Caring for your grass during Houston’s summer can involve responding to too much moisture or too little. In this edition of the Houston Grass Podcast Michael talks about both. He also covers grass supply updates, mowing height, and what to do if you see yellowing of your grass. Call us at 281-431-7441 for answers to your questions and a quote for your project.
Summary of Caring for Your Grass in Houston’s Summer
Good afternoon, everyone! This is Michael, and welcome to the Houston Grass Podcast. We’re now in the last week of May, and it’s starting to get hot here in Houston. We’ve been fortunate to have plenty of rainfall this month, and as a result, the grass is looking better than ever. Mother Nature’s water is always superior to any irrigation, so the current weather conditions have been beneficial for our lawns.
Planting Grass During the Summer
We’re approaching the end of the prime time of year for planting grass, which means we’re entering the dog days when the temperature rises, and the water bill goes up along with it. However, this is still a great time to plant grass. Whether you’re laying down new grass or maintaining your existing lawn, there are a few important tasks you should focus on right now.
Tackling Chinch Bugs
One issue we’re starting to receive phone calls about is chinch bugs. While there are currently no signs of them, they tend to appear during hot and dry periods. Chinch bugs target drought-stressed grass. To prevent their infestation, it’s crucial to ensure your grass receives enough water. If rain is scarce, make sure you provide about an inch of water per week through irrigation. Caring for your grass in Houston’s summer means irrigating enough to keep chinch bugs away.
Fertilization and Gray Leaf Spot
We are at the end of the time to apply fertilizer, specifically Nitro Phos Superturf, the summer blend. It contains coated nitrogen that provides an instant boost to the grass while slowly releasing the remaining nitrogen throughout the summer. This prevents burning the grass with excessive nitrogen during the heat.
You should be watching out for gray leaf spot, which becomes more prevalent in hot and humid conditions, particularly in shaded areas. The initial signs are small brown dots on the grass blades, which eventually lead to the entire blade turning brown and dying. Using Heritage G, especially for Palmetto St. Augustine grass, can effectively control gray leaf spot.
Mowing and Blade Maintenance
Adjusting the mowing height according to the season is an essential part of caring for your grass. As we enter this time of year, you should increase the mowing height to provide shade to the soil and retain moisture. It’s crucial not to stress the grass by cutting off more than one-third of the leaf tissue at a time. Additionally, using a sharp mower blade is vital. A clean cut promotes healthier grass and reduces the risk of diseases. If the cut appears jagged, it’s time to sharpen the blade.
Addressing Yellow Grass
We’ve received numerous calls about yellowing grass that is not associated with brown patch or gray leaf spot. In most cases, this indicates a lack of iron in the grass due to heat stress and excessive rain. Adding Ironite, a specific iron supplement available in granular or liquid form, can help restore the grass’s color. It doesn’t immediately change the yellowing but prevents further discoloration in new growth.
As for our grass supply, we’re experiencing a shortage of fine-bladed Zoysias such as Cavalier and Emerald until next spring. However, we anticipate receiving the Palisade Zoysia, a thicker-bladed variety, in about two weeks. We’re also getting a limited quantity of Bermudagrass, including Tifway 419 and TexTurf 10, which will gradually increase over time. If you’re in need of any of these grass types, reach out to us, and we’ll do our best to accommodate you.
Thanks for Listening to the Houston Grass Podcast
Thank you for tuning in to the Houston Grass Podcast. For more information, visit our website at houstonturfgrass.com. Stay tuned for our next episode in late June or early July. Thanks