Yellow grass blades throughout lawn

Asked July 31, 2019, 8:31 AM EDT

Since spring we have yellow grass blades all throughout the lawn. They are the color and texture of straw. I say blades because when I pull them, they are mostly dead plants but often on the other end are small tiny green blades. This is not in patches of the lawn, but throughout. Iron was applied earlier in the summer but no difference has been seen. Please help!

Montgomery County Maryland lawns and turf

7 Responses

Can you send photos of your lawn and what you pull up? That might be helpful to us. Is your lawn a blend of tall fescue cultivars or a mixture of other grass species? If it is a mixture perhaps the grass that does not do well in our area like perennial ryegrass is dying out. That is one possibility but hopefully, your photos will help out.

Deb

I've attached some photos. The 3rd one shows live growth on the other end, but I've also pulled it to find that both ends of the plant are dead.

Thanks so much for your help!

We could have perennial rye in there, I don't know for sure.

Also, is it possible to fertilize something to death? or should I open a new ticket for that? I once heard that the plant grows itself to death. Would like to try it on nimblewill!

Thanks,
Elise

Thanks for the photos. If this is what the majority of your lawn looks like renovation may be necessary. The middle photo shows wild violets and it looks like the 3rd photo is nimblewill but it is hard to say for sure.
It is not really possible to fertilize something to death and certainly, the overuse of fertilizer is bad for the environment.
The following is the link to our lawn renovation information,
https://extension.umd.edu/hgic/lawns/lawn-renovation

Replies to lawn weed control questions from people in Montgomery now need to allow for the Montgomery County Pesticide Law. The Court of Special Appeals of Maryland recently ruled in favor of the law restricting the use of pesticides on private lawns and childcare facility grounds in Montgomery County. This is a new law and Montgomery County officials are still deciding on how to proceed. The Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection has information about the law and organic lawn care on their website

https://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/lawns/

We also have some resources on our website that may be of help to you:

Organic lawn care - https://extension.umd.edu/hgic/topics/organic-lawn-care

Tips for Lawn Weed Prevention and Management - https://extension.umd.edu/hgic/topics/tips-lawn-weed-prevention-and-management

Deb

It is the "straw" grass I'm concerned about it. I am very familiar with nimblewill and it is not that. I know someone else with the exact same problem. (I know I have lots of wild violets, and have to consider lawn renovation!!) Thanks!

When selecting your seed before your lawn renovation project look on the grass seed label to make sure it is a blend of tall fescue. A possibility for the straw-like grass is that there was some other grass species like perennial ryegrass as part of a mixture of seed. Perennial ryegrass, while contained in many grass mixtures sold in our area does not do particularly well here and tends to die out.
And actually, it is okay to have some wild violets mixed into your lawn.

Deb

Thank you Deb! You're probably right on the perennial rye grass; a service (that we no longer use) did the overseeding so I don't know what was in it! Appreciate it! Elise