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Summer Grass Turned Brown? Here's What to Do


Summer lawns can turn brown without watering

When it Comes to Summer Lawn Care, Timing is Everything.

It’s August. It’s hot. The rains of the past spring are a bittersweet memory.

Unless you have a sprinkler system, your lawn is likely turning brown.

Here are some tips to bring your lawn back to life.

So How can I Keep My Summer Lawn Healthy Now?

With all the rain this spring, lawns got used to all the water. By saying this, I mean the grass plants themselves did not have to grow deep to find moisture, so the roots have stayed pretty shallow, near the surface.  Now it’s hot and dry, and so thirsty lawns are going dormant (not growing and not very green).  It’s harder for the shallow roots to find water,

So how do you make the roots grow deeper?

Summer Grass Treatment: Sometimes Less is More

A problem that makes the entire situation worse, is that lawn care companies are still going out and applying strong fertilizers. This literally burns your lawn. If your lawn has irrigation, that’s fine. But if you don’t, keep an eye on your lawn care company and make sure they’re not using harsh fertilizers. Put a “hold” on your lawn care until rain returns.

We know it’s frustrating to see your summer lawn turn brown. But you’ll do more harm than good if you fertilize now. Look around and you will see extremely brown lawns—this is not what homeowners want for the money they are spending for the service.

In the Designer Landscapes’ 5-Step Lawn Care, July and August usually mean it’s time for Step #3: Grub Control + Fertilizer. But we can only do it if the client has irrigation. We do not want to burn up lawns. 

What About the Lawn Grubs?

But what about the grubs, you say? Treating a dormant lawn for grubs is silly. Grubs will not attack an actively growing lawn. They will find a lush green lawn to eat and destroy.

How Should I Care for New Sod?

 If you’ve got new grass this year, I hope you’ve remembered to water it. If my team at Designer Landscapes installed it, you received instructions about how to care for it. Remember: you need to water it about twice a day to keep it alive and encourage the roots to grow

If you decide to water- your lawn needs at least 1 inch per week.  Once you start – keep at it so you can bring your grass out of dormancy. It should come back after the rain starts coming again but if areas don’t come back- then overseeding may be needed in the fall.

When Should I Water My Lawn?

Avoid watering in the heat of the day. A lot of water will just evaporate on your grass before it has a chance to feed the roots. - Early morning the best time to water your lawn. Early evening is also better than the scorching sun of the hot weather.

 Proper timing is the key to any successful lawn care program. So we wait for mother nature to bring back some rain. When the time is right, our lawn care team will be back out to apply Step 3 lawn care.

For now, think of it as a well-deserved break from weekly mowing. Put up your feet and enjoy the rest of your garden landscape.