As warm-season turfgrasses continue to green up, diseases are rearing their ugly heads. The main culprit this time of year is a fungus, Rhizoctonia solani, that causes large patch disease in lawns. Large patch can infect all warm-season turfgrasses, but centipede, St. Augustine, and zoysia are particularly susceptible.
You might be reaching for the watering can here in Georgia, considering recent hot and dry conditions over most of the state. And with World Environment Day coming up on June 5, home gardeners are considering what they can do to sustainably irrigate their plants and sustain soil moisture. There are actions you can take now to help conserve water in your landscape and keep your plants hydrated.
Many residents have noticed mushrooms popping up in lawns and landscapes this season. When the “fungus among us” forms a circle or arc pattern, it’s commonly known as a fairy ring. According to medieval folklore, they were thought to appear after a band of fairies had danced in a circle. In some cases, fairy ring mushrooms can cause turfgrass discoloration or abnormal growth in lawns.
As a University of Georgia Cooperative Extension turfgrass specialist, I have recently received numerous calls and emails regarding grass selection and planting. This is likely a result of the recent warm, dry weather, which typically activates people to begin working in their landscape, and the increased number of people currently at home.
Summer 2019 delivered hot, dry weather with sporadic rainfall. With fall approaching, now is the time to adjust your turfgrass management program to promote a smooth transition into dormancy and green-up next spring.
Recent dry weather encouraged the use, and possible overuse, of irrigation systems. Followed by tropical conditions characterized by heavy rainfall and humidity, there have been reports of a jelly-like substance growing in turf.