Correcting Brown Spots and Summer Lawn Stress

Jun 24, 2022

Tips for Summer Lawn Stress Recovery

Grasses, including cool and warm season grasses, often go dormant during periods of heat and dry conditions. This is a measure of protection from summer lawn stress. When grass turns brown, Endurant Turf Colorants can instantly green up the grass without causing harm to the turf. Also, here are several other ways to help green up the lawn and protect the grass from dying.

While heat and dry conditions stress the lawn, if grass receives sufficient moisture, growth slows but the grass blades remain green. However, during times of prolonged drought without irrigation, or often due to water restrictions, grass turns brown.

Although the harsh temperatures of summer can wear down your lawn, drying out healthy grass, and causing it to turn brown, it does not have to die. The hot temperatures and lack of moisture means your lawn isn't getting what it needs to thrive. But green grass is possible with Endurant. And health is possible with at least minimal water and proper nutrition.

Watering During Drought to Overcome Summer Lawn Stress

To sustain a drought-dormant lawn and avoid killing the grass, apply ½ inch of water every two or three weeks during the drought. The grass will remain brown, but alive. So, you can apply Endurant Turf Colorants and get the best of both worlds.

Conserve water using Endurant Turf Colorants while still maintaining green grass that is alive!

If water availability improves, apply 1 inch of water every week, which generally may require two hours of sprinkler use. Or, simply keep grass green with Endurant during that time, and when temperatures drop and rain resumes, the grass will turn green again on its own. If Endurant is applied, you may see the color continue to deepen with Endurant plus the natural return of chlorophyll in the leaf blade.

How to Revive Brown Grass: More Tips for Overcoming Summer Lawn Stress

Naturally, rain will revive a brown lawn. However, if rainfall is insufficient, watering the lawn deeply once a week will help your lawn to spring back to green. During times of drought and water restrictions, that may not be possible. So, instead, strive to keep the grass alive during the summer heat, drought and stress. And, use Endurant Turf Colorants to green it up.

Dead Grass Versus Dormant Grass

Watering will help dormant grass become green again, as will Endurant Turf Colorants. However, water will not help dead grass to become green. Dead grass will remain brown, except for if treated with Endurant Turf Colorants, seeded or sodded. If possible, prevent death of grass and use Endurant for colorant.

Fertilizer and Burning the Lawn: FertaFlow for Low Nitrogen Nutrition

It may be tempting to use fertilizer to help revive dried-up grass. However, if grass is brown because of anything other than lack of nutrients, then fertilizer can make it worse. If the grass is brown due to reasons such as heat sensitivity, a freeze, drought, being unwatered or if it is stressed because of a pest or disease, then fertilizing will not help.

Whereas nitrogen-rich fertilizers are appropriate for the early springtime green-up and growth, they further stress lawns in the summer. Furthermore, nitrogen-rich fertilizer can even cause burns. Therefore, low-nitrogen fertilizer, such as FertaFlow, is a great option for summer lawns.

FertaFlow is organic, OMRI listed fish fertilizer. It is unique in that it offers the best available nutrition in a fish fertilizer. Unlike an emulsion, it's not made of left over, high-heat treated fish. Instead, FertaFlow is whole fish and cold pressed. This retains the nutrition and makes it a healthy, sustainable, slow-release offering of nutrition in soil for lawn and plant health.

So, fertilizing at the right time with a higher nitrogen fertilizer can make your grass more heat- and drought-resistant. However, if you apply too much, or too late in the heat of summer, you risk burning the lawn.

Bad news: If the grass is totally dead due to drought, there's no way to bring it back. So, let's avoid letting it die. Watering just enough to keep it alive, if possible. Applying Endurant Turf Colorants for color. And, use FertaFlow for lower nitrogen fertilizer, if needed.

Reviving brown lawns that are simply dormant usually occurs within three to four weeks of regular irrigation or rain.

Relieve the Stress with an Easy List

Drought, lack of watering and unbearable heat can wreak havoc on turfgrass. Here are 12 tips to reducing summer stress in your lawn care.

1. How and When to Mow: Don’t Cut It Close

Don't cut the grass short. Cutting your lawn too short limits its energy for growth. Also, when grass has some height, it develops stronger roots. Deep roots increase drought tolerance. They allow for more support, reaching more water and nutrition. Thus, the grass is more tolerant of stress. A general rule is to not cut more than 1/3 of grass height at a time.

