I have had my yard established for 3 years now. Every summer I seem to
get dark spots in my yard. The grass actually looks like its drying
out. My wife and I dug to see what was happening only to find out that
these dark areas are basically clay soil. The rest of my yard is
Any suggestions on what to do or should I just tear my yard up?
wapepper at comcast.net
Where abouts do you live?
Did you start the lawn yourself?
Seed, sod, plugs?
Do you know what type of grasses you have?
Full sun, shade, or part shade?
Are you fertilizing and if so what sort of schedule?
What about herbicides and insecticides?
The answers to some of these questions would help greatly.
I'm skeptical of the clay soil theory.
I live in Delaware
Started the lawn myself
Fertilizing using the Scotts program
No herbicides or insecticides
It's the same spots every year.
Peter H wrote:
No need to apologize Allen. The information helps though. I'm not very
familiar w/ tall fescue, other than as a weed grass or as a basic ground
cover for rough terrain here in the Toronto area. I've been out of the
business for a couple of years though and know that they were experimenting
w/ it here for turf.
My first suspicion in your case is that you have a different grass growing
in these spots that recur. I've seen it quite often. When the lawn gets
stressed in the summertime some cultivars survive the drought much better
than others. I believe that tall fescue survives drought very well and
wonder whether you have a different grass type in these areas that suffers
sooner and more severely from the heat. If you dig a bit of the turf out of
the problem area and compare it to some from the areas that are doing well
you may find there are differences.
I seem to recall that tall fescue has some distinguishing features. I
believe it has a white swath through the middle of the blade that looks
something like a "W". Anyway compare the leaves. Look at the budshoot. Some
grasses are rolled in the budshoot and some are folded. Check the area where
the outside leaf breaks away from the stalk of the plant. Is it "hairy" and
does the "collar" run straight across or is it "U" shaped. Check the root
system as well and see if they look the same. My suspicions are that you
will find you have a different grass type growing in the problem areas.
If that is the case you can simply kill it with a non-selecive herbicide and
then replant the areas.
Another thing you might try is taking soil samples from the problem areas
and take soil samples from the rest of your lawn and have both sets of
samples tested independently. Some nurseries will test your soil for free
so you might check into that.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.