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Dichondra - Maintenance Information

 WATERING-Dichondra requires regular watering usually on a twice weekly basis. Water for as long as possible until excessive runoff begins (at least 15 minutes). On slopes and in areas where runoff occurs after a short irrigation period, more frequent waterings will be necessary. Dichondra prefers deep waterings with an opportunity to dry out in between. Do not "baby" your lawn to death with short daily irrigation. Watering dichondra too often can lead to disease problems. Of course, the weather will influence your watering cycle. Watch for a limp or wilted appearance during hot days. These are signs your lawn needs water. Watering too little can also cause problems if your soil is poorly drained (clay) or your water tends to be alkaline. When this is the case do not allow more than the top 2-3 inches of soil to dry out between irrigations, otherwise yellowing and die back can occur due to salt burn. If you have alkaline soil or water, watering dichondra is a balancing act between the diseases of excess water and the salt burn of too little water. Ultimately, under these conditions it might be easier to replace the dichondra with a less maintenance intensive ground cover or turf.

 MOWING-Mowing dichondra is optional and depends on your personal preference. If left unmowed, dichondra will develop an uneven rolling appearance. When mowed it can be kept very even and uniform. Always be careful not to mow off more than 1/3 of the leaves at one time, since plant injury will result. Remove clippings to avoid creating an environment for diseases and insects.

 FERTILIZATION-Fertilize dichondra every two months with Marathon All Season fertilizer. Use the lower regular maintenance rates specified on the bag.

 INSECTS & DISEASES-Dichondra is susceptible to diseases and pests. Most common is Alternaria fungus. This disease is also know as "leaf spot" and starts as a light brown area on the perimeter of the leaf. It soon grows to a larger spot and eventually consumes the whole leaf. Leaf spot spreads very quickly and can involve large areas in a matter of a few days. If leaf spot is suspected, check for over-watering. Fortunately, this disease is relatively easy to control. Spray with fungicide such as Fore or Daconil 2787. The most common pest in dichondra is the fleabeetle. It will cause dead spots that over time grow in size and number. Cut worms will have similar symptoms. Spray using a pesticide such as Spectracide or as recommended by your nurseryman. Always follow label directions carefully. Spraying after irrigation will allow chemicals to act for the longest possible period before they are washed away with the next watering. Repeat spraying every ten days, at least twice, until problem subsides. In order to help prevent problems, it is a good idea to spray with the "cure-all" mixture of fungicide and pesticide on a monthly basis. Check labels or consult your nurseryman for product compatibility. Another option is to hire a monthly lawn care service.

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