diseased lawn - Knowledgebase Question

lakeland, Fl
Question by lgcoolg
June 17, 2010
Your last recommendation solved my problem, thanks.
My latest problem is what seems like a creeping (spreading) yellowing of various small patches of my St. Augustine grass.
My lawn used to be sprayed by a commercial sprayer but I stopped it. Rdsight now I am fetilizing with Scotts and most of the lawn looks good. What can you recommend this time? THANKS AGAIN ...Larry G.
Lakeland FL

Answer from NGA
June 17, 2010


Glad we've been helpful in the past. We'll try to continue to be helpful. Yellow spots can indicate insect activity, a fungal disease, or even dog spots so I can't really diagnose the problem for you. Check first for chinch bugs (just drag your foot over the top of the lawn - chinch bugs will jump onto the top of your shoe); then check for grubs (cut out a section of the lawn that has both yellow and green grass - grubs, if they are present, will be found on the soil surface or clinging to the roots of the turf). You can replace the piece of sod you dug out, tamp it down with your food and water it well and it will re-establish within a few weeks.

If you can't find insects, and you don't think the problem is dog urine, that leaves us with a potential disease. Take-All Root Rot commonly shows up as yellow spots in St. Augustine. Roots are usually short, blackened and rotted, and the stolons (runners) can easily be lifted from the soil due to the poor root system. As the disease progresses, the yellow leaf blades will eventually turn brown.

Take-All Root Rot can often be mistaken for Brown patch. These two diseases can be distinguished by pulling on the leaf blades of the yellow to brown leaves. Leaves of Take-All Root Rot plants are still firmly attached to the stolons, while leaves with Brown patch can easily be pulled away from the stolons. Also, Brown patch rarely causes the roots to turn black.

If you find that your St. Augustine is diseased, fungicides such as Heritage, Rubigan and BannerMaxx may help control the problem. Best wishes with your lawn.

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