What Is It?
Rust is a fungal disease that will attack all species of turfgrass. The environment in which the turf is growing will be influential on the extent of the problem.
Have I Got It?
The early signs of Rust will be yellow lesions that increase in size over a period of time. When the disease is mature the spores break through the weakened outer wall of the affected area and spread to affect other areas. If the Rust attack is serious the turf will appear thin and have a poor visual appearance.
If I Have Got It How Do I Try To Control It?
There are no fungicides recommended for the control of Rust so cultural methods are the course of action.
As always the general health level of the turf is important. Ensure the turf and rootzone have good percolation rates. If the turf has to be irrigated try to apply the water early in the day so the leaves can dry but the rootzone is moist. Ensure mowing is regular and clippings are collected. Airflow and light will help prevent conditions favourable to the disease so try and avoid shade caused by bushes and trees. Ensure the turf has suitable nutrition by using fertilizer formulated with analyses ratios for turfgrass.
How Do I Try To Prevent Re-Occurrence?
The life cycle of the pathogen that causes Rust is complex with five spore stage life cycle. Prevention is best achieved by good maintenance practice. This involves good aeration and control of organic matter at the surface and well timed fertilizer application with a good analysis for turfgrass.