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Lawn Pests: Weeds, Insects, Diseases & Thatch
WEEDS:   
      A lawns best defense against broad-leaf and grassy weeds is a thick stand of turf.  Because thick turf will  minimize  light to the soil surface, weed seed  germination is significantly reduced.
     Our ENVIRONCAREsm techniques, in fertilization, encourage 
vigorous top growth, root growth and rhizome activity. Minor weed populations are spot treated, instead of unnecessarily saturating the entire lawn. Weed-grass (crabgrass) prevention is done in early spring thereby preventing them from sprouting. 

INSECTS:
     Your Turf Lab program includes the control of surface and sub -surface insects that, quite frequently, interfere with the natural growth and development of your lawn. Surface insect activity is identified and spot treated in and around those areas affected before a broader problem can get started. 
     Sub-surface insects, such as white grub larvae, are notorious for causing severe damage to lawns in our region. This is why your Turf Lab ENVIRONCAREsm program includes the timely application of a highly effective white grub control as a preventative, virtually eliminating this problem and protecting your landscape investment.

DISEASES:
      Most turfgrass diseases are caused by parasitic organisms called fungi. These are very elemental forms of life incapable of producing their own food. Obtaining nourishment from other sources, parasitic fungi rely on living hosts, such as grass plants.  Variables such as grass variety, temperature range, moisture level, humidity and especially nitrogen levels in the soil and the leaf tissue all contribute to the occurrence of most turfgrass diseases. Turf Lab's individualized fertilization program plays a vital role in significantly reducing fungus activity. An ENVIRONCAREsm exclusive.

Brown Patch Disease
White Grub Larvae
THATCH:
     Thatch: a loose intermingled layer of dead & living shoots, stems & roots that developes between the zone of green vegetation & the soil surface.
     It would be great if we could just fertilize our lawns without having to worry about things like; insects, diseases, proper watering/mowing & cultural practices like de-thatching or lawn aeration. Unfortunately these are all integral components of a process called "Turf Management".

Causes of Thatch; A thatch layer developes when the accumulation rate of dead organic matter from the actively growing turf exceeds the rate of decomposition. Any cultural or environmental factor that stimulates excessive shoot growth or impairs the decomposition process increases the thatch accumulation rate!
  • ​Improper mowing (too short). The soil will dry out sooner. This increases soil temps & retards normal growth.
  • Poorly drained soils (compacted soils). The process of decomposition is largely dependent on moisture.

Problems Associated with Thatch;
  •  Increased incidence of fungus germination, insect activity (surface & sub-surface) & grassy weeds (crabgrass); Pre-Emergent Crabgrass control & Merit White Grub Control (systemic treatments) can get "tied up" within the thatch layer & significantly reduce control.
  • Localized dry spots; a thatched turf becomes hydrophobic when it dries out & does not permit water to reach the all important root zone.
  • A considerable portion of the root system tends to grow within the thatch layer further reducing heat & drought tolerance.




Excessive Thatch Layer
What Can You Do?  All lawns will develop a menacing thatch layer over time.  In order to achieve optimum results, all of these practices should be observed. Of the four (4) major   procedures: proper mowing, irrigation, fertility/pesticide treatments & lawn aeration , Turf Lab has the least control over the end result. Turf Lab and You as the customer, along with "Mother Nature", are integral components of a process called "Turf Management". The key to success is working together!
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