcs, which can be several feet in diameter. Necrotic Ring Spot is persistent and difficult to control in spring and fall.  Dark, microscopic hyphae can be found on the grass blades. Fungal hyphae are like tiny arms with tentacles that absorb nutrients so that the genetic material inside the hyphae can proliferate and make more fungus.

Control the Necrotic Ring Spot by aerating the lawn to reduce thatch in early spring.  Also, apply low doses of nitrogen fertilizer when the grass is active and growing. Ammonium sulfate should work well.  Mow the grass at about three inches tall, and water infrequently, but deeply. Apply fungicides, and replant the area with several, hardy grass species.  Ophiosphaerella korrae loves Kentucky bluegrass, but less often infects the hardier fescues. This is another reason to plant a mix of fescues in your Saint George lawn, not Kentucky bluegrass.

Summer Patch

Summer Patch (Magnaportha Graminicola) fungus looks very similar to Necrotic Ring Spot; it takes a scholar to distinguish them.  Prevention and treatment are the same. Summer Patch is one lawn disease in Saint George that sometimes requires tearing up the sod, applying herbicide, and starting over.

Fairy Ring

Fairy Ring (Basidiomycete fungi) is sometimes seen as a lawn disease in Saint George.  It appears as dark, green circles with mushrooms growing in the bands of dark green.  Prostar fungicide will suppress it. Keep the lawn evenly fertilized to improve appearance.  Aerate the grass or use silicone surfactant to increase water penetration into the rings.

Powdery Mildew

When spots of white mildew appear on leaves or grass blades, it’s a strong indication of powdery mildew from Erysiphe Graminis.  It occurs in shady areas and causes minor damage. Sunlight prevents it, so don’t plant grass in heavily shaded areas. Fescue fights powdery mildew better than bluegrass.  Water deeply, but infrequently. Fungicides help, and remember, sunlight is the key. Powdery Mildew is only an occasional lawn disease in Saint George because of the town’s abundance of sunshine.

Types of Lawn Disease in Saint George

Types of Lawn Disease in Saint George

Article By: Clear Content Marketing