My pastures are rampant with the "black patch" clover fungus and my...

Asked August 29, 2013, 5:04 PM EDT

My pastures are rampant with the "black patch" clover fungus and my horses are slobbering something terrible. We tried mowing and then waiting for the new growth, hoping it would be less infected with the fungus, but it hasn't worked. Is there any kind of fungicide or other treatment we could apply that will control it without harming the horses? Thanks for any advice you can give us. Joanne & John Loftus, Orange Village, Ohio

Cuyahoga County Ohio

1 Response

Rhizoctonia infection of clovers and then the subsequent consumption is the cause of slobbers. Clovers are relatively easy to remove from pastures and hayfields through management for grass and with the use of broadleaf weed control products. Manage for more grass by following a fertility program based on a soil test for grass (available from your local Extension office) this would involve nitrogen applications to stimulate lush grass to crowd out the clover and managing for a taller pasture sward leaving 6-8 inches of residual grazing mass or more. When you see clovers remove them from the pasture with an herbicide utilize a broadleaf chemical that won’t harm the grass and has no grazing restriction for horses such as (Crossbow, there are many products to choose from). Remove affected animals from the clover and feed clean hay until controlled.