Grass, just like any plant, can be afflicted with fungal diseases. Fungal diseases spread through fungus spores that usually do nothing to grass. However, under the right conditions, these fungal pathogens can spread and cause disease.
There isn’t just one type of fungal disease, either: there are dozens, and some types of fungal disease are more common in some areas than others. For this reason, it’s important to understand what fungal infections can be hurting your grass, how they spread, and how to prevent them.
How To Identify Lawn Fungus Diseases
It’s not always easy to tell whether or not your lawn has a fungal disease or if there’s some other issue. However, most fungal diseases have tell-tale signs that will tell you what’s going on.
Some signs that your grass may be dealing with a fungal disease are:
- Patches of grass that are white, yellow, brown, or slightly gray in color that are growing in diameter. Or, patches of frayed, mangled, or dried out grass blades.
- Possible diseases: Brown patch disease, summer patch disease, rust lawn disease.
- Grass stems that have spots. Typical colors: black, red, orange, purple, gray.
- Possible diseases: Leaf spot, dollar spot, gray leaf spot.
- Darkened, damp, or slimy grass that doesn’t coincide with rain or watering.
- Possible diseases: pythium lawn disease, snow mold.
- Powdery coatings on and around grass blades, often close to the thatch. This is a clear sign that you’re dealing with a fungal infection; likely red thread lawn disease.
There are other fungal diseases that we haven’t listed that may be a little less common. Consult a lawn care professional for a diagnosis!
How To Get Rid Of & Treat Grass Fungus
- Keep soil pH at the right level (6-7 pH, depending on your grass seed).
- Fertilize properly. Different grass seeds need different levels of fertilization.
- Keep your lawn well watered. Don’t overwater your lawn: 1-1.5 inches of water per week is enough.
- Mow your grass high, and often. This doesn’t directly impact fungal growth but it does keep grass healthy enough to fight off potential fungal infections.
- Dethatch lawns and aerate soil regularly. Aim for a thatch slayer about 0.5 inches thick.
- Last resort: use pesticides made specifically for that type of fungus.
Contact A Lawn Care Professional Today!
If you’re concerned that your lawn is dealing with a fungal disease, the problem might be worse than you can see. You may have a lawn that is particularly susceptible to fungal disease due to geography, weather conditions, or lack of necessary lawn maintenance.