Last Updated on June 15, 2023 by Grow with Bovees
Does your lawn have patches of yellow grass every so often, not sure why and how to make it go back to its luscious green color?
We are here to help you. In this article, we shall discuss all you need to know about how to get burnt grass green again, what may have caused it and what you can do to cure burnt grass.
Before we take you through the why’s and the how’s of burnt grass, let us learn a bit more about what grass burn is and how to identify it.
Identifying Grass Burn
Grass burn is when the blades of your lawn develop discolored tips. This discoloration is often seen as brown grass or yellow grass, and it may look as though the grass leaves have been scorched by a fire or external heat source.
In severe cases of grass burn, entire grass leaves of your lawn will appear discolored, bearing a yellow or brown color. There could be several reasons for this advanced stage of grass burn and finding out the cause is not always easy. It requires you to play detective for a bit.
Causes To Have In Mind
If your green grass leaves develop brown tips, you can be almost certain that it is a leaf burn, possibly caused by too much heat or excess nitrogen.
If you notice tiny straw-colored spots or patches with a surrounding green color, the cause would generally be from dog urine.
If you notice a large brown patch located in only one specific area, investigate your sprinkler or watering system. A lack of water will be the cause of this brown spot. Check to see the moisture of the soil underneath that spot by using a stick or long object of sorts.
A good thing to check when you notice lawn discoloration, is the pH of the soil. If the soil is too acidic, it will cause the grass blades to discolor.
You can easily test the pH of your lawn soil by using an easy-to-use home test kit, which can be purchased at any gardening store. Aim to test the soil underneath the grass patches which appear brown. And keep in mind that large amounts of nitrogen increase pH levels. You can also add lime for lawns if you need to adjust the soil pH.
Having seasonal grass will also affect the color, and in this case, you should not have anything to worry about as this is dormant grass. Cool-season grass will most probably turn brown — becoming dormant grass — during warmer months thanks to the drought and the summer heat, but it should go back to normal in cooler weather.
This is also relevant for warm-season lawns, just the other way around, obviously. The lawn may turn brown during the winter but should recover naturally towards the hot summer months again.
Insects or pests may also cause yellow patches.
Does Fire Burnt Grass Grow Back?
Whether fire burnt grass can grow back depends on the degree of damage. If it is just lightly burnt, then it should recover on its own.
Investigate the roots of the grass patches which have lost their lush green color. Healthy roots are always a good sign, and provide hope that your grass will regrow.
If the roots, however, appear burnt as well — meaning, if they are black or feel mushy to the touch — your grass might be a lost cause.
In this case, you can scrape away the dead and badly burnt sections, and fill the area with some sand or fine topsoil with some grass seed mixed in. This should be kept thoroughly watered, and not allowed to dry out. In a short time, you should see the new grass seeds germinating. Once they are established, you can begin to mow and treat the lawn as normal.
How Long Does It Take For Burnt Grass To Recover?
The period of recovery also depends on how severe the stage of your grass burn is.
In the early stages of a scorched lawn, when only the tips of the grass blades are affected and the root system is still strong and healthy, the recovery time is minimal and revival may take up to a week, maybe less.
In severe cases, where the extent of damage is too much, recovery may take weeks and requires a lot of special care.
One thing to understand, is that the burns will not go away, those parts are permanently damaged. But, as the grass grows, you can mow off the dead tips and your lawn will be as good as new.
How Do I Get My Burnt Grass Green Again?
Now that you are able to identify what caused your lawn to go brown and become patchy, it should be easier for you to turn your burnt grass green again.
Continue on, to get some tips and simple steps on how to turn burnt grass green.
When your lawn is sick or has areas of leaf burn, try not to mow it. Mowing — which is a common mistake — only adds additional pressure to an already fragile lawn. If you really can’t resist mowing your lawn, be sure that the blades of your mower are really sharp. Blunt blades damage the grass even more.
Also, avoid stepping or playing on the grass while it is in recovery.
A burnt grass patch generally needs additional water in order to reach the deep roots and to restore the quantity of water lost. When going about treating lawn burn, deeply water in the mornings when it’s still chilly keeping the ground moist. This way, the heat of the sun does not immediately rob the grass of its water.
You need to water enough, so that it reaches the root system of the grass, which lies about 5-6 inches deep in the ground.
Plant New Grass Seed
If you don’t want to spend loads of time on trying to treat and revive your lawn, simply plant new grass seed. This process is simple.
Simply remove the brown patch and add new grass seed to the fresh soil.
A lot of people don’t know this, but sugar is great to use on grass to keep it green and healthy. It works by enriching the soil, showing great benefit to microbes and other soil garden organisms.
