How to take care of your lawn
Late April-Early May-pretty strange weather, time for a quick lawn blog.
Hail lawn lovers,
At this time of year we are often asked about watering and feeding regimes. The most important thing to do is to water when needed, mow when needed and feed when needed. This sounds unhelpful in some ways, but never believe anyone telling you that they can put together an exact plan for when they will mow, weed, feed etc- it all depends on the weather, your lawn and site (including drainage, shade, irrigation, lawn type and wear), and your cutting and maintenance regime.
Even in hot dry times a lawn will almost always eventually recover without watering (unlike many plants), but if you want a green lawn you will need to water it. Try to water weekly rather than daily, and if you can do this when it is cool you will lose less water to evaporation. New turf is a different kettle of fish and will die without regular watering (it takes a while for the roots to grow into the ground and be resilient enough to survive a drought). You may wish to refer to our general watering guide here.
It is the same with feeding- whilst there are common times to feed and weed, you are best to do so when it needs it. Weed when there are weeds! For feeding, mid Spring is a pretty good bet, using a proprietary feed, applied when the ground is moist or when rain is expected.
If you have bare patches after removing moss or weeds or just sparse areas then overseeding now is a good time… (you can also do in mid Autumn)
- Break up the surface with a fork and rake it to make a reasonably fine surface.
- Sow grass seed at half the recommended rate or, where there are no recommendations, at 10-15g per sq m
- Lightly rake to incorporate the seed into the surface.
- Where birds are a problem, net the area.
- If the weather remains dry for two or three days water gently with a sprinkler.
- Grass should sprout seven to 10 days after sowing.
In heavily used areas, choose a hardwearing utility mix containing ryegrass. Most lawn grasses do not thrive in shade, so for these areas choose a shade-tolerant mix.
If you have questions about your lawn do feel free to contact us here
We will aim to get back to you within 24 hours and will share questions of general appeal on this blog
While we are talking about general questions, I thought I would just run over some tips to remember as you are perhaps at home and giving your lawn a bit more attention than normal!
These are in no particular order but are just the little things that help.
- Never re-fuel anything while still on the lawn, any spillage will kill the grass and undo your hard work.
- When applying any fertiliser or other treatment, doing two applications at ninety degrees to each other at half strength is better than one application at full strength if you make a mistake.
- Always walk on the light stripes, stops your footprints being visible.
- Regularly walk your lawn, this way you can keep an eye out for damage, weeds etc. Don’t rely on mowing for this as you should be concentrating on straight lines.
- Regular brushing is good for covering the point above and grooming your lawn as you go
- Try to cut out weeds with a knife as you find them making sure to get the root out.
- Regular mowing is important, once a week in spring and autumn. In the summer its best not to let the grass get more than half an inch above the desired height so you may find yourself mowing twice a week if necessary.
- Under no circumstances allow anyone to set foot upon your lawn. It is for admiring and no more (!)
- I mean it, absolutely no one who isn’t on gardening business, point out the rule about walking on the light stripes if it can’t be avoided.
- Keep the blades on you mower sharp as a clean cut is best.
- Regular maintenance is better than fixing problems.
That’s all I am going to say for now, I can only show you the door you’re the one that has to walk through it.
April – Spring is in the air, time for a quick lawn blog.
After what has seemed like months of rain or at least every weekend, we have finally had a few days of sunshine. So this got me thinking, why don’t I resurrect my ‘year in the life of your lawn blog’, it’s all good stuff to know as you tend to your lawn and will take you away from the trials of the outside world while you enjoy the peace of your garden.
I’ll start by talking about what you need to be doing now the sun is coming out…
Hail to the turf baby
Here begins our journey, hope your all keeping well and trying to enjoy the forced time in your homes and gardens. With the weather improving I hope you have been getting up to speed on the spring jobs. It’s all gone green and is pushing upwards so that mower should be coming out once a week now and we should be aiming to get the grass height to that desired height of about 20-25mm (3/4 to 1 inch for the old school).
You will also have noticed it’s not just the grass that is growing but those pesky weeds too. Keeping on top of these is a must and with regular mowing and good grass coverage new weeds should struggle to get a foothold.
Something else to keep an eye on is how well your soil retains moisture. A thin layer of thatch will help the soil retain moisture but too much (1 inch/25mm) will reduce water penetration when needed and will then become a thick wet blanket in the autumn. If you think you have too much then aeration will help your lawn until autumn when some heavier scarifying can be done to remove it. Be wary if anyone suggests aerating with hollow tines and thence leaving all the cores from the tines to break down as a top dressing, it will take a long long time for these to break down and when they have, they will leave old seeds from weeds and all manner of rubbish on top of the grass ready to germinate. Anyone suggesting this is an enemy of your lawn and should not be trusted near your hallowed turf. Honestly I bet they’d walk the wrong way up the mowing too.
Ok I’m done for this edition, I hope you all enjoy my warbling and if anyone has a question then by all means send them in.
Till next time, keep it groovy and give me some sugar, baby.
And finally aerate and top dress if needed mixing a little grass seed with the dressing as well. Then once you get round to spring again just continue with routine spring maintenance.
So even though you don’t get the great lawn this year if you do what is needed then next year things should look a lot better than they do now.
That’s it for this week, I’ll be back.