WSU Extension


Lawn and Turf
2,4-D damage 
Anthracnose/Basal crown rot 
Brown blight 
Brown patch 
Curvularia blight (Fading out) 
Dog injury 
Dollar spot 
Fairy ring and mushrooms 
Leaf spot 
Microdochium patch (Pink snow mold) 
Necrotic ringspot 
Powdery mildew 
Pythium crown and root rot 
Red thread 
Septoria leaf spot (Tip blight) 
Slime molds 
Take-all patch 
Typhula blight (Gray snow mold) 
Yellow patch 
Chinch bugs 
European Chafer 
European crane fly 
Japanese beetle 
Japanese beetle 
Sod webworm 

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Caption: Basal crown rot
Photo by: R.S. Byther
Lawn and Turf : Anthracnose/Basal crown rot
(revision date: 4/4/2022)

Anthracnose of turfgrass is a fungal disease with two phases. Phase I affects the leaves and is active in the summer. Typical symptoms include yellow to tan or brown lesions on the blades of older leaves and sheaths, followed by small black fungal fruiting bodies on killed tissues. The fruiting bodies are covered with black hairs. The diseased grass appears as blighted or thinned areas a few inches to a foot or more in diameter. Warm, humid summer weather favors spread of the disease, especially on stressed lawns. Phase II occurs in fall and winter on basal portions of the stems. Leaves on affected stems turn yellow to orange-red beginning at the tip. Blighted areas of grass in this instance are typically small, seldom exceeding an inch in diameter. Grass wounded by aeration or other treatment is more susceptible to fall infection. The disease is more severe on bentgrass, annual bluegrass, and red fescues.
Management Options

Non-Chemical Management
  • Provide proper culture. Adequate, balanced fertilization and deep, infrequent watering will help prevent disease. Water in the morning so grass can dry quickly.
  • Remove thatch and aerify lawns as needed to help reduce stress on plants.
  • For more information on proper care of lawns, including mowing heights and fertilizer recommendations, see EB0482E, Home Lawns.
Select non-chemical management options as your first choice!

Chemical Management

Make applications when disease is first noticed. Do not repeatedly apply the same fungicide or fungicides with the same active ingredient as tolerant strains may result. Carefully check product labels.

Listed below are examples of pesticides that are legal in Washington. Always read and follow all label directions.
  • ferti-lome Liquid Systemic Fungicide II R-T-Spray
    Active ingredient: propiconazole  |  EPA reg no: 53883-184-7401
  • Scotts Lawn Fungus Control
    Active ingredient: thiophanate-methyl  |  EPA reg no: 538-88
  • Spectracide IMMUNOX Multi-Purpose Fungicide Spray Conc
    Active ingredient: myclobutanil  |  EPA reg no: 9688-123-8845
  • This list may not include all products registered for this use.

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Caption: Basal crown rot
Photo by: R.S. Byther
Caption: Anthracnose
Photo by: R.S. Byther
Caption: Anthracnose fruiting bodies
Photo by: R.S. Byther
Caption: Anthracnose fruiting bodies
Photo by: C.R. Foss