This summer, the kids have been out of school and the weekends have been full of backyard barbeques. Summer lawn stress is wreaking havoc on our yards. Give your lawn a boost this fall to ensure it’s healthy next spring. Luckily, here at Colonial Lawn & Garden, we have the lawn renovation guide that you need.
The most obvious source of summer stress on your lawn is the sun. Prolonged stress leaves your grass susceptible to disease, fungus, and pests. Lawn symptoms of drought stress during dry weather include: grass turning brown or wilting and curling leaves. To check if your area is in a drought, use this drought monitor.
To help a lawn that’s suffering from drought, use proper irrigation techniques. Check that all the zones in your irrigation system are functioning properly and make adjustments if needed. The correct amount of water that a lawn needs is about one inch per week.
Watering early in the day allows the water to reach deep into the soil before it’s evaporated away by the scorching sun. To keep track of how much water your lawn gets from rain, buy a rain gauge. This’ll help conserve water, saving you from overwatering your grass or wasting water.
A clever way to aid your lawn’s moisture retention is to raise the deck of your lawnmower to its highest setting. Tall grass means deeper root growth, making your yard more drought-tolerant. The tall grass provides shade for the soil, allowing more water retention. Leaving your grass clippings on the grass when you mow your lawn adds water and nutrients back into your turf.
It’s not uncommon to see bare spots in your lawn by the end of summer. Your grass might even start to feel spongy when you walk on it. These are symptoms of compacted soil and excess thatch. Late summer lawn care means addressing these issues before they cause too much damage to your grass.
Thatch is the layer of grass clippings and organic material that sits just above the dirt at the base of your grass blades. It creates a barrier over the surface of your soil. A thin ½ inch layer of thatch can actually benefit your grass. Some of the benefits of thatch include: protection from changing temperatures, moisture retention, and some protection from soil compaction.
A layer of thatch that’s more than one inch thick will cause problems for your lawn. Some of the problems of having too much thatch include: restriction of nutrients and water reaching the grass roots, dry and compacted soil, and more susceptible to diseases and pests. So, how do you dethatch your yard?
A thatching rake works great if you have a small yard. If you’re dethatching larger yards, then it’s better to use a power rake or a power dethatcher. Aeration will also help relieve your lawn of soil compaction and excess thatch. A great time to dethatch your Washington yard is in the late summer and early fall.
Compacted soil is caused by increased vehicle and foot traffic. The soil in your yard becomes hard and compacted, causing many problems to your grass. It’s worse during the summer when people are spending more time on their lawns entertaining, playing, and mowing.
The hard soil cuts off the supply of water, nutrients, and air to your grass roots. It’s essential for these components to get to your grass’ root zone otherwise, your grass will suffer. The best course of action when you have soil compaction is core aeration.
Lawn aerators pull up plugs of compacted soil, redistributing them throughout your lawn where they decompose and add vital nutrients back to your grass. This service relieves soil compaction, giving easy access to important nutrients and allowing grass roots to grow deep. The best time to aerate lawns with cool-season grasses like kentucky bluegrass or tall fescue is in the late summer or early fall.
After dethatching and aerating your lawn, the next step in Summer lawn restoration is overseeding. Basically, overseeding is when you spread new grass seed over an existing lawn. The best type of grass to use here in Washington is a mixture of Kentucky bluegrass and fine fescue. Fall is the best time to overseed your Washington lawn.
To finish off your lawn restoration services, consider lawn composting or top dressing. Utilizing a natural, organic top dressing on a recently aerated and overseeded lawn will set your lawn up for success. The organic material is nutrient and microorganism packed, feeding your lawn and smoothing out the ground surface.
As we approach the fall, it’s easy to forget about weed control. Broadleaf weeds like ground ivy, dandelions, and white clover thrive this time of year. Having a broadleaf weed control strategy is important.
The best time to do broadleaf weed control is in the late summer or early fall. At this time of year, the pesky weeds start to store energy in their root systems to prepare for the winter ahead. When you use an herbicide at this time of year the weeds absorb it quickly, making it an efficient time for broadleaf weed control.
Having a lawn care program that includes late summer broadleaf weed control along with a fall fertilization will give your lawn the boost it needs going into the winter. Taking out the weeds now will remove the competition from your lawn. This allows your grass to grow and store all the nutrients it needs to survive the winter and bounce back next spring.
Lawn renovation services and fall lawn care will give your lawn the boost it needs to survive the Washington winter and bounce back in the spring. Plan ahead with services like our lawn care program, aeration services, and irrigation services.