Extreme weather can kill your lawn, or leave it vulnerable to insects and blight, if you aren't there to catch warning signs. Billie Lee, a Walker County master gardener in Huntsville, Texas, says that drought conditions can fry the grass, while excessive rain encourages disease. "My neighbors lost their lawn to a fungus called Take-all patch. They came home from a vacation and had to uproot the whole yard and start over."
TOH landscape contractor Roger Cook recommends asking a neighbor to watch out for wilt or brown spots in the lawn and leaving behind the number for your lawn service. "All you can do is depend on your good neighbor, and promise to do the same for him when he goes away," says Roger. "It's a fair trade."