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Lawn Maintenance

Q.Lawn Burn-out

Zone Perth | Anonymous added on August 5, 2021 | Answered

We have a very small, enclosed back yard which allows a lawn of about 42sq metres. It gets plenty sun and is reticulated, fertilised, Seasol-Ed, mowed regularly. When we moved into the house 15 years ago we concentrated on internal renovation, so started work on the garden 10 years ago. Since then we have laid a lawn THREE times to turf and still no luck.. the lawns have just deteriorated after 3-4 months. Lawn one: professional garden landscaper supplied soil and turf in Spring. Lawn looked terrific till the hot weather arrived in December (we live in Perth). As soon as the days were over 32 the lawn stressed, leaving big patches of brown. We rigged up a system of shade cloth to cover the lawn and this kept it going, just. But not the look we wanted, Lawn Two: chose Zoysia Empire in the belief this suits Perth conditions. New soil, new turf. Same result – even though we increased the watering. There are irregular brown patches of dead grass all over, where the grass is dry and brittle. Weeded regularly. Used fungal treatment. Lawn Three: removed Soil to a depth of half a mètre, Replaced it with recommended soil from turf supplier, relaid the turf ourselves and ran the compactor over it as before. Same result as soon as the warmer weather arrived. Treated for lawn grubs as had noted black beetles. Many black beetles came to the surface, so treatment continued regularly and watering increased again. No more black beetles. Note to self: Could they have been imported in the soil or turf? Same result. Phoned turf supplier who was not interested in being helpful. Went overseas for two and a half months last WA winter. Returned to find lawn full of weeds. Since then the weeds and clover have completely overtaken the lawn, which seems to have disappeared. If I ask my husband to dig this up and plant a fourth lawn I think I will be pushing my luck! Have asked around for recommendations on weed treatment for Zoysia, to no avail. Certainly no help from the turf supplier. We have a smaller area of lawn in the front, planted the same time and with the same soil and turf type as Lawn Two and it is always looking beautiful. Any suggestions (other than artificial turf, which I refuse to have) will be most welcome. My current thoughts are to lay kikuyu, as I don’t think lawn invasion will be a problem. With thanks Meryll

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on August 20, 2021

Unfortunately, it sounds like a fungal infection has taken over the area. Even with treatment, infections will continue if the area remains overly moist for too long without an adequate period to dry out. Treatment will have to occur many times, according to the label on the fungicide of your choice, until the infection subsides. Unfortunately, this will take very rigorous treatment over an entire season, before replacing it. Otherwise, it will continue to kill off anything, but weeds, that grows there.

From here, I would treat, then seek the most native options that you can. Zoysia should be your best bet, but without killing off the infection- It will continue to plague the area.

Here are some articles that will help:





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