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High Temps On Turfgrass Spark Concerns


Is your lawn looking dry or brown?

Well, the extremely high temperatures we are experiencing in Nashville are to blame. These 90 degree days are not only affecting the time you spend outside, but they are also impacting your lawn’s soil temperature in a negative way. Here’s why:

Most lawns in Middle Tennessee are made up of cool-season grasses. The most common cool-season grass found in this area is tall fescue. These grasses are suitable for areas that have cold winters with temperatures that fall below freezing and warm summers, without extended hot periods.

Though tall fescue will tolerate some periods of hot temperatures, it cannot handle extended periods of soil temperatures that rise above 90 degrees. When soil temperatures stay above 90 degrees, tall fescue begins to go dormant, shutting down, and turning brown to tolerate the hot temperatures. When soil temperatures remain above 94 degrees, tall fescue begins to die.

Many of our customers are experiencing this in their yards and are calling in with concern. We wanted to let you know that since most lawns are a cool-season grass; there is nothing you can do to prevent this from happening. It’s a waiting game and at this point, we just want to keep it alive. Increasing the amount of water you give your lawn will not fix it. It will keep your lawn greener, but you will end up with more weeds and disease that will have to be addressed in the long run.

Our recommendation

Our recommendation is to maintain your normal watering schedule, allow your lawn to turn a little bit brown, and know as it starts to cool off it will recover. Remember your grass is tolerating these extended periods of hot temperatures by going dormant.

As a reminder, we are within 30 days of starting to seed and aerate. Download our free lawn care calendar to learn more.