After you've let your best friend frolic for a few hours in a big beautiful pile of leaves on your lawn, do yourself a favor and rake or blow those pretty autumn leaves off your lawn. Leaves can suffocate and damage all types of lawns, so get them off of there and onto the mulch pile.
Insect Alert: continue to scout for Fall Armyworms until frost.
October Lawn Tips for Warm-Season Lawns
- Fungicide Point #1: There's been tons of rain over the last week and with the rain and overcast skies, temps are right for fungal outbreaks on warm season lawns. Come by to pick up your fungicide products.
- Fungicide Point #2: Even without the right conditions for an outbreak right now, Zoysia, Bermuda, Centipede, & St. Augustine lawns should get an application of preventative fungicide in October (once soil temps are 70 degrees) to help reduce the possibility of Large Patch appearing in the spring. Remember, an ounce of prevention in the fall is cheaper and easier than curing Large Patch in the spring!
- If you haven't done so already, it's time to apply pre-emergent weed control on all established warm-season lawns. Come by for products!
- Nitrogen is a no-no: Don't be seduced by the ads that use catchy advertising to pitch so-called "winterizer" products which are high in nitrogen. Your warm season lawn is going dormant and doesn't need much fertilizer - in fact, high nitrogen can cause damage due to increased tender growth that is killed during the winter and it can increase fungal problems that show up in the spring. Fall applications should consist of a higher phosphorus and potassium content like 0-7-7 or 5-10-25 or 5-10-30 combo with pre-emergent. Wait until late spring 2016 to use a high nitrogen fertilizer on Zoysia, Bermuda, Centipede, and St. Augustine.
- Do not aerate warm-season lawns in fall; wait until spring.
- Keep mowing your warm-season lawn until it goes dormant. It's best to keep your lawn at regular mow-height for winter, and not let it grow long. On the other hand, do not scalp! Keep it at normal height for your type of lawn.
October Lawn Tips for Tall Fescue Lawns
The pre-emergent vs. post-emergent herbicide topic takes study, thought, and practical experience. If you have further questions about herbicide use on your lawn, please don't hesitate to call us.
- Our Blue Tag Certified Elite Tall Fescue seed is in stock. It's a blend of three types that we hand selected as the best for the South. Read all about it here and keep scrolling to see our package deals!
- Lay Tall Fescue sod now! It's grown with same superior seed blend as above. Request a Free Sod Quote.
- PRE-emergent Herbicide on Fescue: If you are about to plant Fescue seed, omit pre-emerge herbicide. If you have an established Fescue lawn and have no intention whatsoever of overseeding, then it's time to apply a pre-emergent herbicide.
- POST-emergent Herbicide on NEW Fescue: If you planted a brand new Fescue lawn from seed and in the process tilled up the existing soil, you've likely kicked up weed seeds with the tiller and exposed them to light (light is one of the factors that causes seeds to germinate). The seeds are probably now germinating and you're worried about the weeds alongside your Fescue seedlings. Here's a rule of thumb: it's okay to apply a post-emergent herbicide (such as Trimec) labeled for use on Tall Fescue lawns after you've mowed your new lawn three to four times.
- Mowing Tall Fescue Seedlings: The first time to mow your lawn (at a 2.5-3" cut height) is when the seedlings reach 3-4" tall. In fact, mowing will promote growth (both root and shoot growth)! So don't be timid. Mow it.
- Aerating Existing Fescue Lawns using Soil3: Aerating improves established Fescue lawns by increasing air, water, and nutrient availability in the root zone of your lawn. Use a core aerator and for best results spread a 1/4" layer of Soil3 organic compost first, then aerate. Don't aerate a newly sodded Fescue lawn because it's not rooted and it will be torn up in the process.
- Fertilize Existing Fescue Lawns: Stop in to pick up 16-4-8 fertilizer for established Elite Tall Fescue lawns.
- Fertilize when Seeding New Fescue Lawns: We have an 18-24-12 starter formulation in 50 lb. bags.
- Along with fertilization, you may need to apply lime to neutralizes the pH of your soil. Optimal soil pH is critical for your grass to be able to uptake the important nutrients supplied by your fertilizer. Take a soil test to determine if your soil needs lime.
- Continue to mow your Fescue lawn at 2.5" to 3" cutting height.