Troubleshooting Lawn Problems

Is your lawn having problems and not sure where to start? In this blog, we look at troubleshooting common lawn care problems to help you get your lawn back on track and in good health.

Step 1 – Is your lawn getting the amount of sunlight it needs?

Different types of grasses need different amounts of sunlight to thrive. If your lawn isn’t getting enough sun, it can become thin and sparse, and will eventually die out.

Buffalo grasses have a high shade tolerance needing a minimum of 3-4 hours of direct light or scattered light.

Couch grasses require at least 5-6 hours of direct light.

Kikuyu grasses love full sun areas, needing direct light throughout the whole day.

If your lawn isn’t getting the amount of light it needs, regularly prunes back any trees, bushes, and other foliage. This will help increase sunlight to the lawn. If your lawn is shaded by the house or other structures, choose a shade-tolerant variety that will be suited for your area.

For more information on why your lawn needs sunlight, check out our blog here.

Step 2 – Is your lawn getting affected by wear or a compacted soil base?

Does your lawn get lots of foot traffic either from pets or kids? When the soil base underneath your lawn becomes compacted, it can be difficult for the grass to grow its roots deep into the soil, affecting the lawn.

To help the soil deal with a compacted base, aerate the soil. Aeration is best done with a garden fork or tyne aerator. To aerate your lawn simply insert the fork into the lawn and give it wiggle back and forth. This will help fracture the soil profile, allowing air, nutrients, and water to flow better throughout the soil and allow the grass to grow a deeper root system.

Check out our blog on aeration for more information here.


Step 3 – Are you watering too much or not enough?

When watering an established lawn, it is best to only give it water when it needs it. Usually, you will only need to water when there is not enough rainfall to meet your lawn’s needs. The tell-tale signs your lawn needs water are:

  • If the leaf is wilting or losing colour
  • If your lawn leaves a footprint behind when you walk over it
  • During hot weather, if your lawn is dry and crusty, and taking on a brown colour.

If you do need to water your lawn, it is best to water in the morning before the heat of the day. Avoid afternoon and evening watering as the lawn will sit damp overnight as this can cause fungal diseases to develop.


Step 4 – Does your lawn need fertilising?

Is your lawn lacking the nutrients it needs or is it in need of a boost? If so, a well-rounded fertiliser with a balanced ratio of nutrients may be needed.

For fertilising we recommend using our Lawn Solutions Premium Fertiliser this contains a combination of slow and fast release granules that will give your lawn a quick initial boost and will continue to feed the lawn for up to 12 weeks. This is a well-balanced fertiliser that contains all the essential nutrients your lawn needs to stay healthy and is suitable for all lawn varieties.

lawn fertiliser

Exceed Liquid Fertiliser is also a great option for liquid fertiliser. Exceed will give your lawn a quick boost as it is absorbed by the leaf of the grass.

exceed liquid fertiliser

It is best to apply fertiliser around 2-3 times a year, once in Spring, Summer, and Autumn.

Step 5 – Is your lawn being mown enough?

During the hotter weather, warm-season varieties like couch, buffalo, kikuyu, and zoysia will be growing at a fast rate and will need to be mown more frequently.

For mowing, it is best to ensure you are mowing frequently enough so you remove no more than one-third of the leaf with each pass.

If your lawn has become overgrown or you are wanting to reduce your mowing height, mow a notch or two lower than your preferred mowing height. After this, the lawn won’t look great for the first few weeks, but the lawn will be able to recover and grow back at a lower height. Then on the next mow, you can raise your mower to your preferred mowing height and continue to mow regularly. This is best done when the grass is actively growing in spring and summer and should be avoided in the cooler months.

mowing height

Step 6 – Is your lawn affected by grubs?

Has your lawn become dry and straw-like? Are their brown patches gradually spreading throughout your lawn? Common signs of a grub infestation include brown patches, increased bird activity and a spongy lawn.

If you are unsure if your lawn is affected by grubs, it is best to do a grub test. To do this, mix a bucket of soapy water and pour it over the edge of an affected area. Keep an eye on it and after about 10 minutes or so, usually, if there are grubs there, they will come to the surface. This is best done at dawn or dusk when grubs are most likely to be active.

If your lawn is grub affected, a fast-acting product like Grub Guard or Baythroid Advanced will provide a quick knockdown. A preventative insecticide like Acelepryn GR will help prevent another grub attack from occurring for up to 6 months.

For more information on how to stop grubs in your lawn, check out our blog here

Lawn Grubs

Step 7 – Is rain and humidity affecting your lawn?

Over the last few months, lots of areas across Australia have been facing hot, humid, and rainy conditions. This creates the perfect conditions for lawn diseases to occur.

