The winter months are finally behind us. It is now that time of the year when you should prioritize lawn care and maintenance. If you neglect your lawn during the warm spring season, your landscape could be susceptible to housing pests, growing weeds, and lacking the green color of a lush, healthy lawn. Read on for seven lawn care tips to prepare your backyard for the seasons ahead.
The first thing you need at the onset of spring is to give your lawn a good raking. Raking reduces the chances of decaying, prevents mold growth, breaks up the thatch’s thin patches, and aids in separating the grass shoots, allowing your grass to grow and spread evenly. It also helps clear twigs and dead leaves and prevents pest infestation. Raking in spring can also enable you to identify bumps and ruts in your backyard, allowing you to schedule lawn treatments and overseeding.
With that being said, do not be too eager to rake your lawn. Be sure to give the soil time to dry. This prevents compacting the soil, which could damage the young shoots that could be just beginning to grow. Visit decorhomeideas to learn more about affordable ways to maintain a perfect lawn to boost your home’s curb appeal.
If your backyard’s soil is compacted or has endured a lot of foot traffic, it could be difficult for nutrients, air, and water to reach the grass’s roots. In this case, you should consider aerating your lawn to allow fight compaction. Aeration also promotes water penetration and air circulation, boosting root growth and nutrient absorption.
There are various aeration machine options, including spike aerators and plug aerators. A spike aerator uses solid tines to make tiny holes in the ground.
Plug aerators pull out a core or plug of grass and soil. A plug aerator could also allow the core to decompose on the grass’ top, providing it with more nutrients. Ensure your lawn is fully thawed before aerating to enable aerator tines to perforate the ground to maximum depth. If you aerate when the yard is not fully thawed, the aerating machine will only scratch the surface, resulting in a minimum effect.
Spring is the perfect time to mow your lawn. However, do not mow your backyard when the soil is still wet. Passing a lawn mower on moist grass results in compaction, which prevents air, water, and nutrients from reaching the grassroots.
While you may want to cut the grass short to make your lawn tidy, be careful not to cut it too short. When you mow your grass too short, you expose the soil to direct sunlight, giving weeds a favorable environment to grow. Trimming too short also removes the essential nutrients stored in the leaf blades.
Be sure to only cut the grass’ top parts. This leaves the most significant part of the root system and improves heat tolerance, enabling the rest of the grass to remain lush and healthy. Taller grass also shades the ground, which helps the soil retain moisture more effectively.
You should also consider the recommended height for your grass type before mowing for better results. The following are the ideal tallest heights for different types of grass:
Remember to mow the lawn frequently so that you only remove one-third of the grass while leaving the recommended height. This reduces stress on the grass and allows small clippings to decompose efficiently.
Weeds, like grass, will likely respond to the longer spring days and warmer weather by growing. If left unattended, the weeds will damage your lawn because they compete with blades for essential nutrients, air, and water. Weeds also compromise your lawn’s aesthetic appeal, so you should develop a weed control strategy.
You could pull out weeds such as dandelion by hand, although this is often tedious and ineffective. Alternatively, you could invest in post-emergent herbicides to wipe out unwanted plants that have already taken root.
Leaving your weed control needs to a professional landscaper can also help you eliminate stubborn weeds, such as crabgrass, from your lawn without damaging your backyard.
As the spring season progresses, pests will likely infest your yard, compromising your lawn’s health. These include grubs that burrow through the ground while eating grass roots. Chinch bugs, billbugs, crumbs, cutworms, and sod webworms are also common in spring.
To protect your lawn, consider implementing a pest control strategy if you notice bugs, brown and dead spots, or grass that has been chewed. These are obvious signs of a pest infestation. You could use insecticides sprayed as liquids or scattered granules to eliminate pests. Alternatively, apply pest-killing substances and nematodes like milky spores if you are looking for a natural pest control method.
Heavy foot traffic and winter rains could leave bare patches on your lawn. When left open, these patches could provide an ideal environment for growing weeds, so you should consider reseeding. Overseeding thickens the grass enabling it to return to its primary, lush glory.
Be sure to consider the seed type when overseeding. Different grass types are suited for specific seasons, so check the particular type when buying your blend in warmer spring months.
Plant the grass type you intend to grow when the temperatures are high. This gives the grass adequate time to grow before the summer heat arrives. Use a heat spreader to distribute the seeds on your grass.
After overseeding, fertilize and water the newly-seeded grass to nurture it. You could even add a top dressing to protect and nourish the seeds.
Feeding your lawn early in spring can help create a thick, green, and healthy lawn. It also shields your backyard against heat and drought. However, ensure you choose your fertilizer carefully.
Consider performing a soil test to determine the best fertilizer for your lawn based on the grass type. Alternatively, consult a professional for recommendations on the ideal fertilizer type. If you use the wrong fertilizer, you could damage your backyard.
Make your home stand out this spring by maintaining a perfect lawn. Overseed bare spots, aerate, weed, mow, rake, fertilize, and control pests to keep your yard healthy. You could also hire professional lawn care services to maintain your backyard this spring.