What is fairy ring?

Fairy Ring is one of the most annoying problems in lawns. Fairy Ring is a form of plant life called fungi. The fungus is contained within the soil penetrating as deep as 30cm. The fungus attacks a central point and grows outward. The disease is spread throughout the lawn in the form of spores. These spores are spread by wind, air, water and humans.

The fairy ring disease in a lawn is recognized in early summer by the appearance of circular bands or rings in which the grass is darker green and faster growing than adjacent grass. The bands vary in width from 10-30cm and the rings vary in diameter from 0.9 to 60 metres or more depending on the number of years of undisturbed development. Along the inner margin of such rings the grass soon becomes very much weakened and often dies out temporarily. Consequently, the larger rings usually consist of a dark-green vigorous outer band, which surrounds a band of very weakly coloured grass and then in turn may enclose an area of normal grass in the centre. In small rings the weakened grass may occupy the entire central area.

During periods of wet weather the causal fungus gives rise to fruiting bodies, commonly known as mushrooms and toadstools, along the circumference of the ring.

If you are not certain if you have fairy ring, please call your local Weed Man Professional to have a free healthy lawn analysis to diagnose the disease and inform you of the correct lawn treatment options.

How can fairy ring be treated?

Fairy Ring is a very difficult disease to control. This is due to the fact that the fungus is contained within the soil. The turf can be removed and the underlying soil can be replaced (up to 30cm). This method is very expensive, difficult and not always effective due to re-infestation.

A more practical way for controlling fairy ring is to take a garden fork and poke it into the ring and then water heavily. The water floods the disease and carries it away from the grass plant.

Then top dress and overseed the damaged areas with a more resistant grass variety. The fungus will still be present in the soil so the key will be maintaining a thick healthy lawn that is better able to resist the disease from causing damage. Eliminating the fungus is difficult but with maintaining a thick healthy lawn suppression is practical and effective.

If you have any further questions about fairy ring in your lawn or have any other questions or concerns, please feel free to contact your local Weed Man Professional.