If you have a lawn in your yard and you haven’t come across the problem of yellow grass then I am pretty sure it will happen to you sooner or later.
Yellow grass can normally be fixed easy enough if you take action quickly when you notice the yellowing is beginning to happen.
I have had to fix yellow grass in my lawn many times so I wrote this article to give you advice on how to make yellow grass green again.
I have listed 9 common problems that can cause yellow grass and simple solutions to make your grass green again.
Table Of Contents
1. Cutting Grass Too Short
Many people don’t get much pleasure out of cutting their lawn and make the drastic decision to cut the lawn as short as possible so that it will be longer before they have to do it again.
Whilst this is true and you won’t have to cut your lawn as often it can lead to yellow grass and an unhealthy lawn.
When your scalp your lawn and cut it very short this will allow the sunshine easier access to the roots and they may dry out quickly which is why your lawn will start to turn yellow.
To stop this problem you will have to change your cutting routine and stop scalping your lawn. If you have currently cut your lawn too short the only solution is to give it a deep water every day until you see the grass slowly turn green again.
There is a recommended height you should cut your lawn at different times of the year and these are as follows –
- The first cut in early spring you should cut your grass to 2.5 inches and for the remainder of spring 3 inches.
- During the summer you should cut your grass to 3.5 inches then in fall change it to 3 inches.
- For the final cut before it gets frosty you should cut your grass to 2.5 inches, trust me these lengths work and will give you a healthy lawn.
if you follow this cutting routine you will have a beautiful lush green lawn that your neighbors will be jealous of all year!
Check out my full article on why cutting grass causes yellowing.
2. Compacted Soil
Compacted soil is exactly what it sounds like, it is when the soil becomes compacted.
There are many things that can cause the soil to become compact. If you have a new house then the soil will often become compacted just as part of new landscaping settling down.
Compacting also happens more often where kids are playing like under a swing or climbing frame where you will notice the grass turning yellow before it completely dies and you’re left with a patch of mud.
When soil becomes compacted it makes it difficult for water to breach the surface and get down to the roots where it is needed most.
This can lead to flooding as the water will run off your lawn instead of getting absorbed by it and as the water can’t get to the root system your grass will turn yellow and die.
The first thing you want to try to solve your compacted soil problem is to use a lawn aerator.
A lawn aerator will make lots of holes in your lawn and this will loosen the topsoil of your lawn which will hopefully solve your problem.
If aerating your lawn doesn’t solve the problem and your soil is compacted deeper down you will have to use a tiller make your soil un-compacted.
The problem with this solution is that it will rip up your lawn and you will have to re-lay or reseed the whole area and start it again.
3. It’s Too Hot
I personally do like the sunshine and warm weather while sitting in my yard with luscious green grass.
The problem is the longer the sunny hot spell the more I see my grass deteriorating and turning yellow, fortunately, this doesn’t happen every year as some years are hotter than others, such is the nature of the cyclical weather system on planet earth.
Grass generally does like sunshine and warm weather but if it gets too hot for too long it will dry out and this will be bad for the health of your lawn and you will see it deteriorating especially if you don’t look after correctly.
When you are experiencing very hot weather your lawn will dry out and become yellow and unhealthy especially if you don’t give it the extra water it needs during the heatwave.
During a heatwave, you should water your lawn as early in the morning as possible before it gets hot.
You should give your grass a deep water so that the top 6 inches of soil is moist, you can check this out by sticking a six-inch screwdriver in the ground and if it goes down all the way easy enough you have watered it sufficiently.
If you have a lawn then I am sure you water it without thinking about how much you should actually be watering it or without realizing that if you overwater your lawn it will do more damage than good.
There are some pretty obvious signs of a lawn that is getting over watered, If after you water your lawn it feels spongy that is an obvious sign of overwatering, if there are mushrooms or any fungus growing on your lawn that is a pretty obvious sign there is too much water.
Overwatering your lawn is very bad for your grass as it can wash out all the nutrients your grass needs to grow healthy as well as saturating your lawn.
This means air won’t be able to get down into it and grass does need air to remain healthy if your lawn isn’t getting the required nutrients the most obvious sign of this is that it will start to turn yellow.
The only solution for an overwatered lawn is to dry it out and change your watering routine to either water it fewer days per week or when you are watering it, water it for fewer minutes.
Overwatering your lawn is very bad for it so you should fix it as soon as you realize this is a problem, it is actually worse to overwater your lawn compared to underwatering, however, you should strive for the perfect watering routine.
