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Red Thread in Springfield, MA

The most common lawn disease of this spring is Red Thread.

It has been a cool and wet spring so far in Springfield, MA and it has brought us an abundance of lawn diseases. A cosmetic only disease, Red thread affects all of our cool season grasses here in New England and is seen when we experience cool temperatures with wet weather.

The disease affects the individual leaves of the plant causing that leaf to turn a red color at the tips and die back to the crown. In lawns, these patches will appear in diffuse patches and range from 2-4 inches in size. In this picture you can see the Mycelium (the vegetative part of the fungus), this will appear in the early morning when the dews are still present. The sclerotia (seeds) of the fungus is the part of the disease that is threadlike and appears on the tip of the blades. It breaks off when the plant dries out and can live in the thatch for up to two years waiting for favourable conditions to return to infect the plant again.
Red Thread

So, what should you do if your lawn is suffering from Red Thread? The best treatment or prevention for Red Thread lies in good cultural practices. The slow release fertilizer we provided in April will help the plant create new leaf blades and work its way out of the lawn. In the meantime you can help by;

  • Preventing excessive moisture on the lawn, lawns are so saturated that watering hasn’t been required yet.

  • Make sure you are only watering early in the mornings and never in the afternoons or night, this will increase leaf wetness and further spread the fungus.

  • Make sure your mower blades are sharp to minimize wounding of the leaf which can enhance the spread of the disease.

  • Maintain a pH between 6.0 and 6.5 so that you are getting the best results from our fertilizers is also import. In New England, a fall or spring Lime is a must.

  • Excesses thatch in the lawn can harbor the disease so having a fall core aeration is also a key cultural practice for reducing diseases in lawns.

If you have any further questions about Red Thread or other issues in your lawn don’t hesitate to call, text us at (413) 736-9333 or email us at!

Brought to you by Weed Man Springfield, MA