Prepare Drought-plagued Lawns and Gardens for Winter
This article was published in the November 2002 issue of West Virginia Farm Bureau News.
Plants suffering from drought stress exhibit a variety of symptoms. They may display decreased growth, wilting, and discoloration. Typically, the pattern of damage occurs from the top of the plant downward and from the outside of the plant inward. Leaves may be misshapen or drop prematurely. Evergreen needles will brown from the tip downward, or may turn yellow or reddish. Lawns may be thinner and, as a result, contain more weeds. Finally, drought-stressed plants are more susceptible to pests and disease due to their decreased resistance.
The dry, hot conditions experienced in late summer and early fall will have both short- and long-term effects on lawns, trees, and shrubs and will influence typical fall and spring lawn and garden tasks.
Minimize fall fertilization and postpone fall aeration to reduce further stress
to your lawn.