5. Not Fertilizing
Lots of people do enjoy using their lawns during the summer but they really don’t take good care of them.
After years and years of not properly looking after your lawn, it will eventually become drained of nutrients possibly turn yellow and generally become unhealthy.
Water and sunshine are only two of the necessary ingredients to grow a healthy lawn and if you haven’t used fertilizer on your lawn for years there is a good chance all the healthy nutrients that your grass needs to survive and thrive will become washed out of it.
You better start fertilizing your lawn and make it part of your annual lawn care routine.
You should fertilize your lawn at the first signs of it starting to grow for the year which is normally around March or April.
I fertilize my lawn approximately every 6 weeks through the season right up until the first Frost.
I prefer to use a granular slow-release fertilizer so that it will be fertilizing my lawn slowly over a period of time rather than giving it a quick burst of nutrients.
6. Too Much Fertilizer
If you love your grass and look after it properly feeding your lawn fertilizer will be part of your routine.
This is a good thing unless you love your lawn too much love and feed it too much fertilizer thinking that giving your lawn loads of fertilizer will do it loads of good when this is, in fact, the opposite of the truth.
If you have fertilized your lawn and it now has brown spots or yellow grass this is a sign you have over fertilized it and it is now suffering from fertilizer burn.
Fertilizer burn is more common from quick-release fertilizer that quickly releases all the nutrients into the soil at the one time, there is less risk when you use a slow-release fertilizer.
You have to act as soon as you notice brown or yellow streaks in your lawn as if you leave it without corrective action your grass may not be able to be saved and you will have to reseed your whole lawn.
If you fertilize your lawn and you notice yellow grass and brown streaks your lawn has fertilizer burn, a simple treatment for this is to soak your lawn with water every day for around 7 to 10 days and this should wash out the excess fertilizer.
If the grass isn’t turning green after a few weeks you may have to consider reseeding the affected areas.
Check out my article on yellow grass during the winter.
7. Dog Urine
This is not a joke, Dog urine contains a high nitrogen content which kills grass.
Whilst a limited amount of nitrogen is actually good for your lawn that’s why it is in many fertilizers, a highly concentrated amount of nitrogen will turn your lawn yellow, brown, and kill the grass.
Some people say this is a worse problem when you have a female dog because they sit and do the toilet all in one area whereas a male dog will lift his leg and dribble while he is was walking around.
Time to get rid of your dog.
Only joking, luckily there are many solutions to stop dog urine killing the grass in your lawn without having to get rid of your dog.
- You should encourage your dog to drink more water as if it does this the nitrogen content will be more diluted and less harmful to your grass.
- If you see your dog urinating on your lawn you should spray the area with water as this will dilute the problem.
- If you use a fertilizer that has nitrogen in it you should really stop using it as this will add to the problem.
- You should train your dog to only pee in one area as this means you have a dog toilet area instead of your whole lawn looking like a toilet.
If you follow this advice you will have a beautiful green lawn in no time again.
8. Petrol On The Lawn
If you use a petrol lawnmower and you notice yellow patches in the grass this could be because of spillage or a leak as petrol will kill grass quickly.
If you accidentally spill petrol on your lawn then you need to act quickly to limit the damage.
Don’t fill up your petrol lawn mower on your lawn as this is just an accident waiting to happen.
If you have spilled petrol on your lawn you need to take action to try and limit the damage.
If possible when you spill petrol on your lawn you should quickly add a layer of sand as the sand should absorb some of the petrol.
remove the sand from your lawn and give it a thorough spray with water as this should dilute the petrol and hopefully dilute the problem.
If your grass dies the only solution is to aerate your lawn and reseed it and it will recover over time.
Your first notice fungus has brown or yellow patches on your lawn, lots of fungicides are harmless to the crash but you may want to remedy the situation if it is going in the look of your lawn.
There are several things that could be responsible for the fungus such as a wrong watering routine too much or too little water, as the temperature is rapidly changing from hot and cold, using too much fertilizer or even cutting your grass too short.
There are lots of natural ways you can attempt to get rid of fungus from your lawn and I would recommend to try these before the last resort of using chemicals.
You should try watering your lawn less as damp conditions can be ideal for fungus, if you’re using fertilizer you should double check the instructions because if you’re using the wrong amount it can cause fungus.
Aerate your lawn as this will create better-growing conditions for grass and try leaving your grass a longer length as this will sometimes make fungus disappear.
finally, if nothing else works you should apply a fungicide by following the instructions on the bottle and your fungus problem should be solved.
If you know of any other reasons for yellow grass I have missed, leave a comment and let me know about it.