Factors, such as adverse weather conditions, cultural practices, or pest incidence can often lessen the quality of our lawns. Proper diagnosis is critical in identifying lawn problems and determining what corrective steps need to be taken.
Not every problem can be easily determined and solved in the field, but with a few helpful tools and having the right information, we can go a long way in narrowing the possibilities.
Tips that will help determine and correct many of the problems include the following:
1) Become familiar with the turf species you are growing and what their cultural requirements are.
2) Learn how to look for symptoms and signs of problems.
3) Keep a history of the lawn to track problems. Some problems, such as crabgrass invasion, white grub damage, and some turf diseases can be annual occurrences.
4) Some pests, or the damage they cause, can be difficult to see without the aid of good diagnostic tools such as a magnifying glass, pH meter, etc.
5) Obtain reference materials that are helpful in confirming the identity of a particular pest.
6) In some cases, it may be necessary to send a sample to a diagnostic laboratory for analysis.
7) Become familiar with the remedies at your disposal such as pesticides, fertilizers, etc.
Published January 9, 2012
Dr. Wayne Wells is an Extension Professor and Turfgrass Specialist. His mailing address is Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, Mail Stop 9555, Mississippi State, MS 39762. firstname.lastname@example.org