Summer is the time of year when we want our lawn looking its best. Unfortunately, the summer months are also the time your lawn undergoes the most stress. Drought, hot temperatures, and increased traffic from kids and pets combine to increase the wear and tear on your yard. The warmer weather can also lead to an increase in both disease and pest activity in your grass.
Summer lawn care doesn’t have to be a full time job but taking a few steps now can help keep your yard lush and green even during the hottest of days. Here are some lawn care tips you can use to keep your grass summer ready.
- Mow high. Put your mower on a high setting, leaving grass blades about 3 inches tall. This not only provides shade for the root system, allowing for deeper, stronger roots, but it also keeps them covered during high heat.
- Water deeply and regularly. Water consistently during the summer. Rather than shallow watering more often, water deeply once or twice per week. Your yard needs 1 to 1-1/2″ of water each week. If you have an irrigation system, program it appropriately.
- Water early in the day. The best time to water your lawn is between 6:00 and 10:00 am. This gives your grass enough time to dry out during the day, helping to prevent fungal disease. If you have an irrigation system, program it during these hours if possible.
- Maintain your mower. Keeping your mower and other lawn equipment properly maintained is critical to good lawn care. Dull mower blades will tear the blades rather than cut them, leaving them with brown tips. Make sure mower blades are sharpened and also change the oil, filter, and spark plugs as necessary.
- Treat pet spots. When your dog urinates on the lawn it is essentially overfertilizing the area, usually leaving a yellow-brown spot on the grass. If possible, try to rinse the area with water immediately after your dog has done its business. Overseed these areas when appropriate for your grass type to fill in bare or damaged areas.
- Fertilize. The general rule for lawn care is to fertilize every 6 weeks. If this causes your grass to grow too fast, consider using a fertilizer with a lower nitrogen content. Using a mulching mower is also a good option. Mulching mowers naturally fertilize your lawn by recycling the nutrients in grass clippings back into the soil. When fertilizer is applied, make sure it is spread evenly and judiciously.
Lawn care doesn’t have to consume your entire summer. If you need assistance with lawn care at any time during the year, contact your local lawn care company for a free analysis.