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July News From Fairway Green

Book Now For Fall Fescue Seeding Fescue needs to be seeded in September and early October; not the spring.  Tall Fescue in the Transitional Zone faces many challenges during the year that can create turf damage or injury.  This is why it is important to seed your fescue lawn every fall. Diseases can be one… Read more »

Book Now For Fall Fescue Seeding

Fescue needs to be seeded in September and early October; not the spring.  Tall Fescue in the Transitional Zone faces many challenges during the year that can create turf damage or injury.  This is why it is important to seed your fescue lawn every fall. Diseases can be one of the causes of turf damage.  Brown Patch Fungus, Dollar Spot and Pythium can be devastating to fescue.  Extended dry periods along with the heat make for a damaging combination on all turf types. In fact, when the ground temperatures reach the mid 80 degrees to low 90 degrees, cool season grass’s (Fescue and Bluegrass) root system stops developing and will lose root mass that supports plant survival. 

Extended dry periods exacerbate cool season turf decline.  Many people cannot switch to a warm season turf due to shade conditions in the lawn.  All warm season turf types require full sun (not filtered) for at least 8 hours to grow properly and survive.    Fairway Green utilizes its own custom turf-type tall fescue mixture.  Our seed is handpicked for high performing varieties that are Brown Patch resistant, heat/dry tolerant and provide quality color and texture. This special mixture is made for use in our Transitional Zone. Fairway Green’s seed mixture, “Southern Perfection”, has 0% weed and 0% other crop contamination.  Southern Perfection is WaterStar® qualified through the Turfgrass Water Conservation Alliance (TWCA).

Summer Turf Disease Update

Summer is turf disease season for cool season and warm season grasses.  Brown patch fungus on Fescue started in early May this year. We have seen sporadic cases of Pythium and Dollar Spot on warm season turf.   Brown Patch Fungus activity has been high on Fescue at the end of June due to the high humidity and thunderstorms.  It is always better to control diseases preventively vs. curatively.

Brown Patch Fungus in Fescue

Crabgrass and Broadleaf Weeds

It is not uncommon to have some crabgrass germinating in the lawn around the end of July through August.  The pre-emergent applied earlier in the year will start to degrade and break down.  Generally, Crabgrass will germinate in areas with thin turf, along roadways and other hard surfaces and in high spots of the lawn.  Pre-emergent breakdown is especially important in Fescue lawns because seeding needs to take place starting at the end of August to mid-October. Fescue seedlings would not be able to survive with pre-emergent still bonded to the soil particles.

You also may notice an increase in broadleaf weed germination at this time too.  Pre-emergent Crabgrass control also helps control broadleaf weed germination.

Difficult To Control – Nutsedge

Yellow Nutsedge is a prolific and very difficult weed to control in many lawns and natural areas. Nutsedge is not a broadleaf weed or grassy weed but is in the sedge family.  Yellow Nutsedge is a summer perennial that flourishes from April/May to around September/October. It reproduces from tubers under the soil and can spread from rhizomes.  Each plant can produce hundreds of tubers during its growing season.  These new tubers will be new plants in the years to come.  Nutsedge will have a triangle stem and is easily felt when you twirl a stem between your thumb and forefinger. Yellow Nutsedge will grow much faster than the existing turf and will have a thin shiny appearance. Post-emergent broadleaf weed controls for weeds like clover and dandelions will not control Nutsedge.  There are limited products available for controlling Nutsedge and all of them require frequent applications over multiple years to offer acceptable control.  Fairway Green utilizes these products on Round Three and Four turf programs.

Nutsedge in Fescue

Doveweed

Doveweed has become a troublesome weed in many home lawns during the last few years.  It is a summer annual weed, and its seeds germinate during the late spring when soil temperatures reach 65 to 70 °F.  Doveweed leaves are thick, shiny, and up to 4-inches long with parallel veins.  Because of its long, grass-like foliage, Doveweed is often over-looked in St. Augustinegrass or Centipedegrass lawns. Doveweed spreads aggressively within the lawn by thick aboveground, creeping stems, called stolons.

Doveweed thrives in overly moist soils because of poor soil drainage or frequent rainfall and irrigation. In these wet areas, homeowners may not realize this grass-like weed is present until large patches of turfgrass have been smothered out.