Here’s what to do if your lawn has been affected by the disease:

  • Stop additional irrigation and only water if your lawn needs it. This will allow the lawn to dry out.
  • Give the area a good aerate with a garden fork. This will help drain away any excess moisture in the soil profile.
  • If the lawn is still showing disease after this, you can look at applying a fungicide like Mancozeb to help clear it up.

Please check out our blog on lawn diseases for more information here.

Step 8 – Do you have the best-suited type of lawn?

In certain situations, different lawn types are better suited for different areas.

If your area receives a lot of shade, a shade-tolerant variety like Sir Walter DNA Certified Buffalo (which needs as little as 3-4 hours of direct sunlight per day) is an ideal choice.

If your lawn is going to be getting a lot of traffic from pets and kids, choose grass with a high wear tolerance like TifTuf Hybrid Bermuda or Sir Walter DNA Certified Buffalo.

If you are after a high-end manicured look a fantastic grass to look at is Sir Grange Zoysia.

For more specific advice on choosing the best turf variety for your home and family, have a chat with


As always, if you have any more questions please don’t hesitate to contact us for free expert advice on 1800ALLTURF (1800255873) or 07 5543 8304.

Seage Weeds

Sedge weeds like Nutgrass are some of the worst weeds when it comes to their ability to infiltrate your lawn.

They are highly invasive and very difficult to get rid of, but there is a product you can use to selectively treat them on your lawn.

Sedges are part of the Cyperus genus which includes about 700 types of sedges. Sedges have triangular cross-sections and spirally arranged leaves in 3 vertical rows along the stem. A common factor in areas where these weeds tend to occur is poor soil.

For this article, we are going to focus on two in particular that are commonly found in Australian lawns, Nutgrass and Mullumbimby Couch.


Botanical name: Cyperus Esculentus


  • Nutgrass gets its name from the nut-like tubers found on the roots (rhizomes) of the plant.
  • It is identifiable as it is usually a lighter green than the rest of your lawn and tends to grow taller.
  • Nutgrass has 3 blades that shoot up from the stem and has a triangular stem rather than a circular stem like most grasses.

nut grass

Mullumbimby Couch

Botanical name: Cyperus brevifolius


  • A perennial mat-forming, grass-like sedge up to 15cm high with dark green, glossy, strap-like leaves.
  • Possesses tough long, rhizomes that are red to purple in colour.
  • Grows best in areas of excessive soil moisture and humidity and can be difficult to control due to a strong network of rhizomes from which individual plants can regenerate.

mullumbimby couch


Nutgrass and Mullumbimby Couch are incredibly difficult to eradicate so it is best you act quickly before they spread and become almost impossible to remove.

You can remove them by digging them out with a small spade. But you have to be extremely diligent with this to ensure there are no roots or bulbs left in the soil as they will reappear if left behind.

Sedge Post-Emergent Herbicides

If there is a large amount of Nutgrass or Mullumbimby Couch in your lawn, you will need to treat it with a selective herbicide such as Lawn Solutions Sedge Control or Amgrow Sedgehammer.

sedge control

Another herbicide option is Paspalum, Nutgrass and Clover Selective Weed Killer, but you can only use it to spot spray buffalo and kikuyu turf varieties as it will harm your lawn as well. It is safe to cover spray-on Couch (excluding QLD Blue Couch), Bent and Fescue turf varieties.

If you don’t treat these weeds, they will continue to multiply and infest your whole lawn, so it’s definitely worth doing in order to save your lawn from continued infestation.

Remember to always follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the pack when using herbicides. These chemicals are generally on the expensive side, but you only need a very small quantity to treat the affected area. Be aware that repeated applications may also be required.


As always, if you have any more questions please don’t hesitate to contact us for free expert advice on 1800ALLTURF (1800255873) or 07 5543 8304.

Helping Your Lawn Recover After Flooding

Tips, Trick And Advice

The recent rains experienced in many areas of the country have caused an extensive amount of damage to homes, businesses and to our outside living spaces.

The most important thing is the health of your families and supporting our communities, so stay safe and we wish everyone the best in the weeks ahead.

The biggest challenges faced during these times for lawns is the combination of waterlogging for extended periods, but in addition to this, once the water levels drop the soil and sediment left behind can smother lawns and are a significant barrier for recovery.

What can you do?

Firstly, make sure your lawn is safe. If rain is still coming down excessively and flowing water is still present, please wait. Make sure all hazards have been identified and addressed so you do not put yourself in harms way.

Facilitate water absorption and the draining away of excess water as best you can, as soon as possible and when safe to do so.

The best thing is for the rain to stop and for the lawn’s moisture level to return to a manageable level. Sunshine is the biggest influence on this, but you can aerate with a garden fork after a few days, divert water away from the lawn where possible and remove all debris that you can that could restrict direct sunlight to the grass.

