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National Seed News

Posted on: 10/05/18

Posted on: 9/6/18




Posted on: 8/10/18




Posted on: 7/19/18

Perhaps the most serious turf disease likely to occur in northern Illinois is summer patch and necrotic ring spot, two separate diseases that attack grass roots and previously were referred to as fusarium blight. Research continues to look for information on these diseases. Brown patch may also attack turfgrasses. These "patch diseases" are similar in appearance and management in lawns.

Summer patch and brown patch tends to be most active in hot weather, while necrotic ring spot tends to be most active in late spring and in fall. Disease symptoms often show under turf stress in summer, however. Crescent shaped or circular patches of dead grass, often with clumps of green grass inside, are a characteristic symptom (often called "frogeye"). Lawn and other turf areas with advanced disease development may show irregular dead areas and streaks. 

Patch diseases typically develop on turf with stress factors such as excessive thatch, poor soil conditions, sod installed over a poorly prepared site, irregular/excessive nitrogen fertility, and related problems. One typical situation in which these diseases occur is recently sodded lawns (within 2 - 5 years) put down over a clay soil, usually with good care (high watering & fertility) to keep the grass green and vigorous. This condition leads to poor root penetration and development, and also often a problem thatch layer.

Management of these diseases consists of correcting soil problems and implementing proper cultural practices, overseeding dead areas, and possibly fungicide applications. Improving conditions for root growth and reducing problem thatch is critical. Practices such as core aerifying and topdressing, along with sound fertilizing, mowing (avoid mowing too short), and watering are suggested. Spring and fall are suggested times for aerifying, assuming the turf is actively growing. Avoid heavy spring applications of nitrogen fertilizer. Focus most applications on the fall period. Fertilizers containing controlled-release nitrogen are suggested. Overseed dead areas with perennial ryegrass and resistant Kentucky bluegrass cultivars in late August or early September.

These management suggestions may not bring immediate results, but will get the patch disease under control in the long run. Fungicides are an option to help prevent further development on unaffected grass, but will not reverse the factors causing the disease or eliminate the disease. Fungicides treat the symptoms but not the cause of the problem.

Written by Bruce Spangenberg, former Extension Educator, Horticulture. University of Illinois Extension.


Posted on: 6/12/18

Tree Check Sonic Wave Tree Decay Detector is a breakthrough technology in sonic wave timers that will become an international standard in the pre-climb safety check, tree risk assessment and urban forestry inventories. Tree Check is designed for arborists and urban foresters as a low cost, simple to use, reliable field tool to detect the likely presence of significant decay, cavity or cracks in standing trees. Used properly it can "see inside the tree" revealing areas of concealed severe deterioration that undiscovered could result in tree structural failure or resultant property damage or personal injury.



Posted on: 5/08/18

Mosquito control can be a profitable service add-on. Everyone agrees mosquitoes are an annoying and potentially dangerous pest in the summer months. That would seem to present a big business opportunity for anyone in the business of getting rid of mosquitoes. Lawn and landscape companies that have begun offering mosquito control services are taking advantage of that broad-based demand.

Not only can mosquitoes carry diseases that afflict humans, but they also can transmit several diseases and parasites that dogs and horses are very susceptible to. These include dog heart worms, eastern equine encephalitis and West Nile virus.

There are about 200 different species of mosquitoes in the United States, which live in specific habitats, exhibit unique behaviors and bite different types of animals.

Different species of mosquitoes prefer different types of standing water in which to lay their eggs. The presence of beneficial predators such as fish and dragonfly nymphs in permanent ponds, lakes and streams help keep these bodies of water relatively free of mosquito larvae. However, portions of marshes, swamps, clogged ditches and temporary pools and puddles are all prolific mosquito breeding sites.



Posted on: 4/4/18



Posted on: 3/1/18

Posted on: 2/05/18


Posted on: 1/09/18


Posted on: 12/7/17


Posted on: 11/03/17

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