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Old 10-11-2016, 02:07 PM   #1
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Lawn disease?


Hi all,



Disclaimer: I never had a yard before and don't have much experience with it.



It's been just about 2 months a landscaper installed a brand new backyard for us. Not a month after I noticed the Hydrangeas were looking bad, and this week I noticed some dark spots on the lawn. Any of you knows what both issues are?



I have also been seeing what I think are a lot of weeds. I didn't think we would have a problem so early since it's all brand new.



Disclaimer: I never had a yard before and don't have much experience with it.



Are these problems that my landscaper should help me fix since it's so soon after installation?



Photos below show the yard right after being done, and recent shots of problem areas.



Thanks so much



PS: I am in the Bay Area, CA
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Lawn disease?-yard.jpg   Lawn disease?-grass-spot-1.jpg   Lawn disease?-grass-spot-2.jpg   Lawn disease?-hydrangea.jpg   Lawn disease?-weeds.jpg  

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Old 10-11-2016, 02:33 PM   #2
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Re: Lawn disease?


What have you been doing to maintain all of this?

What did the landscaper do? I mean including prep before seeding/sodding.
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Old 10-11-2016, 02:49 PM   #3
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Re: Lawn disease?


Here is some more info.

Watering - The grass is watered daily for 6 minutes, and it's actually growing very fast. The plants are watered every other day for 15 minutes.

Cutting - We were traveling right after installation and the grass was like a meadow after 3 weeks. We had a professional gardener mow with a traditional reel mower. He said for the follow ups he would use a trimmer. The grass looked good after he mowed but I had a disagreement over something else and have to find a new gardener. In the meantime, I cut the grass with a trimmer attached to a base: http://www.blackanddecker.com/produc...t-mower/mtc220


Does it look like a disease on those grass spots?



Thanks again
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Old 10-11-2016, 02:56 PM   #4
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Re: Lawn disease?


Quote:
The grass is watered daily for 6 minutes
Bad idea. Frequent, light waterings encourage shallow root growth. Grass generally needs 1-2" of water per week (rain is included) and is best delivered in one to three waterings. It is also best to water in the morning, as damp grass overnight is more prone to fungus.

At what height are you mowing the grass?
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Old 10-11-2016, 03:07 PM   #5
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Re: Lawn disease?


When I hired this landscaper, which was highly recommended, I request a drought resistant, slow growing lawn. But while I think he installed a drought resistant lawn, I don't think it's slow growing.

The 90/10 one.
http://www.deltabluegrass.com/reside...rcialvarieties



The grass is almost brand new, has only been mowed 3 times. 1 with reel and 2 with trimmer.
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Old 10-11-2016, 03:11 PM   #6
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Re: Lawn disease?


Ok, you should be mowing it down to 2 - 2 1/2" in height, cutting it lower than that is not good for it. Not sure how you're controlling height if you're mowing with a string trimmer.
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Old 10-11-2016, 03:24 PM   #7
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Re: Lawn disease?


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Originally Posted by stick\shift View Post
Ok, you should be mowing it down to 2 - 2 1/2" in height, cutting it lower than that is not good for it. Not sure how you're controlling height if you're mowing with a string trimmer.
the trimmer goes into a base that has 2 heights, 1.6" and 2.4" approximately. I cut on 2.4".
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Old 10-11-2016, 03:51 PM   #8
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Re: Lawn disease?


OK, I like the sound of that.

Do you have any idea how much water you're putting on the lawn each week? If not, put a can or bucket out into the yard the next time the sprinklers are on and measure how much accumulates in the bottom. At your current setting, I don't think it's going to be much at all so I would first change to watering twice a week in the morning for maybe twenty minutes and measure one of those. Once you know how much you're actually applying per unit time, you can adjust to get the 1-2" per week, keeping in mind you wouldn't water at all if you were getting 1-2" of rain per week.

How's that sound to you?
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Old 10-11-2016, 04:53 PM   #9
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Re: Lawn disease?


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Originally Posted by stick\shift View Post
OK, I like the sound of that.

Do you have any idea how much water you're putting on the lawn each week? If not, put a can or bucket out into the yard the next time the sprinklers are on and measure how much accumulates in the bottom. At your current setting, I don't think it's going to be much at all so I would first change to watering twice a week in the morning for maybe twenty minutes and measure one of those. Once you know how much you're actually applying per unit time, you can adjust to get the 1-2" per week, keeping in mind you wouldn't water at all if you were getting 1-2" of rain per week.

How's that sound to you?
I can put a bucket and see how much it accumulates, and I will report back here.

Thanks
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Old 10-11-2016, 09:17 PM   #10
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Re: Lawn disease?


Once the grass has set roots and started growing you don't need to water it every day. Once or twice a week is better for the grass, with an inch of water applied each time. Less frequent watering will encourage deeper roots. Recommendations for grass watering assume no rain, if you are getting regular rain don't add to it with watering.

The spots may be black mold. If you ruff it with your foot, do you see a cloud of dust come up? Black mold looks unappealing but is not harmful, wash it off with a garden hose it you like. It may also be a symptom of letting it grow too high, or excessive watering during humid months.

Hydrangeas are a very fussy species, re fertilizing, pH, etc. There are many fans of Hydrangeas and lots of websites for them on the internet with information on growing them successfully.
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Old 10-12-2016, 06:07 PM   #11
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Re: Lawn disease?


Soil test? Who knows what the pH is....
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Old 01-02-2017, 06:07 AM   #12
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Re: Lawn disease?


I think best idea is "you should hire a landscaper".
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Old 01-02-2017, 06:34 PM   #13
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Re: Lawn disease?


I also think you are over-watering. I know just about nothing about the SF bay area but get the sense that it can be a damp and often foggy environment. That would tend to reduce the need to water even more.

Hydrangeas can be funny plants. Once they are established, you tend to have to beat them back with a shovel. Not an expert but the photo does look like mold which may indicate over-watering as well. As mentioned, there are loads of websites on the species. It also looks a little jammed in close to the wall behind a small tree. Unless it is a dwarf version, once it takes off it may overwhelm that spot. Hopefully, your landscaper took all that into account and knows better than I.
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