For new homeowners, the importance of lawn care can easily be overlooked until the unfortunate moment when your grass turns to a lovely shade of brown! With my beginner’s guide on how to give your lawn what it needs, not only will your lawn be green- but your neighbors will be green with jealously. And let’s just say that you will be able to avoid the judgmental stares from your neighbors all summer.
Hydrate your Lawn
Just like you, you’re going to have to keep your lawn hydrated, especially during the Summer. Having a proper sprinkler system is key to keeping your lawn healthy. According to Home Depot, lawns need about one inch of water per week, either from irrigation or rain. If the house you bought has a sprinkler system in place, check to make sure the sprinklers are in working order by turning the system on and looking for area where water is not released. Fortunately most systems are designed to be easily replaced.
The right time to water your lawn is the morning. To reduce water loss, due to evaporation, set your sprinkler timer between 4 A.M. and 9 A.M. You should avoid nighttime watering because the water will remain stagnant and not nourish the grass properly.
This one may seem like a no-brainer, but how you mow your lawn has a significant effect on its health and appearance. Mow your lawn as needed – but use the one-third rule, meaning, never remove more than one-third of the leaf blade while mowing the lawn. Additionally, Home Depot suggests running the lawn mower in a different direction every time so you don’t damage the lawn.
When to mow: It’s common for homeowners to develop a routine of mowing their lawn on the weekends and putting their lawn care on a seven-day mowing schedule. This routine may work for most of the year, however, in the spring during the lawn’s peak growing time, mowing may be necessary every four or five days.
Feeding your Lawn
Fertilizer is food for your lawn, so make sure you are giving your lawn the nutrients it needs. Grass needs to be fed when it is actively growing. Make sure that the fertilizer you’re using contains a large percentage of slow-release nitrogen and micro nutrients to give your lawn the proper care. Don’t overdo the fertilizer! This can dry out your lawn or cause thatch to develop (a layer of dead grass).
The right time to fertilize: In the Northern USA: During the fall and spring. Southern USA: During the spring and summer.
Protecting your Lawn
Weeds are your lawn’s worst enemy. Not only are weeds strong to deplete the soil of valuable nutrients and moisture that would otherwise be available to your grass, but also are unsightly to look at! Using weed preventers early in the growing season can avoid the issue altogether. Weed preventers (pre-emergent herbicides) control weeds by stopping their seeds from germinating.
When should you use?: Apply weed preventers before growing season.
When your grass is the greenest in the neighborhood, don’t say I told you so. Also, if you want to know more about lawn care, read our other blog on why you should also use Epsom salt on your lawn!
Photo via: pixabay.com