Anthracnose (lawn/turf)


Paul Bachi, University of Kentucky Research and Education Center,


Anthracnose is a general term for fungal diseases that attack shade trees, shrubs and lawns. It is most common on cool-season lawns (especially creeping Bentgrass and Annual Bluegrass) suffering from heat stress in midsummer, but it can also occur in spring or fall. On turf, Anthracnose leaves yellowing patches from 2 inches to 12 inches and grows slowly over time. Turf picks up a yellowish tinge and wilts quickly, looking like it needs water. Close examination may show rotting at the base of individual grass stems.

Cultural Solutions
  • Water properly, wetting the entire root zone (6 to 8 inches deep) and allowing the turf to partially dry between irrigations (guide to watering your lawn)
  • Fertilize properly. Low fertility can compound problems. If unsure, have soil tested.
  • Mow higher. Mowing too low can increase problems.