Good liquid fungicide to help prevent brown patch

carillon(East TN - Zone 7a)June 17, 2014

I got me a new back-pack sprayer for Father's Day and I'd like to apply a liquid fungicide to try and hold off the inevitable brown patch given the temps in the 90s etc.

What liquid-based fungicides would be up to this task? Thanks!

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Well the heat and drying action of 90s temperatures is the easiest way to control funguses. The fungicides would be a redundant waste of money and about as effective as spraying sterilized sand.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 3:34PM
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dchall_san_antonio(8 San Antonio)

I agree with that. When you read the fine print on fungicides they all say not to apply when temps will get above 80 to 85 degrees. That leaves summer out of the question for most of us.

Secondly, much more than half of the beneficial microbes which live in your soil are fungi. The beneficial fungi are the ones that keep the brown patch fungus under control. When you spray fungicide willy-nilly, you kill off a good portion of the beneficial life in your soil. If you wanted to really feed the beneficial fungi so they can really control the diseases, apply ordinary corn meal at a rate of 20 pounds per 1,000 square feet. Corn meal attracts a particularly predatory fungus which feeds on the disease fungi.

Why do you get brown patch every year? I get it every year, too, but I know why. My wife leaves her garden pruning on the grass and cuts off the air flow. By the next morning the dew has already kicked off the brown patch. Then I have to rake up the pruned leaves and find the grass (St Augustine) yellowing. If you can figure out why you get it, you might be able to stop it. But corn meal will stop it - at least it has for me every year since 2002. I get corn meal at the local feed store, but I understand not everyone is that lucky. Call around. You want ordinary corn meal, not corn GLUTEN meal. CGM is about twice as expensive as corn.

If you want to spray something, spray a mix of molasses (2 ounces per gallon of water), milk (same amount), liquid seaweed (same), and baby shampoo (3 ounces per). This is an organic mix which improves the health of the microbes which live on the leaves of plants and at the soil surface. This is like a miniature organic fertilizer but just for the plant surfaces. Real fertilizers require pounds of nitrogen and can't be applied with a sprayer. You can spray the entire garden, every leaf surface, with that mix every week or two, and you should see all the sucking bugs like aphids and spider mites disappear.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 6:40PM
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Oh, as a child in Florida I never appreciated any of the creeping southern grasses as they mat and as they mat the green grass portion is pushed up higher, the mower still cuts at the same level, and wala, brown patches. That and the heat. It's grasses behavior to go dormant when the climate isn't to it's liking. It's protective of the grass.

Plus those types of grasses don't feel good on bare feet but that's what those sandy hot southern climates can grow so it's better than weeds and sand or those blasted thorn spur weeds that grow everywhere in Florida.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 7:10PM
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dchall_san_antonio(8 San Antonio)

If you're growing St Augustine properly, you should minimize the bad experiences. We see excellent St Aug lawns growing near the gulf in pure sand.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 7:58PM
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jdo053103(7b - NC)

Heritage is the best against brown patch, many univeristy tests to back that up. If applied as a preventative it last 28 days. Watch your temps, apply at dusk or dawn it over 85.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2014 at 12:42PM
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Cite those 'many university tests' and define 'brown patch' please.

Maybe the same universities recommended importing Kudzu too.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2014 at 1:05PM
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