Wet weather hints and tips
With parts of the East Coast of Australia experiencing a long overdue rain event there are some factors to consider when it comes to giving your lawn the best chance of survival during extended periods of heavy rainfall.
Nothing beats mother nature as we are all aware, and in the case of a rain event like that which we have been experiencing, this is where we must relax, be patient and observe how our lawn copes and reacts with the heavy rainfall. As much as we love rain events for the sake of refilling dams, water tanks, flushing waterways and rivers and of course watering our lawn, too much water can alert us to issues we did not know of or have prior to the rainfall.
As the rainfall intensifies your soil profile can reach the point where it will no longer allow infiltration and pooling/flooding starts to appear. Right there and then is a great opportunity to take some photos. Why? Once the rain event passes and your lawn begins to dry out, the photos you have taken will allow you to revisit those areas effected and work on levelling any undulations and increase drainage if required.
Why is too much water an issue?
Unfortunately, there is not a great deal you can do at this stage apart from observe whilst your lawn becomes drenched, the downside to this is your lawn can basically suffocate during this period. All turfgrass varieties require three elements to survive being oxygen, sunlight, and water and when your lawn is sodden and flooded, your turf variety is unable to draw on the oxygen needed in the soil profile to survive. This becomes even more significant to your turfs survival if drainage is poor and or the turf remains underwater for several days.
As the rain event passes and the sunshine returns, along with rising soil temperatures your lawn will start to respond with increased growth. The most common mistake made by homeowners is now as we are too eager to start performing our lawn duties and tasks whilst the lawn is too wet, mowing wet grass that has been sodden for days can pose more issues as oppose to waiting till the lawn dries out.
As the excess water disperses and the ground begins to dry it is now at this point, we can venture out and start any rectification works and general yard duties. Walking over and inspecting the lawn is very beneficial at this stage as we know one of the biggest issues that can present following heavy rainfall/flooding is leeching. This is where nutrients and elements can be flushed from your profile leaving your turf looking pale and or yellow. Fertilising at this point may be required if these symptoms present.
At this point we are not out of the woods yet, why? Usually after a rain event we will experience the heat and humidity and these two factors combined with excess moisture content will increase disease pressures. Diseases these days can be treated easily with the use of a specialised fungicides.
A fungicide we highly recommend is Voltar GT which provides curative, protectant and eradicant activity. Voltar GT also contains improved rain fast properties. Works in most weather conditions. Voltar GT is a Broad-spectrum fungicide, registered for the control of 6 turf diseases, including foliar and root pathogens.