What Is Snow Mold?

Yes, snow mold is a real thing.

It may not be what you are picturing in your mind. Visions of green snow or odd growths appearing on your snowman would be far from the truth.

Snow mold is a lawn disease which shows up when an area of turf remains too wet, for too long, during colder months. Do you find yourself asking "What does it look like?" or "How can I prevent snow mold?" Well, we answer these questions and more below.

Why does snow mold happen?

The most favorable condition for snow mold is a Snow Moldcold damp spot underneath snow or leaves for a period longer than 40 days. When the snow on your lawn begins to melt and as the daytime temperature reaches between 30°F and 45°F, snow mold can begin to spread rapidly. Conditions worsen in areas where moisture is abundant, such as protected, shady, depressed areas.

What does snow mold look like?

Snow mold will look like spots of color on your lawn which can begin as yellow-green and change to grey, white, or even pink. As the mold spreads, the outer rim of the circle will begin to turn grey to rusty pink and even run into other circles, forming a larger affected area.

How to prevent snow mold:

  1. Rake leaves in the fall and mow the grass before it snows. Leaves and tall grass act as a layer of insulation, creating an ideal breeding ground for snow mold.
  2. Introduce disease resistant grass types to your lawn when seeding.
  3. Use a slow release organic-based fertilizer when it gets closer to winter. Fertilizers with lower levels of nitrogen are best because they won’t promote as much top growth.
  4. Have your lawn care technician take a soil sample or check your current sample results. A neutral to slightly acidic soil is ideal to minimize snow mold, so an adjustment to the pH level of the soil may be needed.
  5. Improve air circulation over the turf by pruning trees and ornamentals.
  6. Aerate the lawn in fall to reduce thatch and minimize the insulating layer of dead grass.
  7. Prevent excess water from sitting on the lawn through proper grading and drainage.

If your lawn already shows signs of snow mold, don’t despair. It will likely go away on its own when temperatures increase. This spring, rake out any dead grass and ask your lawn care technician to re-seed your lawn or repair bare spots when the time is appropriate. Be sure to follow the prevention tips above for next year as well.

If you have any further questions feel free to contact us; we’re always happy to help!

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For over 22 years, NaturaLawn of America has been creating naturally beautiful lawns that are safer for you, your family, pets and the environment.  Of course our satisfied customers say its best!
 
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NaturaLawn of America has cared for my lawns now for 10 years (2 houses) and I am completely satisfied with your company.  My service technician is friendly, caring and knowledgeable.  I’m happy with the results, how you care for my lawn and the prices you charge – happy enough that I recommend you to others and I tear up ads from competitors without even reading them.
 
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Anne Bullitt – Newark, DE

I’m just dropping you a note to let you know that we are very pleased with your lawn service, the way we are treated and the beautification of our lawn.  Many families have seen our lawn and are very impressed by the way it looks.  They are even more impressed that you are an organic-based company and use 85% less chemicals and pesticides.  We have referred many of our friends and neighbors and will continue to refer people as the opportunity arises.

Jack & Sherrie Decker – Plainview, MN

Our lawn is beautiful.  Thank you for the great results AND for protecting my family and the environment from unnecessary chemicals and pesticides.  It’s nice to have a lawn care company that is concerned about my lawn, my family and the environment.  When people are looking for a healthy, nice lawn, friendly service AND a safer lawn care option, I highly recommend they call NaturaLawn of America.

Pete Plimmer – Wilmington, DE

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Steve Pfannenstein – Rockville, MN

I wanted to write and let you know how pleased I am with NaturaLawn of America.  I had never used a lawn service before.  I’m against putting more chemicals into the environment, so I decided to see what you could do organically.  My lawn was 1 ½ years old – builder grade seed on builder soil! It was a lawn in need of some help, but I didn’t know how wonderful it could look.
 
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