Living in Northeast Ohio, there’s a good chance you’ve had Snow Mold. Weather conditions this winter have been optimal for the growth of snow mold. One day it’s 60 and golfing weather, the next evening we’re shoveling snow off the driveway.
What is Snow Mold?
Snow Mold is a fungal disease that occurs underneath the snow where the ground is not previously, completely frozen. As early spring approaches and the snow melts away, we’re going to start to notice these brownish, dead grass spots in our lawns, that’s the effects of snow mold.
What Does it Look Like?
Snow Mold is just patches of dead and matted down grass as seen here in the picture on the right. It’s usually spotty and found in various areas of your lawn. There are two common types:
- Pink Snow Mold – (most common in Ohio) the web type mold that turns pink as it matures.
- Gray Snow Mold – similar to pink, gray will remain a lightish gray. Gray Snow Mold will also show blackish spots on the grass blades and leaf as it matures.
How Can We Prevent Snow Mold?
While we may not get it all, there’s a several things we can do, or not do to our lawn to prevent snow mold. Here’s a few tips to combat Snow Mold on your Northeast Ohio lawn:
- Fall Aeration and Lime Application – The calcium in the lime pellets help prevent the snow mold and the aeration relieves the compaction of the soil, which is also associated with snow mold.
- Mow your lawn until it stops growing – Snow mold will grown in longer grass or in lawns that didn’t have a fall cleanup under leaves and debris. We suggest mowing a bit tighter in the fall.
- Avoid Nitrogen-Rich fertilizer in the fall – Fertilizers very high in nitrogen applied in the fall can promote the growth of snow mold. We apply a low-nitrogen winterizing fertilizer in the fall that promotes root development and inhibits the formation of snow mold.
- Keep a clean lawn – lawns that are kept neat, clean, fertilized properly, and mowed tight in the fall will always have less snow mold in the spring.
How Do I Get Rid of Snow Mold?
Remember, snow mold thrives in wet conditions and as the ground dries out and spring become summer, it will eventually cease growth and new grass will grow out. If you’re not treating your lawn with a fungicide, promote the drying of your lawn.
Gently rake snow mold infected areas to encourage drying. If you have low spots in your lawn, top-dress them with good topsoil then over-seed those infected areas.
Since snow mold is a fungus, if the snow mold is sever enough, it takes a fungicide to get rid of it. If caught early enough, we can treat your lawn with a specially formulated fungicide that will prevent further growth of the snow mold.
Feel free to contact us at 330-861-5035 if you have any questions or need a quote. You may also comment here and we’ll be more than happy to reply.