Notable Common Lawn Diseases

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Lawn diseases can sometimes sneak in, making your yard unattractive.

If they don’t get treated, diseases such as Red Thread or Powdery Mildew and Rust Fucus could continue to appear year after year.

After seeing Red Thread spread, you might be ready to give up on your lawn. However, there are still ways to keep it healthy!

Find the Cause

Red Thread is a deadly disease that can only be eradicated if you know the causes. It usually appears from late spring to early summer. This disease loves humidity and will often settle in areas with low levels of Nitrogen.

The Fall is the best time to fertilize, as it is before the Winter brings an end to lawn growth. Due to the rapid growth, the majority of nutrients that were added to the soil are gone by Spring.

Because of the rapid growth in spring, most of the Nitrogen has been consumed. This provides the ideal environment for Red Thread to flourish.

Identifying the Red Thread

It is difficult to identify lawn diseases such as Red Thread, Snow Mold and Pink Patch because of the similarities. These diseases often appear as pink clusters that look like cotton candy.

These pink clusters can be found in many fungal diseases. It is difficult to know the right treatment. Red Thread is named for the reddish, twisted fibers that attach to the grass blades. These fibers have a branch structure that is a sign you’re dealing with Red Thread.


Red Thread is most likely to affect the soil and thatch layers. The disease does not affect the roots and crown of grass plants, which can be cured by the use of fungicides. It is not recommended that you use fungicides to treat this mainly cosmetic disease.

Red Thread can be treated by applying fertilizer twice per year, once in Fall and once again in Spring. This will replenish the nutrients that were lost in the Winter and Spring. This will supply the required amount of Nitrogen to fight this disease. It may take two years to completely remove the disease from your lawn.

Here are five more steps to remove red thread

  1. You should maintain a balanced fertility program. Do not over- or underestimate the importance of fertilizing. To ensure your soil has the correct nutrients, complete soil testing.
  2. After each use, clean your mower, shoes, or other lawn maintenance equipment. Transferring red thread onto other objects can lead to spreading of the disease.
  3. As much as possible, let the grass dry out before it gets dark. The grass will stay damp overnight if it is not watered in the evening or late afternoon. This excessive moisture encourages fungal growth.
  4. Get rid of excess thatch. Red Thread is found primarily in soil and thatch layers. It is important to remove some thatch.
  5. If the disease is present, make sure you remove grass clippings from your lawn after it has been mowed. They can add to the thatch layer as well as increase moisture levels and encourage disease growth.

It can be exhausting to completely remove Red Thread from your lawn. However, it is essential.The fungus can weaken the grass and turn it brown. It can also cause a loss of lawn appearance due to the fuzzy pink clusters and thin red fibers. This disease can be eradicated to give you the lawn that you have always desired.

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