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What Causes Brown Spots In My Lawn

What Happened To My Lawn Brown Patches Common Causes And What To Do About Them

What causes Brown Spots in the Summer? | Lawn Fungus Control

The dreaded brown patch. No lawn is immune. From lawns receiving minimal care to those that are perfectly tended by their owners, patches of dead or dying grass can appear seemingly overnight. Why? What causes these brown spots?

We get this question a lot! Here are some answers.

Watering too Little Underwatering and overwatering are both probable causes for brown or dying grass. Underwatering creates drought-like conditions when there isnt enough rain to keep roots alive, and causes grass to die off. Yes, grass naturally goes dormant after a few weeks without water, and most lawns can tolerate drought conditions for a short time . However, extended periods of hot dry conditions like we can see here in late summer may kill a lawn.

Too much water can also be a problem. Daily watering can lead to overly saturated soil if sprinklers are left on too long. Overwatering like this will suffocate the grass and stunt root growth. Conversely, frequent shallow irrigation can also result in a weak root system that is susceptible to drought and disease.


Ideally, lawns should be watered deeply averaging 1 to 1 ½ of water a week depending on the temperatures.

Poor Irrigation CoverageBrown patches can also be caused when an irrigation system isnt properly adjusted to account for the different zones within a lawn. Poor irrigation coverage can lead to some spots being overwatered, green, and soggy while leaving other spots to dry out and go dormant.

Prevent Brown Patch Pythium Blight & Dollar Spot Contact Ryan Lawn & Tree

If youre worried about losing your lawn permanently as you watch it turn brown, piece by piece, consider contacting the Pros at Ryan Lawn & Tree for a free inspection and quote. Ryan Lawn & Tree goes the extra mile to find and utilize only the best products that arent sold in big box stores. Why? Because they work better to control disease and save your beautiful lawn!

RYAN Pros study the latest university research to make sure they are using the best products at the best rate and times to achieve the best results for your lawn. Our educated, experienced lawn care experts will examine your brown patches and determine the cause, then give you a no-obligation quote for providing the appropriate preventive fungicide program. Get a Free Estimate or just a quick phone call to 855.216.2293 will get you started! Contact us today!

Why Are There Dead Or Brown Spots In My Lawn Tips For Pennsylvania Homeowners

Brown or dead spots in your lawn can be a huge source of frustration. Theyre not only a terrible eyesore but may make you feel as though youre losing control of your property.


Depending on the cause, brown or dying spots on your lawn can spread quickly, making your entire lawn look its worst in little to no time at all. Suddenly, your yard is looking like one of the most poorly-maintained properties on the block.You may be wanting to take control of the situation, but you may not be sure how. You ought to be able to have a nice lawn year round, but you may not be sure whats wrong with it or how to go about fixing it. Thats why you want to know what you can do about dead spots in the lawn before they get any worse.

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Can Grass Recover From Brown Patch

The good news is that your turf can recover from brown patch. The bad news? You may have to wait until the active growing season to see an improvement in appearance. While a fungicide application can help prevent spread to other areas, spots that have rotted will need to regrow.

Easy Fix For Dry Spots In Your Lawn

How Do I Fix Brown Spots On My Lawn

What Causes Brown Patches on Lawns?

There are two approaches you can take to dealing with Pythium Blight: a more natural, cultural control, or one that involves chemicals. Using the former first and the latter as a last resort tends to be the best thing to do for the other plants in your yard.


Cultural Control involves making changes to the environment where your lawn is growing, in order to minimize or completely eliminate the factors that cause the mold to form, spread and thrive.

Areas of importance are air circulation, a balance in soil fertility and adequate drainage, especially when the weather is hot and humid. Taking the following steps will cultivate an environment that wont hinder your lawn, but will stop mold growth:

Chemical Control, as the name suggests, requires the use of stronger fungicides in order to conquer Pythium Blight this should be avoided where possible, but if your problem is severe, it might be your only option bar ripping up the whole lawn.

When youre expecting a bout of hot, humid weather, applying fungicide as soon as you start to notice those brown patches appearing is crucial: waiting too long can result in the problem spreading further.

You can also apply some preventative fungicide if you tend to experience gratuitous Pythium Blight, as this can stop it from appearing altogether. Be sure to read the directions carefully and only apply as much of it as you need, and only where it is required.


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What Does Brown Patch In Grass Look Like

They are likely to be roughly circular, though a bit irregular. If brown patch has been active for a while, the spots might look like patches of good grass with rings of dead or dying grass around the edges. They can also be found on sidewalks and in parking lots. Brown patches may also appear on trees and shrubs, especially in the spring and early summer.

