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Is your lawn a little ‘Rusty’?

 

A lawn infected with rust fungus

A closer view of grass blades showing rust pustules

Rust, a fungus of the Pucciniaceae family, is a lawn condition that stains the surface blades of the turfgrass plant making them appear similar to metal left out in the elements.

Rust is ugly on a lawn but is usually harmless to grass. However, it does work as a good indicator of your lawn’s current overall health and care regimen, since it (in most situations) does not appear on grass that is growing optimally.

Rust appears as tiny red-orange pustules on the surface of the grass blade, which can rub off and colour your shoes, pants and lawn tools. It spreads down the grass blade slowly, so it will only become noticeable when the grass is growing slowly due to stress, lack of water, low fertility, or a combination.  More often than not, we at LawnSavers see it appear on lawns that have not been mowed frequently enough.  Heavy night time dews, cooler temperatures and more frequent rains are largely responsible for allowing it to flourish.

Getting rid of rust is simple – just get the grass growing vigorously again.

  1. Have a professional fertilization done that has a healthy amount of nitrogen – all of LawnSaver’s customers on lawn care packages receive regular fertilization, and we also offer individual applications, as well as winterization treatments that are a big help. LawnSavers Custom blend of fertilizer contains the right mix of nutrients for our areas unique needs. From time to time, lawns may require additional nitrogen, if they are receiving too much water or have poorer soils supporting them.
  2. Water deeply, early in the morning – lawns need 1.5 to 2 inches of water every week. Proper lawn watering focusing on morning watering, prevents the lingering dampness which fungus loves which is more often encouraged with evening watering. The trick is longer duration, less often. Once or twice a week is enough.
  3. Most importantly, mow frequently (every 5 – 7 days), and bag the clippings if they are longer than one inch – removing the infected tops of the grass will stop it from spreading. Be sure to sharpen your blade at least twice a year to ensure a clean cut, rather than a ragged edge that attracts infection.

Rust will runs it’s course eventually.  But if you make the changes to mowing and watering, you will develop the right habits to ensure a greener and healthier lawn for the long term!

You can learn more about common lawn fungi here.

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  • Coping with Covid Update: (updated 04/16/21)

    Hi Everyone, 

    LawnSavers managed to persevere through this last pandemic year with the loyal partnership of our clients.

    We are able to service lawns and perform pest control services in all our service areas,  officially on the Provincial list of essential services due to our ability to provide service safely and with no personal contact!

    Our office remains open in addition to some remote staff.   Please note our office may be experiencing a higher volume of calls.  We know how much everyone hates being left on hold, so please leave us a message or email us at greatservice@lawnsavers.com and we will get back to you in less than 24 hours.  (you can now also text us at 905-707-9994)
    Please be patient with us, we will get back to you as fast as possible.
    You can also sign up for services on our website by clicking here.

    2020 is now behind us.  Together with our customers, we face Covid-19 head-on as a community-minded local small family business and are extremely grateful to be able to survive and keep all of our loyal employees working hard with us through it all.

    2020 threw everything bad that it could at us:

    • Nine days of snow, ice and wintry weather in May.
    • One of the hottest driest summers on record with long spells of grass-killing heat and drought. Read more here in our 2020 summary blog.
    • A bumper crop of crabgrass that germinated in the perfect (rainless) storm.
    • Chinch Bug numbers were record breaking and persisted through the dry heat they love, secretly killing lawns while dormant! We can help with Chinch bug damage
    • We put together an easy to read lawn care service timeline that you can use to know when to expect us for each scheduled service in your package. 

    I want to reassure you that in every decision we make around COVID-19, our number one priority remains the health and safety of our employees and customers.  Safety, Integrity and honesty are our most important core values.  We will continue to follow strict safety guidelines that ensure “zero touch”.  We will not let our guard down on exercising our safety protocols!

    Thank you all for your understanding and extra patience during these challenging times. Our team works hard, so if you are met with our exceptional service from our technicians or office team members- please give them a thumbs up to make them smile or let me know through a quick email to feedback@lawnsavers.com

    We thank you for supporting our local, family-owned business of 31 years.
    We
     genuinely appreciate each and every one of you and promise that we will do our part to ensure our mutual safety and look forward to be back on your lawn as soon as possible this Spring

    Thank you in advance,
    Kyle Tobin
    Chief Environmental Officer