2. Proper Watering and Soil Oxygen with Agriox

Many people still water their lawns after rainfall. In general, grass manages better when soil is on the dry side rather than wet. When soil is consistently wet it can cause many problems. Wet soil deprives plant roots of oxygen and makes them more susceptible to disease. Try to avoid watering daily. Lawns only need 1″ of water per week including rainfall. Try to water deeply and infrequently.

Watering deeply means wetting the entire root zone. Watering infrequently means only watering when the grass is dry. Try to water early in the morning when your lawn can get the full benefit of hydration before the sun dries it out by mid-day. Watering in the evening leaves the water standing overnight with nothing to dry it up which can lead to mold and fungus.

Use Agriox to easily add oxygen to anaerobic soil. Agriox is time released, only adding oxygen when it is needed in soil.

3. Wetting Agent, Soil Surfactants and Soil Penetrants for Conserving Water

Wetting agents, soil surfactants and soil penetrants all assist with optimal use of the water available. A soil penetrant will get the water dispersed into the soil, breaking the surface tension. This surface tension is sometimes easy to see in a potted plant when the water sits on the top of the soil and then runs down the side of the pot and out the bottom. This happens in lawns as well. Penterra is the fastest acting soil penetrant for getting water moving through soil quickly. Duration is a slightly more economical alternative and does not need to be watered in. Penterra must be watered in. Explore your options for your conditions on

4. Humates, Humic Acid and Organic Matter for Proper Water Retention

Building soil structure with organic matter improves drought tolerance. One way to easily add humates and get the benefits of a soil surfactant above is using Humawet. Humawet will improve water dispersion and retention in soil plus has the added benefits of humates. These benefits include improving nutrient uptake and overall soil and plant hardiness. SoilPlex is an ORMI listed soil conditioner for even more humic and fulvic acid, providing a carbon source for organically improving soil health. SoilPlex optimizes plants uptake of water and nutrition.

5. Don’t Mow In A Drought

Avoid mowing during the stress of a drought. During a drought, try to mow soon after a rainfall, watering or irrigation. However, resist mowing while the grass is still wet.

6. Sharpen Mower Blades

Prevent further stressing grass with dull lawnmower blades. When grass is cut with sharp mower blades, it heals much faster. Mowing with dull blades actually tears the plant tissue rather than cutting it, causing stress and damage to grass. This may also lead to browning grass, brown tips and more disease.

Best of all, use a mulching mower so clippings can be returned to your lawn. Thus, the clippings act as a slow-release fertilizer as they decompose. (SoilPlex has similar effects, like a bottle of liquid organic compost.)

8. Avoid Fertilizer or Use Low Nitrogen Fertilizer in High Heat Conditions

Although fertilizing your lawn might seem like a good idea, it is actually best to avoid it during the hot summer months. Fertilizer causes more stress on your already taxed lawn and can even cause burning. It’s best to fertilize in the fall as part of your winter lawn prep or to have fertilizer in spring.

But, if nutrition is needed because the lawn was not given any nutrition or compost or amendment, then, use a low-nitrogen fertilizer. FertaFlow is OMRI listed organic fish fertilizer ideal for summer use if nutrition is needed.

9. Avoid Wear and Tear of Traffic

Foot traffic or any traffic on already stressed grass can further the damage. Try to avoid foot traffic, driving or high pet traffic on your stressed lawn, if possible. You may consider creating a path, such as laying down stepping stones, to avoid walking on your grass.

10. Pest Control

Insects and disease are more prevalent in the summer months. Many are nearly unavoidable. However, fungal diseases, such as mildew and brown patch, may be avoided by not over-watering or watering in the early morning versus at night.

11. Endurant Turf Colorants

Endurant Turf Colorants provide green grass year round no matter the challenges. Choose a color to best coordinate with your grass type.

12. Reviewing the Products That Can Help

A. Soil Surfactants: Choose the best soil surfactant on

B. Humic Acid: Use Humawet for a soil surfactant with some humates or SoilPlex, a soil conditioner with even more humic and fulvic acids that's OMRI listed for organic growing.

C. FertaFlow, OMRI listed cold pressed whole fish fertilizer for organic growing, or other low nitrogen fertilizer, if nutrition is need in high heat.

D. Agriox. Agriox will provide time-released oxygen only when anaerobic conditions occur. Summer and high heat generally leads to low oxygen soils. Call 1-877-ECO-GROW to order as high oxygen contents require special shipping.

E. Endurant Turf Colorants: Endurant lasts up to three months on dormant turf grass. It's easy to apply with a pump sprayer or backpack sprayer. Its lasting nature may be decreased if the grass is growing quickly and the colorant is mowed off. This generally is not the case of drought-stricken dormant brown grass, which is not growing.