Lawn Is Burned And Dried Up – What To Do?

Last updated on October 23rd, 2023 at 08:32 pm

Periods of heat, especially in the summer, not only cause us humans trouble. The garden also suffers from the heat and the drought often associated with it. And before you know it, the lawn is burnt or dried out. But this is not yet a reason to abandon the lawn, because with a pampering program can save the grass.

Damage pattern

Lawn Is Burned And Dried Up - What To Do?

The main cause of dried up or burned lawn is often a longer period of heat without thunderstorms or rain, because the grass then suffers from a lack of water and dries out. If the grass has turned yellow or brown, dehydration is already well advanced. Therefore, you should pay attention to the first alarm signs of the lawn.

These are:

  • curled grass tips
  • bluish discoloration of the grass blades
  • long visibility of footsteps on the lawn surface

In addition, you should regularly check the edges of the lawn. After all, the first yellow spots often appear on the border with house walls, walls or the terrace. But it is not only the summer heat that causes problems for the lawn. Maintenance errors can also lead to yellow or straw-colored spots.

The most common maintenance mistakes are:

  • incorrect watering
  • Mowing the lawn at midday


Incorrect watering

If the summer is rainy, the grass gets too much water and turns yellow. However, this also occurs if the lawn is watered incorrectly during a hot spell, i.e. gets too much water artificially. In this case, it is better to water less frequently, but thoroughly. The rule of thumb during hot spells is to sprinkle the lawn once or twice a week with about 15 to 20 liters of water per square meter.

Tip: A water meter or rain gauge will help you control the amount of water.

Mowing the lawn at midday

Mowing the lawn on hot days at midday under blazing sunlight is not only a great effort for humans. The blades of grass also have a hard time with it, because when mowing, the blade is cut off, which means an injury for the plant to heal. If the grass is now mowed under a blazing sun, the blade has no chance to seal the cut wound, because the sun’s rays immediately dry out the wound or the blade. The result is brown grass blades or brown tips.

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Our advice: It is best to mow in the morning or evening when the sun has not yet risen or has already set. This gives the lawn time to seal the cut wounds.

Lawn Is Burned And Dried Up - What To Do?

Help measures

Help for the lawn

Grass blades that have dried up or burned remain dried up or burned. In fact, saving the lawn aims to regrow new, fresh, green blades of grass. Therefore, the grass needs special care so that it can recover. This does not require much effort, but a little patience. Thus, you should give the grass two to three weeks for the recovery period before resorting to radical measures.


Water helps against water shortage. However, it only helps if it is delivered in the right amount. An artificial heavy rain does not benefit the grass, even if it is dried up or burned. It is important that the water penetrates deep into the soil, so that the roots can easily absorb the cool wet. Optimal is a water penetration of the soil of at least 20 centimeters.

Tip: The best way to check how many liters you actually need per square meter is to cut out a small piece of turf after watering. This way you can see how deep the water has penetrated the soil.

At what time of day you sprinkle the lawn is debatable. To keep water consumption in check, the morning or evening is certainly the best time of day. However, there is also nothing against watering at midday. It does not harm the grass per se, but a lot of water evaporates during sprinkling, which leads to increased costs.

Lawn Is Burned And Dried Up - What To Do?


Water is one part of the pampering program, giving nutrients is the other. Since dry soil provides almost no nutrients to grass, be sure to fertilize it.

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Tip: Check with your local retailer to find out which fertilizer is best if your lawn is dried out or burned, as not every fertilizer is suitable for this situation.

As with watering, you must also pay attention to the correct dosage when fertilizing. Because “too much” is also here the wrong way. If the soil is overfertilized, even if you mean well, the grass cannot recover. And fresh blades will not grow back either. In addition, if the soil is overfertilized, some varieties may cause the grass to burn. To ensure that the soil is not overfertilized, follow the instructions on the fertilizer package exactly.

Tip: To ensure that fertilizing really helps, i.e. that the fertilizer actually gets into the soil, you should water the lawn after fertilizing or fertilize before watering.

Radical measures

If there is no new green to be discovered on the lawn after fertilizing and watering after two to three weeks, then radical measures can be used to make it green again.


Reseeding is recommended when the lawn is only burned in places. It not only closes the dried out areas, but also serves to keep the spread of weeds to a minimum.

Lawn Is Burned And Dried Up - What To Do?


During dethatching, the dead plants are removed from the soil. If there is still old grass on the surface, it is cut off in advance on the lowest setting of the lawn mower and disposed of in the compost.

For the actual dethatching, proceed as follows:

  • Set the scarifier as low as possible
  • Pull lanes lengthwise and crosswise several times

If the lawn looks like a field, you can stop scarifying. Then proceed as follows.

  • Spread starter fertilizer and lawn mixture evenly over the area
  • If necessary, press the seed into the soil with wooden boards strapped to the feet
  • Cover the area with peat (maximum one centimeter)


Since the seedlings do not form roots in the first month, they must be supplied with water daily. After that, you can reduce the water supply, as the young grass blades can now supply themselves through their roots.

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Tip: After using the starter fertilizer, you should not immediately re-fertilize the lawn, because otherwise the “burnt” problem will reappear.


In addition to proper watering, there are preventative measures you can use to keep your lawn from drying out in the first place.

Lawn Is Burned And Dried Up - What To Do?

Educate lawn

In order for the grass to survive a period of heat or drought well, you can “educate” it. This means that the blades develop long roots. This is because long roots allow the plants to reach deeper soil layers, which supply them with water for longer.

Tip: If the lawn is watered too often, even daily, with only a little water, the roots will remain shallow and the lawn will dry out quickly during heat or drought.

Cut length

Keeping the lawn short is important to many amateur gardeners. However, grass that is cut too short suffers greatly from sunlight in the summer. Therefore, it should not be cut below five inches during the summer months.

Grass mixtures

In regions where rainfall is usually sparse in the summer, drought-tolerant grass mixtures help to avert the most damage.


  • James Jones

    Meet James Jones, a passionate gardening writer whose words bloom with the wisdom of an experienced horticulturist. With a deep-rooted love for all things green, James has dedicated his life to sharing the art and science of gardening with the world. James's words have found their way into countless publications, and his gardening insights have inspired a new generation of green thumbs. His commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship shines through in every article he crafts.

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