What Causes Dollar Spot - Lawn Solutions Australia

Dollar Spot

What causes Dollar Spot?

Dollar Spot is a turf disease effecting many different turf varieties. As its name suggests, the appearance of this disease is usually identifiable as dollar sized spots of discoloured grass appearing within your lawn. Up close, the discoloured leaves will have straw coloured lesions with red/brown edges to them. If left to spread the spots will get larger and form bigger patches of affected grass.

Another identifying feature of Dollar Spot is the web like fine threads that form through the leaves of your lawn on colder mornings. These webs will disappear as the day warms up, but these threads are called mycelium threads and are a product of the fungal pathogen that causes Dollar Spot known as Sclerotinia Homoeocarpa.

What causes Dollar Spot?

Dollar Spot occurs when there is additional moisture present on warmer days and the cool nights of spring and autumn. Excessive amounts of thatch build up, poor drainage and watering your lawn too often are common factors that can result in the spots appearing. Dollar Spot is much more common in turf under intensely managed conditions, so is commonly experienced on golf courses.

  • High humidity
  • Cool nights with heavy dew
  • Low nitrogen levels
  • Dry soil

Treatment

So often with fungal diseases the best remedy is simply good lawn care practices.

  • Regularly fertilising your lawn throughout the year will prevent nitrogen deficiency.
  • Regular mowing will help to reduce thatch build up, which can create an ideal humid environment for the disease to grow.
  • When watering your lawn, be sure to do so in the mornings and afternoons only and only water your lawn when it really needs it. A long deep soaking will be of much better benefit than many short watering’s.

We generally do not recommend treating Dollar Spot with fungicides unless the issue continues to persist after implementing the treatment options above. By treating the cause of the problem, you should be able to get Dollar Spot under control without the use of a fungicide. Some fungicide options you might want to consider however, are Bumper 625 and Chief Aquaflo.

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