How to Fix Dead Spots in Your Lawn

A dead spot on the lawn can be quite annoying and ugly to look at. There are a number of reasons why such spots occur. It could be due to your pet dog urinating. Dogs tend to visit the same spot every time and this concentration may have caused the grass to burn out. Certain fungus diseases could also cause bare sports. A stone or rock close to the surface, where the dead spot is may be preventing the grass from taking root and hence causing the dead spot. If this is the case you would need to remove this rock or stone before you attempt repairs. There is a chance that the spot where the grass is dead is a ‘blind’ spot for your sprinkler and that area of the lawn does not get the necessary irrigation. Another quite common cause of a dead spot is the spilling of gasoline or fertilizer. Do not top up your mower tank while it is on the lawn. Also make your preparations for fertilizers away form the lawn.

Now that we have found out the likely reasons for that dead spot or spots, and have taken action to eliminate the likely reasons, we next have to make the necessary repairs so that the lawn looks wholesome and green once again.

The right time to do this is in the fall, just before the winter. You need to match the grass with what you already have so arrange the necessary seeds accordingly. Consult with your local nursery if you are not able to do this on your own. Never mix up any other grass as this could cause other problems, and make your lawn look patchy. If the spot is very small you can choose to ignore it and hope that the adjacent grass will overgrow it. But if not, this is what you need to do.

Remove all the soil in the dead area and ensure that it has no rock below it. Make the sides of the area vertical and fill in the prepared area with fresh soil. Plant the seeds so that they are just a quarter of an inch below the top and top up the area with soil. Tamp it down lightly with the back of the hoe or even your boot. Apply a light sprinkling of fertilizer. Water and cover the patch with some dry straw, so that the seeds have some protection while they germinate. See that this area is watered using a fine mist setting on your sprinkler, so that the soil does not get washed out. Only the top of the new patch needs to be wet, but ensure that it never dries out during the two weeks that it would require to catch root. Gradually increase the watering so that the soil is also damp.

See that the area is not walked on and remains un-mowed till the grass has grown to a length of at least three inches. This may take about three weeks. Also refrain from any medication to control weeds in that area until the grass is firmly established.

You can greatly reduce all these activities if you are able to get a piece of sod with similar grass. Prepare the area similarly and cut the sod to match the area of dead grass. Match the top surface of the sod and your existing lawn and sprinkle some soil on the sod.


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