With the weather cooling down, it is now time to keep an eye pealed for fungus. Especially Brown Patch. Brown Patch will affect all types of grass but really likes St Augustine. The best ways to prevent Brown Patch (other lawn fungus as well) are modifying the way we fertilize, water, mow and mower maintenance. Avoid using water-soluble nitrogen (fast release), instead look for water-insoluble nitrogen (slow release or time release). During cool weather we should only water in the morning and never in the evening. At the first sign of brown patch start bagging the lawn. The final step is mower maintenance. With the mower turned off, spray the tires, blades and under side of the deck with a 50% mixture of water and bleach. This will kill any attached fungal spores and keep it from spreading. Let it dry for about 20 minutes and you are good to go.
You should be on the lookout for fungal issues during this time of the year. Detecting a problem early makes it much easier to cure. If you find yourself with a fungal problem, there are both all-natural and synthetic fungicides available. One of the best is an all-natural called Atinovate and second on the list is agricultural corn meal. On the synthetic side is Ferti-lome’s Liquid Systemic Fungicide and the granulated F-Stop. Fungicides only work if a fungus is present. There are no preventive fungicides, they are all curative. Remember this is a process, not an event.