Expert Advice

Summer Patch

Problem

The symptoms of summer patch usually occur July to August and appear in circular patches or rings. Frequent irrigation in the fall and spring will inhibit root development and increase the severity of summer patch. Deep and infrequent watering will encourage the development of a deep, dense root system that is able to better withstand fungal attack.

Solution

Reduce thatch buildup and relieve soil compaction through aeration, mowing, and topdressing. Frequent aeration is especially important in high traffic areas where the disease is most severe. When summer patch symptoms appear, increase mowing height (at least 3”) and the frequency of irrigation to twice a week (ensure to water deeply, 3/4” - 1”) during dry periods to reduce heat stress. Avoiding nitrogen deficiency is also important. In addition, increase fertilizer applications to minimize stress and compensate for damage to the root system.