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Old 06-21-2008, 03:11 PM   #1
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Large areas of grass dying


We had sod put in about 6 weeks ago and for about 3 weeks we were watering the yard twice per day for about 12-15 minutes per zone.

After that we moved to watering just once per day (in the morning).

About a week ago we noticed two different spots of our yard where the grass has started dying and it seems to be spreading.

Any ideas what we're doing wrong? (Pictures attached below)

We live in Denver, CO. Temperatures have been in the mid-80's with full sun. I mow the lawn once per week with a push reel mower and keep the grass around 2-3 inches in length.
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Large areas of grass dying-deadgrass_01.jpg   Large areas of grass dying-deadgrass_02.jpg  

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Old 06-21-2008, 09:04 PM   #2
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Large areas of grass dying


Pests, most likely. Check these links out.

http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn7476.html

http://www.pestproducts.com/lawnpests.htm
http://www.pestproducts.com/deadgrass.htm

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Old 06-21-2008, 10:38 PM   #3
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Large areas of grass dying


Quote:
Originally Posted by Shpigford View Post
We had sod put in about 6 weeks ago and for about 3 weeks we were watering the yard twice per day for about 12-15 minutes per zone.

After that we moved to watering just once per day (in the morning).

About a week ago we noticed two different spots of our yard where the grass has started dying and it seems to be spreading.

Any ideas what we're doing wrong? (Pictures attached below)

We live in Denver, CO. Temperatures have been in the mid-80's with full sun. I mow the lawn once per week with a push reel mower and keep the grass around 2-3 inches in length.
Put down some starter fertilizer and keep watering. Full sun means the grass is getting dried out.

The burn areas on the edges is a good indicator, especially since those areas are near plants that are competing for water.

All in all, it's expected when you put down sod during the spring. Ideal time is really fall, so that the roots can take their time to get established.
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Old 06-25-2008, 11:43 AM   #4
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Large areas of grass dying


I would check for grubs. See if you can pull up some of that dead grass and look in the dirt where the roots are. if you see grubs you know your problem then can seek a solution. Could also be lack of water or poor prep before sodding. If not grubs do as suggested, up the water and add some starter fert.
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Old 06-30-2008, 04:57 PM   #5
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Large areas of grass dying


All great suggestions - I would add - take a soil sample - the PH might be off.

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Old 07-05-2008, 12:27 PM   #6
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Large areas of grass dying


If it starts to spread, it could also be fungus. I lost my front yard last year. Thinking it looked drought stressed, I kept watering but it got worse and worse. I finally took some pictures and plant samples to my local nursery and he said it was fungus and showed me what to look for. I applied fungicide but it was already too far gone to save. I totally reseeded last fall and got an excellent stand. This spring I started watching it very close and have been applying fungicide every 3 weeks as per directions and I have been staying ahead of it.

The nurseryman told me to go by the Rule of 150 for fungicide application. That is, when the daytime high temperature added to the humidity level totals 150 or more, then conditions are perfect for fungus to develope and fungicide application should begin. Usually a preventative rate is about half that of a curative rate, so its cheaper to get started early.

Good luck,

Dave
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Old 07-05-2008, 04:24 PM   #7
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Large areas of grass dying


24-30 minutes / day of irrigation may have been WAY too much (soil type is determining factor). It looks like the grass has dried out. Push a shovel in 6-8" to see that it's moist. If it is, and has stayed moist, the you likely need to deal with fungus - a result of initial overwatering.

A rookie mistake with new sod is to keep it too sopping wet after the first day or 2.

Once the soil below the sod has gotten fully hydrated (usually after a day or 3), you only need to keep the top wet. Set the timer for three or four watering cycles each day, just long enough to keep the sod damp, not glistening wet, and not dry.

Heat & wind combine to dry things out. The lawn's microclimate will determine water requirements.

Run time for irrigation is largely misunderstood. Some nozzles apply very fast (Rainbird VAN nozzles) and some very slow (MP Rotator nozzles). 2 minute with a VAN nozzle equals 10-12 minutes with an MP Rotator.

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