What Causes Brown Spots In My Lawn

There are a variety of reasons your lawn may develop Brown patch, including high heat and humidity, excessive nitrogen, moisture, poor soil damage, too much thatch, and compacted soil. In some cases, you cant prevent your lawn from developing Brown thatchafter all, you cant control the weather.

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Causes Of Brown Patch

Brown spots shouldnt ruin your chance at having the lawn you want. In order to identify whats at play on your turf and figure out the best plan of attack for treating any discolored areas on the lawn, you must first pinpoint what could be causing the issue. Take a look at the top three culprits behind brown spots below:


1. Turf Disease

There is a long list of turf diseases that can turn an otherwise green lawn off color. These diseases are caused by fungi that live in the thatch and soil, often activated by high moisture, humidity, or mowing the lawn when it is wet. Brown patch, dollar spot, leaf blight, and necrotic ring can all cause areas of the lawn to turn brown. Although these diseases may sound serious, the majority will disappear on their own with improved environmental conditions. In some cases, an application of fungicide may be required. If you arent sure if turf disease is affecting your lawn, its best to contact your Weed Man team for verification. We will provide you with a proper diagnosis and advise you on next steps.

2. Shade

3. Insect Damage

Grubs Or Other Pests Below The Turf

What’s Causing the Brown Spots in Your Lawn?

Grubs are the larvae of various hard-shelled beetles, such as the Japanese beetle or June bug. A lawn can tolerate some degree of grub infestation, but if the concentration is high, dead patches will appear in your lawn. A strong sign that you are dealing with grubs is if the dead patch lifts away from the ground easily when you tug on the grass. Grubs eat the roots of grass and leave nothing to hold the grass in place. Addressing this problem involves reseeding or resodding and preferably after you have dealt with the grub infestation.

The Spruce / K. Dave

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Why Is My Lawn Brown Some Symptoms To Look For

Getting to the bottom of your lawn problems all starts with a little bit of sleuthing. The truth is, dead spots in the lawn can be caused by quite a few different culprits and determining which one is at fault isnt exactly easy.


It can help to look for specific symptoms to clue you into what might be causing the brown or dead spots on your lawn. Here are some things that you might notice as you dig deeper into your Pennsylvania lawn problem. Well get into more detail about the causes of these symptoms later in this article.

  • Distinct patterns
  • Grass changing color from green to yellowish or brown
  • An influx of animals like moles, skunks, and birds visiting your yard
  • Lawn that is peeling up or can be rolled like a carpet
  • Grass that gets matted down when you walk on it

Whats Causing Brown Spots In My Lawn

Noticing an excess of ugly, dead brown spots on your grass? Visit FitTurf.com to learn what causes these brown spots and how to treat brown spots in your lawn.

Whats Causing Brown Spots in My Lawn?

Cold-weather region inhabitants are used to brown lawns during the dormant months of late winter and early spring. It is quite another thing to notice brown spots in summer when the other areas of the yard are thriving. Identifying what is causing these annoying spots can be half the battle.

What Causes Brown Spots on Lawns?


Brown spots are not unique. In fact, they affect all types of cool-season grasses, including Kentucky bluegrass, rye, fine and tall fescue all common grasses in Metro-Denver and Metro-Detroit areas. These spots can be caused by several factors, including grubs, fungal problems, dog urine and overgrown thatch. Not sure what is bringing on the brown in your yard? Read on or contact Fit Turf to schedule a free consultation.

Brown Spots Caused by Fungus

Could I Have Grubs?

Dog Urine Burns

Overgrown Thatch

Still unsure about what exactly is causing the brown spots in your yard? The experts at Fit Turf can help. Weve seen it all, and we can quickly and easily diagnose your brown spot burdens. Contact us today for an evaluation, and get your yard back on track and on color.

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Erosion And Sloped Properties

Extreme weather or steeply graded landscapes can pose a unique challenge to lawns, especially around the edges of your property. Rain and wind can slowly cause your soil and grass to erode over time, uprooting your grass and leading to brown or yellow patches of dead grass.

Addressing Sloped Lawns

Maintaining the right balance of moisture in your soil can provide the strength it needs to fight against the pull of erosion. Aerate your lawn more frequently to ensure that water is property reaching deep into the soil to strengthen its roots.

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Mowing Problems May Cause Brown Spots

Carys Corner  Brown Patch Disease Alert  Classic Lawns

What causes brown spots on my lawn? One major reason is improper mowing. The blades of your lawnmower should be sharp and new. But if they are dull or rusted, theyll cut your grass unevenly. This will damage the grass and cause brown spots. Another reason is scalping. If your blades are not sharp enough, you can scalp your grass. This means that youll cut the grass so short that the grass will wilt and die. The dead grass will cause brown spots on your lawn.

