In McDonough, Georgia, downy mildew also known as yellow tuft is a common lawn disease but is often misdiagnosed.  This type of lawn disease is associated with poorly drained, heavily irrigated areas and also areas of excessive rain fall.  The spore of downy mildew, uses water a medium to travel to healthy plants.  The spores literally swim through the standing water in your lawn to infect healthy host plants.  Early stages of yellow tuft are thickened leaf blades and stunted growth which may be hard to see.  As the disease progresses small yellow patches form.   Each patch consist of excessively tillered plants and shallow roots.  These patches or yellow tufts resemble straw in texture and appearance and can be easily pulled from the turf stand.  The grass blades may also be mottled or spotted with yellow, green, brown, or black.   It is important to remove all infected plants as this type of lawn disease will overwinter on any dead plant material left.   Listed below are a few management tips for preventing downy mildew in McDonough, Georgia.

 

  1. Improve drainage to remove excess water
  2. Mow turf when lawn is DRY
  3. Irrigate from below if possible
  4. Improve air circulation with pruning