Fall is an excellent opportunity to attack hard-to-control perennial broadleaf weeds such as clover, dandelions, ground ivy and wild violets. Because these weeds are perennial, they will be bolstering their reserves in their root systems and crowns that are needed to get them through the winter and growing again next spring.
Cool-season turfgrass benefit from a fall fertilization which should take place early to mid-September. An additional fertilization in mid to late November will help maintain a healthy turf.
Curtis Young and Joe Boggs reported that the annual fall emergence of CRANE FLIES (Tipula spp.; family Tipulidae) is now underway in western and southwest Ohio, respectively. These delicate, long-legged insects look like giant, mutant mosquitoes; a startling image outside of a sci-fi movie.
BYGLers are reporting evidence of white grub activity in lawns around the state. Some of this grub activity is potentially being written off as the result of the relatively dry stretch of weather at least compared to early this year that much of the state is currently experiencing. Seeing brown patches of lawn is not unusual at this time, however, they may need some closer inspection to be sure that it is not grub damage. The other indication that grub problems exist is the activity of skunks and raccoons.
Last week, Eric Barrett with OSU Extension in Mahoning County sent out an email and made some calls about a situation he was seeing and receiving calls about in his county. After mowing lawns, people where noticing that something black was appearing on the mowers.
Curtis Young reported observing clouds of vagabond sod webworm (Agriphila vulgivagella) rising in front of him as he recently walked across his home lawn in northwest Ohio. Last week, Dave Shetlar noted that large numbers of these moths are making their annual appearance in the central part of the state.
The optimum time to seed cool-season turfgrasses for best success is between August 15 and September 15 in central Ohio, a week earlier in northern Ohio, and a week or so later in southern counties.
Joe Rimelspach reported that Ohio had its first confirmed case of gray leaf spot on August 19, 2015 in the Columbus area. This can be a very destructive disease to perennial ryegrass. If this disease is suspected and you would like confirmation, send samples to the OSU Plant and Pest Diagnostic Clinic: http://ppdc.osu.edu/.
Dave Shetlar reported that he's getting calls from concerned homeowners of BLUEWINGED WASPS (Scolia dubia) performing their low-level flight plans over home lawns. This is actually a good thing since the larvae of these blue bombers are the nemesis of white grubs. The wasps may be seen cruising a few inches above the turfgrass, often in loops or a figure-8 pattern, searching for signs of white grubs.