Monday, April 25, 2016

Zoysia patch

Though it looks non active with dry conditions, this is a form of "Brown Patch" fungus that occurs on zoysia or Bermuda, usually during spring green up. That's why we never heavily fertilize warm season grasses with nitrogen before May. Nitrogen makes fungus worse. If you have Bermuda or zoysia and see this, please call office. **please check for dry soil first!

Its not fungus, yo.

Having spent the last two days looking at spots that people thought were "Brown Patch". Here's the deal. Brown patch on cool season grasses requires thes items: Water, heat, warm nights, humidity. If one of the above is unavailable for the fungus, it can't develop. Currently, it's WAY TO DRY for cool season brown patch! How can you tell if its just drought stress? Can you easily push a Phillips head screwdriver into soil to the handle? Does your grass look skinny and round bladed? Fescue blades with adequate moisture ate generally flat. As drought stress arrives, the blades will roll into circle (to conserve moisture I believe).

Little Barley

This ugly winter annual is back! Its seeding now and then will die as temos climb. It generally germinates in non-overseeded Bermuda areas or curbs and bare spots.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Drought Stress - Irrigation - Nut Sedge!

Please make sure, if you have irrigation, that your irrigation has been activated. We are already seeing drought stress due to warmer temperatures and no significant rainfall within the past 10 days. It is my opinion that it will take at least an inch of water to re-wet those dry spots. Once a spot becomes that dry, it tends to repel water until the spot is soaked. After you have "soaked" that spot, please take a screwdriver and make sure you can push the screwdriver into the handle to make sure the soil is wet.
Remember, nut sedge germination is right around the corner, so make sure you are watering deeply and INFREQUENTLY. Watering two days a week is preferred, three days a week is maximum. Try to apply 1 inch of water, twice a week, to keep the root zone wet but the surface dry. That will reduce nut sedge issue up to 75%.
Damp soil surface = nut sedge!
Below are images of drought stress. Pictures were taken yesterday, April 20, 2016. 

Thursday, April 14, 2016

White Grass blades = Powdery Mildew

Lots of calls this week about white grass blades.  This fungus occurs on Kentucky Bluegrass in our area during cool weather, especially in shaded areas.  Tall fescue is resistant. It won't kill the bluegrass, but will damage the blades. It will disappear when weather warms and grow out of it. Fungicide is not necessary or recommended to treat powdery mildew, especially on home lawns.

Thursday, March 31, 2016

It is called TALL FESCUE for a reason!

I realize how impressive the lawns look cut at 1.5 to 2 inches right now. However, we are trying to manage TALL fescue. Right now, fescue is still producing root growth and top growth with current soil temps. Once we hit late May, the root growth slows dramatically due to rising soil temps. Two bad things happen with low mowing height. First, Root depth/mass is proportional to height of cut. If you mow higher now, you will have more root production to get you through the shake and bake of summer. 
Lastly, lower height allows more sunlight to reach soil, breaking down pre-emergents quicker and promoting summer weed invasions.
FYI - Just because your mower says 3 inches on its adjustment, doesn't make it so. Please take a ruler out right after mowing and make sure you have 3 inches of grass height remaining.
Last thing: I know you invest lots of $ into your lawn, so I understand if you want it to look mind blowing through April by mowing low. Please make sure to raise your height no later than May 1st to 3 inches. It will make us all happier in heat of summer. Thanks!

GopherX FAIL

After several trials, up to 30 minutes per tunnel, I am reporting that GopherX is a total fail on eastern moles. It may kill gophers in 3 minutes, but moles laugh at it! Trapping remains the best method to control the moles, PERIOD. Please call Keith Burgess 6154967004 for mole trapping. He is the best in Nashville.