If you're like most homeowners, you take pleasure in the appearance of your outdoor living space as well as appreciate its functionality. For instance, few things make a better play surface or feel better beneath bare feet than a soft, velvety green lawn, and it's also more than easy on the eyes. Unfortunately, however, fungal pathogens also find green lawns appealing, and if left unchecked, they can wreak significant havoc on even the healthiest lawn, destroying lawn grasses at the root level. Fortunately, strategies exist designed to keep fungal pathogens from taking over your lawn. The following are four of them.
Overwatering is probably the biggest culprit when it comes to putting out the welcome mat for errant fungal pathogens. Except in times of severe drought, the average lawn requires about an inch of water per week, which should take about an hour using a regular sprinkler system. Programmable sprinkler systems can prevent overwatering, but if you do operate the old-school way, place an empty tuna can in the area being watered — when it's full, you've watered enough for the week.
Water Early in the Day
Busy homeowners often put off watering their lawns until they've completed their other household chores for the day, but this approach is almost guaranteed to open the door for fungal pestilence. Fungus thrives in damp, dank conditions, and the cover of darkness hinders the evaporation process that dries things out during the day, and dew that develops toward dawn brings even more dampness to the picture.
Keep Yards Free of Debris
Yard debris such as piles of unraked leaves in autumn and other vegetative waste provides a prime environment for the development of potentially harmful fungal colonies. Under every pile of leaves and debris is a damp, dank environment that's ideal for the development of fungal colonies. Keeping your lawn clear of this debris is half the battle when waging war on fungus.
Provide Proper Drainage
No yard has a perfectly flat surface, so be sure to inspect your yard after major precipitation events to identify low-lying areas where water tends to pool. Installing French drains in these areas helps divert excess water away from them, consequently decreasing the chances of fungal pathogen populations reaching destructive levels.
Keeping a lawn looking as good as it feels on the bare soles of your feet can be challenging even when conditions are ideal, particularly for homeowners with schedules crammed with work and family obligations. Hiring a professional lawn maintenance service helps ensure that your lawn receives the best possible care and attention.