Answer: If your lawn is shaded, has poor drainage, compacted and acidic soil, or is under fed, you may be dealing with a native liverwort or moss. These are light green in color and ferny-looking, and they spread by creeping over the soil surface. If the pesty growth is more yellow than green and looks stringy, it's probably dodder, a parasitic plant that takes its nourishment from other plants. Without actually seeing the problem, it's difficult to positively identify. You can take a sample to your local Extension office for diagnosis and recommendations for control. (OSU Extension Service, 182 SW Academy, Suite 202, Dallas, OR 97338. Phone (503) 623-8395.
Lawn that's well maintained has fewer problems, so put your grass on a regular feeding, mowing and watering schedule to help restore its health. Feed in April, June, September and December using a fertilizer with a 3-1-2 ratio of N-P-K. Supply one-inch of water per week during the growing season, and mow regularly, removing about 1/3 of the top growth with each mowing.
Following the above recommendations should result in a lush, green, healthy lawn. One that you can really enjoy!
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