Unwelcome Post-Winter Surprises That May Be Lurking on Your Lawn
Spring Lawn Damage in Champaign, IL
After the harsh winter season, many homeowners understandably cannot wait for the return of spring weather. When the snow finally melts, some homeowners are disappointed to see a brown and often damaged lawn. Most of the time lawns can bounce back with the return of warmer temperatures, sun and precipitation. However, if your lawn doesn’t green up on its own, that is a good indication that something is wrong. There are several things that happen over the winter that can affect the health of your spring turf; below are some of the most common.
Snow Mold is a fungal lawn disease that appears in the spring, typically presenting patches of light yellow or grayish-brown turf. After the snow melts away, matted down areas of grass will have a web-like fungal growth in circular patches coating the grass blades. If you notice this on your lawn, these areas should be raked immediately to help lift matted grass and help return oxygen to the roots. These areas should also be fertilized and if they don’t bounce back, reseeding may be necessary.
If you notice animals digging up your lawn and patches of grass overturned, this is a good indication that you are dealing with a spring grub problem. These white c-shaped insects awaken from their winter slumber and feed on grassroots which can quickly destroy a lawn. If you notice this type of damage, it is important to act fast. Contact your local Weed Man to schedule a grub control application immediately.
As the snow melts away, many homeowners find evidence of winter kill. Winter kill occurs as a result of harsh winter weather conditions. If you notice some areas of your lawn aren’t greening up with the rest of your turf, the roots may be damaged, making it difficult to absord water and nutrients. If plant death occurs and your turf is not responding to water or fertilization, reseeding should be considered. Establishing new grass will help fill in any bare areas leftover from the winter, making your turf thicker, strong and more resillient to weeds and disease.
House pets – especially dogs – tend to be the culprit for damage in your spring lawn. While our pets love to play in the backyard, during the winter and even in the spring when our turf is excessively damp, any foot (or paw) traffic can easily cause damage. It is also common for homeowners to notice dog spot in their spring lawn. If your pet is consistently using the same spots to go to the bathroom, these areas of turf can become damaged, appearing yellow and straw-like. Homeowners should water and fertilize these areas to help them recover.
Snow and Salt Removal Damage
If you notice the damage on your spring lawn borders the road, your driveway or sidewalk, your lawn has likely suffered salt and snow removal damage. Salt, which is commonly used to melt ice, can transfer onto your turf and burn the grass. When shoveling and plowing snow, it’s common for accidental damage to occur. It is recommended that homeowners mark the edges of their lawn prior to winter to avoid causing damage like this.
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