Most turf grass is composed of up to 75% water, which tells you the importance of moisture in maintaining a healthy lawn. If the grass plant loses more water through the leaf blade than the root system can take up, the lawn will become stressed.

Drought Symptoms

When a lawn becomes drought stressed, the leaf blades turn from a bright, healthy green to a dull grey color. Also, lawn mower tracks and foot traffic leave marks for a longer period of time. This is due to the plant bending over and not having the energy to recover to an upright position. As stress continues, the lawn will change from a dull grey or bluish color to more of a yellowish and finally a tan color. Tan is a clear sign the lawn is in drought dormancy.

Drought Damage

Although a weekly mowing schedule is recommended for a healthy lawn, it is not recommended for a lawn in drought stress. Because of the low moisture content in the leaf blade, mowing or foot traffic can cause the cellular structure to collapse. Broadleaf weeds love a lawn in drought stress, as they are more tolerant of low moisture conditions and create an opportunity for the weeds to gain a better foothold.

Drought Stress Solutions

There is no miracle cure for a drought-stressed lawn, other than moisture, moisture, and more moisture. Water once every seven days with approximately one-inch of water. If the signs of drought are persistent, do not mow during the hot weather.

For more information, call the professionals at Ace of Blades at 818-LAWN (818-5296),
or e-mail us at paul@aceofblades.ca.