Lawn, diseased or ?

Asked April 18, 2019, 3:12 PM EDT

I recently moved into my Highlands Ranch home and have no knowledge of how the lawn was cared for. My backyard lawn looks splotchy (photos attached. Can you tell what the problem might be and offer a solution. Thanks, Stephen Block

Douglas County Colorado

1 Response

Hi Stephen:

Let me start by asking you a few questions about your lawn. What is the exposure? Which direction does it face? It looks like it might be on a hill. Is that correct? It looks extremely dry and given our fairly generous moisture this winter, it makes me wonder if run-off is an issue. The damage looks like dog pee damage. Dog pee is straight nitrogen which kills the grass in the immediate area of urination, but acts like a fertilizer on the perimeter, hence the color. Do you or did the previous owner have a dog? Can stray dogs use this as a potty spot? The damage in general looks like neglect and lack of water. So without any more information I would have the lawn aerated and overseed it with a grass of your choice. Make sure you water or use irrigation to give the lawn about an inch of water a week. If the lawn is on a hill, make sure you water more often but not as long since you don't want to incur run-off, which is common on clay soil. Clay takes longer to absorb moisture. Here is the link to a fact sheet that outlines how to renovate your lawn:

https://extension.colostate.edu/docs/pubs/garden/07241.pdf

https://extension.colostate.edu/docs/pubs/garden/07202.pdf

Please don't hesitate to contact us with more questions.