To turn burnt grass green, simply add about 1 lb of sugar to every 300 square feet of lawn. Be sure not to fertilize after adding sugar. They counteract each other, which may hinder your lawn from going green.
Much like planting new seeds, adding new sod is also a great way to get rid of heat-burnt grass. It is actually even easier and more affordable.
Remove the damaged grass and simply add a fresh patch of sod. Take extra care of the fresh sod in order to prevent it from getting burnt as well. Water sod every day.
Be careful when using fertilizers or pesticides. Excessive use of these chemicals is not good and may eradicate microbes and other organisms beneficial to the soil from which your grass grows, causing chemical burn.
Be sure to always follow the instructions that come with fertilizer.
Repair The Entire Lawn
To repair a whole lawn would definitely be the last option to achieve a healthy and green lawn again. And this method would probably only be chosen if you have dead grass.
The process of repairing an entire lawn is quite pricey and time-consuming, and we therefore advise that you only do so if it is absolutely necessary.
Good Drainage System
Drainage systems indirectly play a role in the occurrence of grass burn. With drainage systems that are faulty, your grass may receive inadequate amounts of water — either too little or too much.
A water drainage system which is clogged may cause over hydration. Whereas a malfunction in your drainage system may cause dehydration of certain parts of your lawn.
If the damaged parts of your lawn are drier than the green healthy patches, then your water drainage system is most probably the issue.
This is not an easy fix and hard to tackle alone. Get professionals to have a look and help you put a well-working drainage system in place.
Nitrogen — if used in the correct amount — aids in keeping your grass lawn beautiful and green. Too much, however, can damage it severely and hinder the grass from absorbing essential nutrients.
Spraying too much synthetic fertilizer on your lawn will cause fertilizer burn. If you want to prevent your grass from burning due to an excess amount of synthetic nitrogen, rather make use of compost. Compost contains a smaller amount of nitrogen, making it near impossible to burn your grass, while at the same time feeding your grass with enough fertilizer.
How Long Does It Take Grass To Recover From Fertilizer Burn?
Deeply watering the fertilizer-burned areas on a daily basis is the best solution when wanting to turn your chemically burnt grass green again. Start by watering about 1 inch of water per day and observe how your lawn slowly starts going green again.
The time it takes for your fertilizer-burnt lawn grass to turn green again, ranges from anywhere between 7-14 days.
Animal Or Dog Urine
There are also high amounts of excess nitrogen and salt in animal urine. This means that your turf grass may also change color when your pets urinate on it.
What To Do About Burnt Grass From Dog Urine?
Animal urine burns can be treated in the same way as burns from excess fertilizer. Hose down the patch frequently, using a garden hose, in order to flush away the urine. Deep waterings soak the excess nitrogen further into the soil. Rainwater or wastewater is also great to use straight after your dog has urinated.
Avoid mowing your turf grass until you have about 2-3 inches of fresh growth.
Look for areas where the urine has gone as far as to burn the roots and rake that area, getting rid of all the dead grass blades. Removing the dead grass blades will also help to prevent thatch building up.
Use a rototiller or metal rake to loosen and turn the soil and then throw grass seed over the affected area. Add water every day for roughly one week.
If frequent urination occurs on your lawn, the best thing would be to replace your current lawn with a grass species that is urine-tolerant grass. This type of grass lawn includes perennial ryegrass or fescue, white clover or tall meadow. Another great thing about these types of lawns is that they require less watering and fertilization.
Heat burned grass is caused by high temperatures and hot weather. It stresses your lawn and the grass roots, making it go yellow. Salvaging badly heat burnt grass takes a lot of work. Best is to avoid heat burn.
How To Avoid Dead Grass From Heat Burn
Always mow your lawn before the heat of the day hits high temperatures. The ideal times would be in the morning between 8-10 AM or in the afternoon between 4-6 PM. By mowing less frequently, you can also reduce heat damage to your lawn.
Water your grass in the morning. The fresh morning temperature will decrease water loss due to evaporation from the day’s heat. In order to encourage deep root growth, avoid watering your grass shallowly. Deeper watering your grass is better. The deeper the grass roots grow, the more protected they will be from heat.
Sharp mower blades are essential to not hurt your grass. You want the mower to cleanly cut through the grass blades rather than tearing them off.
Final Thoughts About Burned Grass
There you go, all you need to know about how to get burnt grass green again.
Keeping your lawn lush with green grass while avoiding burnt grass is not the hardest thing to do. A grass lawn simply needs a bit of tender love and care, and it will grow without giving you issues.
Grass lawn adds a lovely decorative feel to every yard and, with the above guide, you should be able to handle it. Don’t be shy, get yourself some lawn seed and let it grow away.
Good luck and happy planting!