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visible distinction between healthy lawn and chemical burned grass

For every homeowner, a lush green lawn is a sight to behold. However, there might come a time when you look out and notice your once-vibrant grass looking brown and lifeless. It’s easy to panic and wonder, “Is my grass dead?” But before you worry too much, it’s essential to understand that grass can enter a dormant state. Let’s break down the differences between dead and dormant grass, so you know the best approach for your Georgia lawn.

  • Dormant Grass: Grass enters a dormant state to protect itself from extreme conditions like drought or cold temperatures. While it might appear brown and dry, it’s essentially in a deep sleep, conserving energy. The roots remain alive, waiting for favorable conditions to turn green again.
  • Dead Grass: If the grass is dead, it won’t come back to life. The roots and the blades have died. The primary causes can be disease, pests, or prolonged unfavorable conditions without intervention.

The Tug Test

One of the simplest ways to determine if your grass is dormant or dead is the tug test. Grasp a handful of brown grass and pull. If it comes out easily with no resistance and you can see the entire root, it’s likely dead. If it’s hard to pull out, your grass is dormant.

Check the Crown

The crown is the base of the grass where the blade meets the roots. If this part is white or cream-colored and firm to the touch, your grass is in a dormant state. If the crown is brown and brittle, it’s an indication that the grass might be dead.

Watering Patterns

If you’ve been experiencing a dry spell in Georgia, your lawn might go dormant as a protective measure. Try watering it deeply and consistently for a week and observe any green shoots. If there’s a sign of life, your grass was dormant. If not, you might be dealing with a dead lawn.

Consistency Across the Lawn

Dormant grass usually presents uniformly across the entire yard. If you notice random patches of brown, it’s more likely to be a disease or pest issue, suggesting the grass might be dead.

Time of Year

In Georgia, different grass types go dormant during various seasons. Warm-season grasses like Bermuda may turn brown during cooler months, while cool-season grasses like Fescue might brown during hot, dry summer months.

What To Do Next?

Here are some things you can do based on your findings:

  • For Dormant Grass: Maintain regular watering and mowing schedules. Limit foot traffic to prevent further stress. Once the conditions are right, your lawn should bounce back.
  • For Dead Grass: Consider seeking professional landscaping help. Mobile Joe’s Landscaping can assess the damage, determine the cause, and provide solutions, whether it’s reseeding patches or suggesting treatments.

Understanding your lawn’s state is crucial to providing the care it needs. A dormant lawn will recover, while a dead lawn might require more intervention. At Mobile Joe’s Landscaping, we’re here to guide you through every lawn challenge, ensuring you have a vibrant, green space to enjoy throughout the year. If you’re uncertain about your lawn’s state, don’t hesitate to reach out to our experts in Georgia.

Posted on behalf of Mobile Joe’s Landscaping

12460 Crabapple Rd. Suite 202 - 407
Alpharetta, GA 30004

Phone: (770) 360-5604


Mon. - Fri. 8:30 AM – 7:00 PM

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Our Client Reviews

Mobile Joe’s Landscaping

4.7 / 5.0

Based on 6 reviews

Bill O.

Joe Archer has built a great family business by treating his customer very well. They do a great job, are consistent, are reliable and are friendly. When we've had big family events, Joe takes as much pride in how our yard will look as we do...came by twice a week before a wedding to make sure things looked tops. Uses reel mowers, not rotary, to have the most even look. Use Mobile Joe!!!!

Michael DePadro

I have known Joe for over 10 years. In the past 10 years Joe has completed 3 large landscaping projects for us. My wife and I would never consider using anyone else as Joe does excellent work is dependable and is easily reached if you need to call him for anything. We can highly recommend Joe for any landscape design project or for excellent on going lawn care. Joe's team uses reel mowers so your lawn looks like a golf course fairway when his team is taking care of your lawn maintenance. I have recommended Joe to several friends who have used Joe for small landscape projects and for landscape projects that went into the six figure range. Everyone that I have referred to Joe has been very pleased with his work so give him a call if you are looking for a dependable landscaper.

David Borel

I was interviewing and getting proposals from landscaping companies for a full front yard renovation at my home. Joe by far seemed the most knowledgeable and experienced of the companies I spoke with - and the friendliest. He laid out different options to meet my budget. His prices were great as well. His team did a great job, showed up on time, and cleaned up where you could not even tell they were there - other than a complete beatiful new front yard landscape with stone walls, new plantings, grass, and trees. Looks awesome! Thanks Mobile Joe!

Mark French

Mobile Joe's Landscaping has taken care of all my landscaping needs for many years - and I highly recommend Joe and his team! Mobile Joe's has designed and implemented various landscape install projects as well as performed all the maintenance at each of the three homes I've owned in north Fulton beginning in the early 1990s. I have no doubt that Joe's expertise in both hardscape and softscape has added significant value to my properties and I'm extremely appreciative for all the attention to detail and great execution that Mobile Joe's Landscaping is known for here in the Roswell / Alpharetta area. These guys truly care about meeting and exceeding customer expectation!

Dona Owenby Ellis

Most fantastic Landscapers ever! Knows everything and can do anything! Very reliable, honest and hard working - great management and crews!

Ann Adcox Gazell

Mobile Joe exceeded our expectations and our vision. Love this man!! His team was so thorough. The attention to detail was phenomenal. Can't wait to hire him for another project.

logo Mobile Joe’s Landscaping Alpharetta, GA

Mobile Joe’s Landscaping

12460 Crabapple Rd. Suite 202 - 407
Alpharetta, GA 30004

(770) 360-5604

Opening hours:

Mon. - Fri. 8:30 AM – 7:00 PM