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Control of Fairy Rings

There are as many homegrown solutions for fairy ring as there are people having problems with this fungus. The reality is there are no sure fired ways to chemically control a fairy ring. There are no products registered within Canada to control fairy ring. Cultural controls are your best bet when dealing with fairy ring. Cultural controls will not cure your fairy ring problem, they will only assist you in masking the problem within your lawn. The mycelium producing fungi need to exhaust their source of food before a fairy ring will discontinue it's growth.

fairy ring mycelium 



Method #1 "Poke and Soak"

Using a soil probe or similiar tool, poke holes into the fairy ring, approx 2 inches apart until you have opened up a great many areas within the fairy ring. Once this is achieved, soak the ring with soapy water (dish soap is fine) . The soapy water acts as a wetting agent and makes the water "wetter" helping the moisture get deeper into the mycelium layer to get to the turf grass roots. If you can get enough moisture to the root structure of the grass it will continue to live and not die out creating a dead area. This method must be done on a rigid schedule in order to succeed, once a day for 4 to 6 weeks so as you can see it is somewhat labour intensive. Interestingly enough most of the so called "cures" you find at farmers markets and such will sell you a product that uses this method to incorporate their product into the affected area. You can do the same thing without shelling out your hard earned money.

Method # 2  Mower Height

Raising your mower to cut higher will mask the fairy ring. Ensure your mower blade is sharp to give the grass blade a nice clean cut. A dull blade will create a jagged or ragged cut on the blade and can result in more problems for your lawn such as "tip burn"


Method # 3 Regular Fertilization

A good well balanced fertilizer program, generally every 4-6 weeks will give the rest of your lawn a deep green colour, which again will mask the symptoms of the fairy ring by blending it in with the rest of the lawn. Do not over-fertilize the fairy ring area as it is already producing nitrogen as a byproduct of the mycelium feeding on the thatch or organic material within the lawn. If you add additional fertilizer to the fairy ring area you will only increase the speed in which that area will burn out.

Method # 4  Removal of the Ring

This method has worked in the past but usually for a relatively short time. Unless you remove the source of food the ring is feeding on, chances are the fairy ring will return in 4-5 years. It is also essential you remove all of the material containing the mycelium. If this is not done, the ring will re-appear sooner. It is vital to dispose of the material in an area not affected by turf growth.

Remove the ring to a depth of 1 foot below the mycelium layer and wide enough to extend 2 feet on either side of the fairy ring. Replace the soil with new soil and either resod or reseed


Method # 5  Inhibiting Growth

Each fairy ring produces certain chemicals that inhibit the growth of other fungi. You can use this trait to attempt to stop the growth of the fairy ring. Locate a different fairy ring and dig up some of the material from within it. Mix it in a pail with soapy water to create a slurry. Once you have your mixture, poke the original fairy ring several times and introduce the mixture from the second fairy ring into the first. This method will not cure a ring but has shown success in inhibiting further growth.

if you have had success with any of these methods or with a homegrown remedy of your own, please email us at paul@fairyring.ca  and we would be more than happy to post your story to our site



the information given herin is supplied with the understanding that no

discrimination is intended and no endorsement by www.fairyring.ca is implied

any person using products or homegrown remedies listed assumes full responsibilty for their use in accordance with current directions of the manufacturer 

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