Brown Patch is Especially Bad This Summer in Louisiana

August 28, 2017By

Brown Patch might not sound like a very technical name for those – well – brown patches in your lawn. But brown patch is a serious lawn disease here in south Louisiana & Mississippi, so let’s take a look at what you can do to try to keep it at bay and what your options are for professional help when DIY lawn control fails.

Brown patch is caused by a fungus called Rhizoctonia solani and is usually seen the most in spring, then from late summer to early fall. While it’s an issue that can arise any year, this year we’re seeing brown patch everywhere.

If untreated, this fungus can make your lawn look discolored and patchy next year too.

What’s causing brown patch outbreaks?

There was an abundant amount of rain this summer, which can actually have an adverse effect on grass.

Grass needs to be able to dry out completely, regularly, in order to stay healthy. With so much water this year, nutrients and fertilizers are washed away, which leaves your lawn malnourished and weak. Add heat to the mix and your lawn will start to die off earlier than usual.

Weakened grass that’s starting to die is the perfect place for brown patch fungus to infest. Once it has established a food source (your dying grass), it will spread rapidly through your lawn and other plants.

Your lawn still needs maintenance as summer fades

This might seem surprising. Most people think of that perfect green summer barbeque lawn when they worry about lawn care.

But you can’t just wait for your grass to die or hibernate for the winter and then expect to have a great looking lawn next summer.

If you have brown patch now, it will come back.

Spotting Real “Brown Patch”

Your grass will usually turn brown or gray, in irregular patches that are often circular, but not always. Patches range in size, from just a few inches in diameter to several feet.

Brown patch spreads quickly to the rest of your lawn, and the dying spots also attack leaves of any other plants that grow in your lawn. You’ll see leaves and grass starting to turn yellow, red, orange, or purple depending on your lawn.

Grass Type Matters

Most warm-season grass that you would find in the average Louisiana yard can be affected by brown patch. That includes St. Augustine, centipede, Bermuda, and Zoysia lawns.

At this time of year, these annual grasses are already at the stage of naturally dying off as they prepare for winter. Combined with the wet growing conditions, grass is dying at a much faster rate than normal.

This provides the perfect environment for brown patch, which can linger through winter.

DIY Treatments for Brown Patch

You can fight brown patch on your own, but it’s a time consuming process.

Adding a nitrogen-heavy fertilizer to your lawn can work in some cases where grass has less nutrients because of heavy rainfall. You will still want to combine fertilizer with a fungicide to attack the cause of brown patch.

When using a fungicide, you’ll need to time it so that the product isn’t washed away by the rain, and reapply often as additional rain washes away both fertilizers and fungicides.

Any type of systemic fungicide for grass at a local garden center works for mild cases of brown patch.

Call Fischer for Professional Lawn Maintenance

If you aren’t having luck with DIY fungicide, we have more than six decades of experience in lawn care.

Let us help you get your beautiful lawn back! Save time and take your weekends back while we do the work. Keep your lawn beautiful and prevent extra expenses thanks to preventative measures that stop brown patch and other harmful fungi before they start.

We’ll take care of all the maintenance so that you can simply enjoy your lawn all year long.

Contact us online, or chat with us live, to get started. You can also give us a call at 800-391-2565.

Filed in: Lawn Care