Those brown patches that you see on your lawn may not be caused by a mere lack of water or general neglect. The problem might be something called large patch fungus.
In Florida, homeowners often plant St. Augustine or Zoysia turfgrass, and these types of grass are particularly susceptible to getting large patch fungus disease during the fall and early spring, according to a report at the University of Florida’s Gardening Solutions site. The disease tends to appear when people over apply nitrogen fertilizer or apply water later in the day or in the evening, leading to prolonged wetness.
Outbreaks of large patch fungus are not easy to manage. To preserve the lawn, homeowners are advised to contact lawn care professionals such as the team at Bug Out to ensure the problem is dealt with comprehensively. An inexperienced homeowner may not be able to get rid of large patch fungus completely, but professionals know exactly what treatment to apply and how to verify that the issue has been dealt with in full.
Large Patch Fungus Basics
Large patch fungus is also known as “brown patch” or “Rhizoctonia blight” and it is caused by an organism called Rhizoctonia solani. It affects all types of warm-season turf grass and tends to occur from November through May when the thermometer stays below 80 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the University of Florida’s Large Patch report.
Generally, homeowners can expect to see an outbreak of large patch fungus after periods of heavy rainfall or high humidity or if they have applied too much irrigation. Prolonged exposure to water (at least 48 hours) has been named the main culprit.
The first sign of large patch fungus is a small patch about 12 inches in diameter that appears yellow and then changes to straw color, brown or reddish brown as the grass leaves start dying off. Left untreated, these patches can grow to be multiple feet in diameter.
Prevention And Treatment
Instruct your lawn care professional to be sparing in usage of a quick release nitrogen fertilizer, especially during the late fall and early spring. One way to handle this is to use slow-release nitrogen products to give you steadier control.
You will also want to reevaluate your irrigation technique. The outbreak of large patch fungus may have gotten its foothold because of excessive moisture retained by the lawn due to over watering or improper irrigation design.
Make sure your lawn care professional does not run the lawn mower over an area of large patch fungus and then over a healthy part of the lawn, as this can spread the disease.
A number of professional products are available. It is best to hire a professional to apply these products. They are trained on how to use the product, when to apply them, the amount to apply and what the desired results will be.
At Bug Out, our professionally trained experts have plenty of experience in identifying and treating large patch fungus from the lawns of homes in the greater Jacksonville, Florida area and beyond. Diagnosing a lawn’s problems is something that’s best left to experts. For details on our large patch fungus treatment services or to set up an appointment, please contact the team at Bug Out today.