Monday, June 3, 2019

More Myths & Water Tips

Horticulture Hotline 06/03/19
By Bill Lamson-Scribner

I’m going to continue with the myths from last week. I got a lot of funny comments about the myths.

Please water your grass. Don’t spend a lot of money on fungicides and insecticides when all you need to do is apply a little water. Wetting agents will greatly improve the efficacy of your watering, saving you money in the long run. Go to any of the 3 local Possum’s Stores and they can show you pictures of what Possum’s Wetting Agent with Biostimulants can do for your yard. If you have a brown area in your lawn, get a trowel, a shovel, serving spoon out of the kitchen (if the person reading this is a man, do not tell your wife you are using her kitchen utensils in the yard – trust me on this one – you’ll thank me later), dig in the soil and see if it is dusty dry. If it is dusty dry – just add water. This topic can lead right into Myth 1 for this week:

1.      Myth – “I have an irrigation system that I run 3 times a week; therefore, I must have a fungus not a dry spot.”

Depending on how they are designed and maintained, irrigation systems do not cover 100% of a yard 100% of the time. During the original design, some areas (like where sidewalks meet driveways in a triangle) could have been omitted. As the system ages, maybe a valve (zone) quits working, or a head is broken and not coming up or turning like it should. The landscape can mature and a shrub may block the spray from the head, causing an area to not get the water that is intended. Wind plays a factor, blowing the water into a different area. Heads get damaged by edgers, aerators, cars, mowers…

2.      Myth – “I heard nitrogen causes disease in turfgrass, so this year I’m going to only apply SeaHume and Iron to my lawn.”

Not a real good idea. Nitrogen is like protein for humans – it is needed. Nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium got to be the three numbers on a bag (16-04-08) of fertilizer because they are needed for healthy plant growth. Nitrogen got the number one position because it is the most important; however, there are 16 essential elements that need to be available in the correct amounts for optimal plant growth. If the turf does not have these 16 elements, it is more susceptible to disease, traffic, and insect attack.

Basically, in human terms, it would be like me saying I hate colds. I heard vitamin C prevents colds, so all I’m going to eat is vitamin C. I would die!