The Q&A Archives: Dead Spots on Lawn

Question: My fescue lawn has numerous dead spots throughout. What might be causing this problem, and how can I remedy the situation?

Answer: The first thing to rule out is if the problem is being caused by neighborhood dogs who visit your lawn. Dog urine can cause brown spots.

Some tall fescues are susceptible to brown patch. Conditions favoring the disease include hot, humid weather; overly wet, overfertilized lawns; and a thick layer of thatch. You can reduce the chance of future outbreaks by watering deeply and infrequently, and allowing grass to dry between waterings. Also, you might want to aerate the lawn to help break down the thatch. Be sure you are not overfeeding with a nitrogen-rich fertilizer.

You may also want to test your soil to check levels of calcium, phosphorus, and potassium, since improper levels of these nutrients can encourage the disease.

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