Aeration is of particular importance for alleviating the moisture and allowing oxygen down into the waterlogged roots of the lawn. You can read more information about aeration here

We have seen in some lawns a lot of mud and river silt left behind smothering grass once waters have receded. Remove what you can by hand and make sure you are wearing gloves. Although more water sounds counterintuitive, initially it can be a good thing to try and use a hose with high pressure to blast as much of this into or off the lawn, so the grass blades are unobstructed.

Another tip for removing any mud/silt/debris easily is using an old rotary mower with a catcher if you have one, as these are great at picking up debris on a lawn.

If moss or algae are present this too will need addressing, you can find more information on treating moss in our blog here

Initially we would advise not to use any fertilisers, topdressing, or other amendments until you are certain the worst of the rain has passed, the lawn is drying out and you are seeing signs of growth. You don’t want to run the risk of wasting money on product that’s going to get washed away or could do more harm than good if likely to stress an already unhealthy lawn. You can however, hand weed, or spot treat any weeds that have popped up, as it is likely weeds will have infiltrated and it’s going to be important to address this so that they don’t get out of control.

When there is excessive moisture combined with humidity, it is common for turf disease to develop. Once the conditions that are causing the disease to develop are gone, your lawn in many cases should recover on its own. Aeration as mentioned above will significantly help with this, but if disease symptoms persist, you may need to look at doing a  to help improve turf grass health moving forwards.

If you notice the lawn is showing signs of being hydrophobic where the water is being repelled by the soil and pooling rather than absorbing quickly, then a wetting agent application will help with this. A product like Wettasoil or Lawn Soaker is ideal.

As soon as it is dry enough to do so without making much of a mess, mow the lawn at your normal mowing height. If the lawn has been left for an extended period and has some length to it, a reset may be required to bring the stem of the grass down to a lower height. This will involve taking the mower down a notch or two lower than normal (lightly scalping) before bringing the mower back up to the normal height. Getting back into regular mowing as soon as possible will be a big part in promoting healthy lateral growth for recovery. Dethatching or scarifying to remove any loose thatch or debris within the profile that has developed before or during the flooding is also going to aid significantly in recovery.

Once the lawn is showing significant signs of recovery, you can fertilise the lawn and target any weeds that have washed in more aggressively. It can be a really good time to also apply a pre-emergent herbicide like Oxafert (3kg) or Oxa-Pro (20kg) that can help to prevent the emergence of some of the weed seeds that have likely been washed in.


We hope this information is helpful. There are no easy solutions, unfortunately, but if you address the things mentioned above it will go a long way to speeding up the recovery process.

As always, if you have any more questions please don’t hesitate to contact us for free expert advice on 1800ALLTURF (1800255873) or 07 5543 8304.

How to Rid Your Lawn of Moss

Tips, Tricks And Advice

Moss becomes most prevalent in Winter when there is additional moisture around and a lack of warmth to dry out surfaces.

What is Moss?

Mosses are small green non-vascular plants that grow in clumps. They are generally only a few centimetres tall with extremely thin leaves.

Moss enjoys conditions that are wet, shaded and compacted. It is important to understand that moss itself isn’t the problem, it is the favourable conditions that the moss enjoys growing in. Turf on the other hand generally hates these conditions, so you need to act quick before the moss continues to spread.

How to Remove Moss

If you are already plagued with Moss, then you will need to remove it to enable your lawn to repair and spread back into the affected area.

  • You can do so by physically removing it with a spade or rake, being sure to get underneath it and remove the roots from the ground as you do.
  • Moss Killer usually contains iron sulphate. Iron can be good for your lawn when it is deficient. But Moss doesn’t like it too much, so an application of iron sulphate will usually cause the moss to die off.
  • Mixing water and dish soap and spraying the Moss with it, is also another method often used to kill Moss.

How to Ensure Moss Stays Away

The key is to focus on the cause of the problem so that moss doesn’t keep growing back again.

Aeration – Aerating compacted ground will help the area drain better and allow oxygen and nutrients to the roots of your lawn allowing it to fight back against the Moss.

Improve drainage – If there are substantial drainage issues, you may need to look at putting in a drain or ag pipe to drain the water away and stop it from pooling.

Reduce shade – By reducing the amount of shade where possible, you will help the sun to dry the area out much quicker, which will ensure it doesn’t stay wet for long enough to be favourable for Moss to grow.

Check your soil pH – Make sure the area has a pH level optimum for your grass to grow. You may find an application of lime is required if the soil is too acidic. Moss prefers acidic soils, but it will also grow fine in alkaline soils. Grass prefers a pH somewhere between 6 to 7.5.

After removing the Moss and addressing the causes of the problem, it is a good time to give your lawn a fertilise and encourage your grass to repair.


As always, if you have any more questions please don’t hesitate to contact us for free expert advice on 1800ALLTURF (1800255873) or 07 5543 8304.