In summer, Doveweed produces small, 3-petaled, lavender flowers that, when in bloom, become more noticeable in the lawn.

After flowering, seeds are produced in small, 3/16-inch diameter, green capsules.  Doveweed seed can remain viable for several years on the soil before germinating.

Doveweed Control Program

Fairway Green utilizes a Doveweed Control Program that offers customers some relief from this aggressive weed.  There are two applications of the product called Tower, 30 days apart.  Applications are completed May/June and July August.  Earlier identification and applications can be more effective.  They will see roughly 75% control and will need additional applications the following years.  Remember, it is an annual broadleaf weed and has produced many seeds that are in the soil that will germinate in following years.  The applications will be two times your regular application price.  This is due to the cost of this product.

Doveweed in Bermuda

Chamberbitter

It is a summer broadleaf weed called Chamberbitter.  In fact, one of its nicknames is Little Mimosa weed.  It is a broadleaf weed that is thought to have been introduced from Florida from pine straw about 15 year ago.  It is a prolific seeder and has done well moving around the Triangle from straw and other means.  It typically germinates in mid to late summer and usually appears around pine straw and birdfeeders first.  It will grow straight up like a tree until mowed. Chamber Bitter spreads by seed.  Seed pods are under and along the leaf branches and contain hundreds of seeds per plant.

It is a difficult broadleaf weed to control with the available broadleaf weed control products.  We identify our customers that have this broadleaf weed and try to make multiple weed control applications to gain some control on spreading. 

Chamberbitter

Why Is My Fescue Lawn Not As Green Right Now?

Heat/dry stress is often misdiagnosed as a fungus or other issue.  Signs of dry/heat stress include: a darker color to the lawn, visible footprints, and a leaf blade that is folded and thin looking. The grass blade appears to be almost straw like on all types of turf, including Bermuda and Zoysia. If the lawn looks ok in the morning then looks poor in late afternoon, it is probably heat/dry stress. Tall Fescue will usually go into a semi-dormant state and shut down.  Most of the turf will bounce back with cooler temperatures and rain fall.  It is important for the fescue to be healthy from proper fertility and a 3.5” to 4.0 mowing height before, during and after the semi-dormant state.  We have about two more months of these climatic conditions.  

Many people are under the impression that Warm season turf lawns like Bermuda and Zoysia cannot experience heat/dry related injury/stress during summer.  However, warm season turf grasses are just more heat/dry tolerant than warm season turf. They generally recover from these stresses better than a cool season turf.  Warm season and cool season turf stress is exacerbated when the turf is growing in poor conditions (i.e. shade, compact soil, etc.) and/or struggling to recover from a harsh Transitional Zone winter.  Like Tall Fescue, most of the turf will bounce back if the turf was in good health.

Warm season turf is heat/dry tolerant but not exempt from experiencing the same conditions as cool season turf like Fescue during hot dry weather. Tolerance means it can tolerate those type of conditions longer and have the ability to generally recover faster.

Aphids Have Been Problematic On Crepe Myrtles

Aphids are soft-bodied insects that use their piercing sucking mouthparts to feed on plant sap. They usually occur in colonies on the undersides of tender terminal growth. Heavily-infested leaves can wilt or turn yellow because of excessive sap removal. While the plant may look bad, aphid feeding generally will not seriously harm healthy, established trees and shrubs. 

Aphids produce large amounts of a sticky liquid waste called “honeydew”. A fungus called sooty mold can grow on honeydew deposits that accumulate on leaves and branches, turning them black. The appearance of sooty mold on plants may be the first time that an aphid infestation is noticed. The drops can attract other insects such as ants that will feed on the sticky deposits. Specialized insect control applications can help reduce populations.

Aphids on Crepe Myrtle

Fairway Green Mosquito Control Program

Fairway Green Mosquito Control Program has been very successful.  We are receiving praise from customers that feel they can be in their yards during the summer again.

Safely enjoy the outdoors this summer by controlling disease-ridden mosquitos at home

We all know Mosquitos transmit diseases like West Nile Virus, Encephalitis, Chikungumya and Zika! 

Fairway Green’s Mosquito Control program can help control Mosquitos giving you and your family peace of mind.

Receive $10.00 off your first application.  *New Mosquito Control customers only; cannot be combined w/other offers.