New guy here, need help with my lawn.


Old 05-09-13, 02:03 PM
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New guy here, need help with my lawn.

Hello everyone, i recently purchased a home and the lawn looked in decent/good condition but lately ive noticed a couple brown spots and the grass doesn't look consistent or full anymore. i have very little experience and knowledge about lawns, i tried researching but cant find anything, dont know if it needs more or less water .. fertilizer, or bug treatment.... so here i am asking for some help and tips hoping someone can point me in the right direction so i can keep having a decent looking lawn.

i moved into the house about 2 months ago and i try mowing once a week, sprinklers are on 7 mins in the morning and 7 mins in the afternoon. dont know what type of grass i have, i live in southern California, weather has been around 60-70 for the past weeks one or two days in the 80s maybe.

Only thing i i can think of that might be affecting my lawn is that in the 2 and a half years of owning my mower i havent sharpen the blade once. could that be a big factor? also a have a dog (labrador) but he never goes in the front lawn.

what i got going for me is that i actually like doing yardwork, and at the moment i have a homedepot gift card with 200 dollars in it in case i need to buy some products

well i tried describing my lawn and details the best i could. i havent had much luck with my previous lawn but im determined to keep this one looking as good as i can so any help is greatly greatly appreciated

here are some pictures taken yesterday, havent mowed this week yet.

overall look of the front yard
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brown spot from faw away
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brown spot from close look
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closer look
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randon blading patches
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this one is in the back yard and looks different than the ones in the front as you can see.
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Old 05-09-13, 04:56 PM
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Welcome to the forums!!

sprinklers are on 7 mins in the morning and 7 mins in the afternoon
7 minutes won't even get water to the dirt. Do you have rainfall? What amounts? Sprinkling is costly and in some areas limited, especially in your fine state. Check the regulations. You'll need to water for at least an hour to do any good at all.

Rule #1.....raise your mower height as high as it will go. It will look goofy for a few cuts, and it will look like a pimp car, but the taller the blades of grass, the more shade you are giving your roots and the more moisture you will hold in the soil.

The browish spots can be from underwatering, too close a cut on the mower, or grub worms. Do you have a dog?

Before you go wild with fertilizers, chemicals and the like, you may want to get some soil samples and spend a few bucks to get them analyzed at your local or county extension service. They will give you the proper accoutrements needed for a healthy lawn.

Cute sneakers, too JK!!!
Old 05-09-13, 06:22 PM
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There are funguses like brown patch that afflict turf grasses. Contributing factors can be; over watering, improper fertilizing and too short a cutting height. Fungicides are very effective at treating it but less frequent, deep watering and properly timing fertilizer applications can do a lot without resorting to chemicals. I don't know where you are in CA or what your soil is like but here in NC even in the 100f summer heat deep watering twice a week keeps the grass happy. Watering twice a day is something we do only when establishing new sod.

The last photo looks like a dog stopped by or something like herbicide, gasoline or vineagar was spilled on the lawn.

In spite of your lawn's troubles I'm jealous. I have a lawn of various weeds cut to uniform height and one tiny area of proper manicured lawn.
Old 05-09-13, 06:25 PM
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I'm jealous.
Me, too. 6 1/2 acres of "grass" of some sort, clover and early dandelions if I don't lime it properly. I even cut that at 3 1/2", and it looks.....OK.
Old 05-09-13, 07:16 PM
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The one spot in the last picture is from your dog.

I agree with the others. You need to water so that the grass gets about 1" of water a week. To measure this, place a bowl or can out in the grass for a day and see how much water it gets. Then multiply that x 7 to get per week.

The overall browning might just need a bit of raking to remove.
Old 05-25-13, 10:39 AM
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Water needs to be applied in long stretches so it penetrates to the roots and below, encouraging deep root growth so once or twice a week instead of your daily routine. It should also be done only in the morning. Your current practice will encourage shallow root growth and potentially fungus growth (though I don't think seven minutes of water in the afternoon makes fungus much more likely, as you're just plain not putting much water on in the first place).
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