With Fall upon us and the Holidays approaching, the break in summer temperatures typically provide the landscape with a welcome relief from the extreme heat, humidity, and excessive rainstorms associated with hurricane season in North Florida.
With that in mind, a few simple adjustments in cultural practices will go a long way in preventing potential Fall diseases, excessive weed growth, and other issues in your lawn.
- For well established St. Augustine lawns, reduce irrigation, or cut off irrigation system entirely if you are able to manually operate it as needed. Only water if 30-50% of your lawn shows drought symptoms (blades folding vertically, grass not bouncing back from foot traffic). For established Zoysia lawns, water every 3 rd day with h inch water to maintain color in the absence of rainfall (more in full sun areas, half in shade areas).
- Do not water the lawn in the evenings. Watering late day in the Fall encourages Brown Patch Disease (Rhizoctonia) which can cause irregular brown patches of turf decline. This fungal pathogen is particularly active in the Fall as air and soil temps begin to cool. There’s no cure or absolute preventative for brown patch disease, but it can be controlled and treated to prevent its spread and severity. Should you encounter brown patch in your lawn, our fungicide treatments will control/manage it so there is little, if any, evidence of it in the Spring when your lawn emerges from Winter. Water early in the mornings if possible so that the lawn has a chance to dry out before nightfall. Wet grass blades that cannot dry out encourage the fungi…so we want to limit moisture and keep the lawns as dry as possible over night.
- Mow often…be as consistent as possible with mowing/trimming/edging once weekly until the lawn begins to slow its growth for the season. This is very important and shouldn’t be underestimated for optimal health and appearance. Mowing consistently improves air circulation to the turf and soil line which is important in preventing fungal diseases like brown patch. Mowing consistently is also important in reducing weed populations by preventing weed seed head development. When too much time between cutting is allowed, seed heads from weeds develop and are distributed back into the lawn.
No lawn care company, pest control service, or agronomic program can guarantee your lawn will not ever encounter a fungus or disease. However, we do our best to prevent it and treat all active diseases with fungicides and other soil amendments as part of our program. We ask for your help with the cultural aspects of lawn care that we do not control to achieve optimum results. Our Fall fertilization also includes a pre/post emergent weed control treatment, insect control treatment for grubs, billbugs, chinchbugs, webworms, mole crickets, fire ants, fleas, ticks, and many more pests… providing the safest, most effective value for your family and landscape. Thank you so much for your referrals this season…let’s keep it growing!
Green Earth Solutions, Inc.