It is very important to sharpen your blades in spring and fall. It is best to do this with a blade sharpener or an electric grinder. If you dont, you may end up with a lawn that has brown spots. If you are having a problem with brown spots on your lawn, it could be caused by the mower blades that you are using.

Now we know improper mowing is what causes brown spots on my lawn? What should I do? To avoid these problems, you can sharpen your blades after each use. It is recommended to do this two or three times during the summer and one time during the winter.

You should also change your blades after they are worn out and shred your grass. If you keep mowing the grass with blades that are too dull, your grass will become too short. This will cause your grass to die and create brown spots on your lawn. If your mower blades are too sharp, you could cause damage to your lawn. Also, your lawn could be scalded if you cut it too short.

What Causes Brown Spots on My Lawn- mowing challenges

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How To Identify Brown Spots In Grass

You can identify brown spots on the grass by observing yellowish-brown irregular circular patches in your lawn, surrounded by a smoke ring border.

Brown patches may appear as early as spring green-up. Sunken, circular patches of dead, tan grass appear, measuring up to 3 feet in diameter. The patches expand up to 20 feet wide, ringed with smoky, grayish margins of wilted, dark, dying grass.

When To Get Rid Of Brown Patch Fungus

Begin your efforts at brown patch control in the spring, with aeration and dethatching. Application of fungicide should be done when the fungal patches appear, usually mid to late summer, Reseeding with different grass species, where necessary, can be done by over-seeding over several fall seasons, or, if you want quicker results, eliminate the old turf grasses in spring and reseed immediately.

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Spilled Chemicals Or Gasoline

Spilled pesticides or broad-spectrum herbicides such as glyphosate will often cause dead spots in the lawn. Even if you have an appropriate weed killer, its concentration may be just a little too high for your lawn and can kill turf grasses. Chemical spills will often create an irregularly shaped dead patch that matches the shape of the spill. Water the spot thoroughly if you accidentally spill. Take extra care when you have strong chemicals near your grass, and be very careful about preventing a spill. It’s best to prevent a problem than to try to fix it.

Can Brown Grass Turn Green Again

What Are The Brown Spots In My Yard

Absolutely. Grass is an amazing plant that can recover from all sorts of problems. Lawns may suffer from fungal, thatch, nutritional, compaction, and watering issues but as long as it hasnt completely died and you can still see some green shoots here and there, it will almost certainly recover in time. Do what you can to help it recover but in the end, just be patient and allow nature to take its course and you will have beautiful green turf once again.

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What Happened To My Lawn Brown Patches

Youll need to double-check the lawn to see if the problem is actually a fungus or something else, such as improper watering. If there are dead spots in the grass, inspect the grass adjacent to the dead zone to identify the problem. Its important not to look so much at the dead leaves, but at the dying leaves, says Diller.

. With mushrooms, the morning dew clings to it so its easier to see. It looks like a spiders web.

What the lawn is telling you: Growing grass in the shade is extremely difficult and in some cases impossible. Large trees can block the sun, while pines dropping needles around the trunk can kill grass.

Trying to maintain healthy grass under a tree can be an ongoing challenge. You will have to prune the branches to let the sun shine through or constantly rake the pine needles. Even then, the grass may not grow. And large tree roots can render the area under the tree incurable.

What Causes Brown Spots In Grass

There are a variety of reasons your lawn may develop Brown patch, including high heat and humidity, excessive nitrogen, moisture, poor soil damage, too much thatch, and compacted soil. In some cases, you cant prevent your lawn from developing Brown thatchafter all, you cant control the weather.

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Possible Reasons For Brown Spots In The Lawn

As we mentioned, the potential reasons for having brown spots can be quite vast. While we wont dive into detail on each one, we want to at least share some of the possible reasons why your lawn could be dealing with brown spots. We have a lot of articles already written on many of these topics if you want to read more.

  • Lawn Fungus: As we mentioned before, lawn fungus can definitely cause brown spots on the grass. In fact, a disease called Brown Patch causes brown spots . But we have other common diseases in our region including Rust or Red Thread and Dollar Spot, which can also do this.
  • Mowing the Lawn Too Short: Homeowners are often surprised just how much impact tasks like mowing the lawn can impact their lawn care results. But mowing the lawn too short can put a lot of stress on it and actually cause it to thin out and potentially die. We recommend a mowing height of at least 3.5 inches.
  • Armyworms: A sudden influx of Armyworms was an unprecedented event in the Fall of 2021 , and we had a number of customers calling about brown spots in the lawn due to armyworm damage. We cant be sure what kind of damage these pests might cause in the future but this was a rare instance when these caterpillars literally blew in from storms in the South, in the form of moths.


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