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Help! Our lawn seems to be dying after weed and feed

Brand new here and really hoping someone can help. Our 24 month old (was brand newly laid turf) looks to be dying and it's only gone like this after I applied Westland aftercut weed and feed in the summer (think it was early June for the first treatment, might have been late May, but certainly around then, then the second one was done whenever the box recommended). The change was almost immediate and being a new lawn there weren't many weeds, I mostly wanted it for the "feed". Wish I'd never bothered. Before this the lawn was lush, thick and green. And now it is VERY patchy. 

The lush dark green bits are fab, grow well. However large patches are sparse, paler coloured and barely grown since I applied the weed and feed (literally barely get anything from it when mowing).

I've tried in vain sprinkling grass seed and a thin course of compost last month but it's not had any effect.

I'm gutted because it truly was lovely before I put that wretched stuff down.

I've had many lawns before and used a variety of treatments and never had any problems. I followed the instructions on the box too. 

PS please excuse the pee scorches - new puppy! That's a question for another time though 🤣


  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 20,699
    edited September 2020
    Do you by any chance own a bitch?

    Not in the modern, street parlance sense, you understand.

    A real four legs, woofing, wet nosed, waggy tail type bitch?

    Ah yes, I see you do have a puppy. Female. Well, weed and feed will be that last of your problems then. More like weed and scorched.
    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,289
    If you just want growth during summer, it's better to use something purely for that. A liquid seaweed for example.
    However, was the ground moist when you applied the weed and feed?
    The paler areas could be in a shadier site, and therefore a bit mossy too. Difficult to see from the photo.
    The length you cut it is always relevant too. If some parts are cut a bit short, they could struggle a bit more, unless they're getting plenty of moisture and warmth to grow more evenly. Any unevenness in the ground can highlight that too.  :)

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Haha yes our puppy is a bitch. She's destroying the lawn rapidly but am training her to only go in one spot now 🤞

    But for @Fairygirl no that's the thing, the lawn is sunny from 9am til 6pm and the shorter/paler/barely grown all summer bits are in full sunny spot. 

    There was no moss at all at the time of applying the treatment, and only probs 10 tiny weeds in the whole of the lawn. Yeah the ground was moist on application (as per the instructions on the box). It then was watered in approx 28 hours after application as there was no rain forecast. I'll take a photo from upstairs as you're right, the photo above doesn't do it "justice" 😥

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,289
    How good was the ground when it was laid @sarah_liddell?
    I'm wondering if the underlying soil simply isn't as hearty as the other areas if it's not a shade/moss type of issue. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Ah now @Fairygirl  the ground underneath isn't great (newbuild - lazy builders!) *But* The gardeners we employed to do the lawn for us did rotovate it thoroughly, removed a lot of rubbish and put top soil down too before laying the turf (this would have been about April 2019). Here's a picture from weeks before I applied the weed and feed. (Also before puppy arrived haha) but honestly, it was so lush, green, all even. Not patchy at all. 
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,289
    Yes - always the problem with new builds - a regular thread query/complaint on the forum  :)
    The puppy is a separate issue, but it doesn't explain the difference in the main areas. The only thing I can think of is, last year, so many places had drought conditions - we even had long dry, hot spells here which is unheard of. The coarser grasses sometimes outdo the finer ones, and that's possibly what the darker areas are. The paler ones being the more 'delicate' varieties. It's a bit clearer in your pic from upstairs. With the very dry conditions earlier this year, it may have been a bridge too far for those varieties, allowing the coarser stuff to get a foothold.
    I had a similar problem here last year - as I'd had builders etc, then we had very dry weather last summer. It's not normal to need to water grass here, and mine also has sharp drainage because of our wet climate, and I noticed the same problem. It has recovered without too much input from me other than a feed this spring, and our regular rainfall has returned, but the coarse patches are still evident.
    I'm planning on doing a bit of renovation of mine [which should have happened this year] and I'm intending cutting out the rough bits and reseeding. That may be a possibility for you too, but a bit of a pain. It's the only thing I can think of, but someone else might have a different idea or two. We used to have a regular poster who specialised in lawns, but he hasn't been on for a long while unfortunately. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • JennyJJennyJ DoncasterPosts: 7,053
    It's odd that the dark patches look like little rings. I wonder if it's where the puppy's been and then it's rained and washed in the wee before it burned the grass. I think wee has nitrogen in it? Another possibility is some kind of fairy-ring fungus, but I think you would have noticed the little toadstools. Feed & weed overdose usually makes black patches or strips, but maybe uneven but not heavy treatment could make it look patchy.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,289
    I couldn't think of anything else other than the coarser grass @JennyJ, and only because I had the same kind of thing here. I see what you mean about some of them being rings though. I hadn't noticed that. 

    Other than what I suggested - I'm a bit stumped. Sorry @sarah_liddell:/
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • K67K67 Leicestershire Posts: 2,507
    edited September 2020
    Looking at your second photo of what your lawn did look like I can see the beginnings of uneven colour and lusher patches. Our very dry spring would have made this more evident and as others have said different grasses which take over in different conditions. The shorter you cut grass the shallower the roots grow. The lush rings are a result of the dog, as someone said the nitrogen affects the surrounding grass and the urine burns a patch in the grass. I used to put pieces of sulphur rock in my dogs drinking water and that did help or everytime you let the dog out have a can of water to pour on the spot immediately- not so easy at night though.

    You still have a presentable lawn which should recover over winter
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