As spring approaches and the weather gets warmer the snow will start to melt away and the grass will reappear. At this time you may notice small circular patches of grey, white or pink fuzzy mold on your lawn. The grass may turn yellow or brown and may even appear to be dead. These patches may occasionally form into a pattern over a large area.
This is a very common but fairly harmless turf disease known as Snow Mold.
What is Snow Mold?
Snow Mold occurs when snow accumulates and then remains undisturbed for long periods on wet, unfrozen grass. This condition allows mold to germinate and spread in small patches throughout the lawn. Snow Mold is more prevalent in areas of greater snow accumulation, such as the edges of driveways and walks where snow is piled during shoveling and plowing. It also thrives in low-lying areas where moisture collects, as well as in other areas where snow takes longer to melt.
If you find Snow Mold on your lawn this spring, simply use a leaf rake to go over the affected areas to remove debris and stand the grass up to allow air to circulate. This alone is often enough for the grass to heal. Your first application of lawn fertilizer in the spring will also aid in the recovery process by helping your turf grow and push out the disease. In severe cases where raking and fertilizing fail the area may need to be reseeded.
How can you prevent Snow Mold?
Unfortunately Snow Mold is a fact of life in a climate like ours here in Mid Michigan and is impossible to completely eliminate. Breaking up piles of snow to help them melt in the spring and trying to not pile snow in the same place year after year will help.
However, the best preventative measures for Snow Mold are good general turf management practices throughout the year, especially in the fall before the cold weather comes. These practices are detailed in this article on our website.
If you have a question about Snow Mold, leave a comment below. We can help!
Reder Landscaping has been installing and maintaining the most beautiful lawns for over 45 years. We are THE turf experts for Midland, Saginaw and Bay City. Visit to our website to learn more about our lawn care services, or contact us to speak with one of our lawn care specialists.