Are you having difficulty keeping your yard looking healthy, but encounter dying grass or dead spots? Here are a few solutions to the problem.
Lack of fertilizer: if your grass is not fertilized correctly year round it will not use the water it gets and no amount of watering will cure this. If your yard is made up of a mixture of clay and a small but of topsoil, the topsoil becomes exhausted of nutrients very quickly and needs to be replenished. Try using a turf builder, such as Scotts Turf Builder ($13/bag @ Home Depot) and feed about 1/8th of a bag every 6 weeks. If you want to plant seed, approximately the top two inches of clay soil needs to be aerated (loosened) and/or apply a soil penetrant, then add top soul. Then add seed and cover with top soil. The soil needs to be kept moist until the grass has grown. Sometimes it’s just easier to re-sod problem areas.
Sprinklers: poorly maintained sprinklers may not water all the areas of your lawn correctly. The water pressure can change; try testing your sprinklers and adjust periodically. Your current irrigation system may be 30+ years old. There are new sprinklers that you can buy that can more effectively water you lawn. Or, try the old standby! Use a hose that is attached to a sprinkler and spray the problem areas. Many plants benefit from deep infrequent watering. Try multiple starts per day and water.
Rabbits: Rabbits eat the grass in certain spots and as they eat the grass in that area they also defecate and urinate which acidifies the soil and kills the grass. The rabbits usually come out in the very early morning around 4 am to 6 am. Please check for rabbits destroying your yard. If you find that rabbits are the cause, get some Vitamin B1 transplant fertilizer from Home Depot and spray on your lawn each time after you mow. This will make the grass taste bad to the rabbits. B1 is about $5/gallon and you can use about 3 tablespoons in a gallon of water.
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