Cornmeal for fungus control

turf_toes(SE Pennsylvania KBG)June 19, 2006

Ok. There's been a lot of debate on the lawn forum about whether cornmeal truly is a cure/preventative for lawn-type fungi.

The proponents point to a study of peanut fungus by Texas A&M. But I recently read an article by a Texas A&M professor who said that corn meal is not effective for lawn disease.

At this point, I'm not sure what to believe. Do you have any opinions on this?

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Trey Rogers
The Yard Doctor

Dear turf toes

Thank you very much for your inquiry. Corn meal as an organic fungus control? Yes I believe it is possible and that both people you are referencing could be right, but only to a point. My experience with most biological type controls is that they can be effective if a) the problem is not too severe, or b) they are put down consistently and persistently at rates that allow total dominance of a landscape. I have not read this particular article, but I will give you an example with corn gluten meal, a well established biological product in the area of preemergent herbicides for crabgrass. The original research articles from the early 1990Âs did indeed show that this product was effective in providing control against crabgrass as long the crabgrass pressure was not to severe (as in the case of most home lawns). If there is a bare ground area with heavy crabgrass seed pressure in the soil, the data showed this product was not as effective as traditional preemergent herbicides. This is the case with many of these biological products. They will perform well under moderate conditions, but not as well under extreme conditions. I suspect that this is the case in the corn meal you are referring and that is why both people are probably correct.

Finally, for fungus control in home lawns, remember this first. Fungus love water and fertilizer and will flourish in warm, wet, damp areas. Do what you can to mitigate these situations first, and your disease issues will be minimized.

Again, thanks for the question and let me know if you have more.


Trey Rogers
The Yard Doctor

    Bookmark   June 21, 2006 at 8:25AM
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lovesroses(z8 AL)

We have had a local problem with brown patch for about three years now, and more seriously, take-all patch. Several golf courses had to be completely re-sodded, and multiple lawns, too, with take-all patch.

The only curative/preventative I have come across and that has been recommended time and again is if you have heavy fungal presence, use the recommended dosage for curative treatement, using granular Daconil in a broadcast spreader, following instructions to get to preventative dosage, if necessary.

I do not recall whether Daconil was the product recently discussed as being taken off the market; it could a completely different product at issue. It was still on the shelves early spring. At any rate, if it is not the product that is being taken off the market, granular Daconil is much more effective for lawns than the liquid base. Feed and Seed-type stores usually carry it. It has proven quite effective.


    Bookmark   June 23, 2006 at 2:51AM
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Where can you buy Horticultural cornmeal in Missouri. Every where I try say that they have never hear of it!

    Bookmark   March 26, 2011 at 12:59PM
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