Protecting Your Lawn from Fairy Ring

In Spring on July 22, 2013 at 4:13 pm | Written by green-admin

With all the potential diseases that can develop in lawns throughout the St. Louis area, one of the most difficult to control is fairy ring.  Fairy ring is caused by different types of fungi and it attacks all turf grasses common to Missouri.  A variety of fungi live in the thatch and soil of a lawn all year long and they destroy the turf by feeding on the grass plants.  Fairy ring tends to occur near sources of decaying organic matter, such as a stump or excess thatch, and it is especially prevalent during the season’s dry months and in nutrient-deficient soil.


Fairy ring may take on one of several different appearances.  In order to correctly identify fairy ring in your lawn, it is important to become familiar with all the warning signs.

  • Quick-growing, dark green circles or semi-circles of grass
  • Dark green rings bordered by a thin ring of dying grass
  • Rings of dying grass with a hardened layer of soil
  • Rings of mushrooms

The fungi that causes fairy ring releases nitrogen that causes the rings to have a lush, green appearance.


Most cases of fairy ring are simply nothing more than an aesthetic issue, but further problems can occur and cause damage to the lawn if it is not handled properly.  These problems include:

  • Water repellant soil: a large presence of mycelium fungus can cause the soil to become hydrophobic, making proper irrigation impossible.
  • Enlarged rings: Some rings may spread over 100 feet in diameter and affect large areas of the lawn.
  • Fungi chemical damage: The concentration of chemicals released by the fungi can greatly weaken a lawn.

Preventing and Controlling Fairy Ring:

Fairy ring is an unpleasant and potentially damaging turf disease that can be prevented with these steps:

  • Regularly remove thatch from your lawn because fungus breeds within thick layers of thatch.
  • Heavily water affected areas for two weeks.
  • Regularly fertilize your lawn so that the root system is strong enough to fight off diseases.
  • Make sure to follow proper mowing and watering practices.
  • Set up aeration services with Green T; core aerations remove excess thatch and allow water to more easily reach the root system which helps fight fungal diseases.

It is still possible that the symptoms of fairy ring could persist despite following these preventative actions.  If your lawn has a fairy ring problem, call Green T Lawn Care to control the disease before it causes extensive damage.  Green T offers fungicide treatments as well as aeration services to their customers in St. Louis.

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