The weather is noticeably cooler and the leaves are starting to fall. Summer is quickly coming to an end and so is lawn maintenance season… right? Not quite! Fall is the perfect time to do some last minute preparations so your yard is ready for spring. By investing a little time before winter sets in, you can guarantee a lush, green lawn once the weather warms up again. Check out these next steps to take care of your lawn this fall.
- Continue To Mow. Your grass will continue to grow until the first hard frost so don’t put away your lawn mower just yet! Continue to cut your grass to a height of 2-1/2 to 3 inches. Leaving your grass any longer than this can cause it to mat which can lead to fungus and mold. Cutting any shorter than this can damage the root system to the point that it can’t tolerate the winter cold and dryness.
- Continue To Water. Even though there is more rain and dew in the fall, it’s usually not enough to keep your plant roots hydrated and healthy. Your grass needs at least an inch of water per week. If you’re not getting that much in rain, etc., keep your sprinklers and irrigation system running until the end of October. Then you can disconnect your hoses and flush your irrigation system so the pipes and spigots don’t freeze over the winter.
- Rake The Leaves. Contrary to popular belief, leaving a layer of leaves over your lawn doesn’t insulate it over the winter. The leaves, in fact, will block light from getting to the grass and trap moisture underneath which can lead to disease and fungus and kill your grass. Blow or rake the leaves as often as you can – or – mow them and reuse the clippings as a nutritious mulch for your yard!
- Aerate The Soil. Aeration should be done regularly – once every couple of years. Aeration prevents the soil from becoming compacted and covered with thatch (a thick layer of roots, stems, and debris). Thatch blocks water, oxygen, and nutrients from reaching the soil. The best practice is to aerate your soil right before you fertilize so the fertilizer goes straight to the plant roots where it is most needed.
- Fertilize. Fertilizing not only protects plant roots from freezing in the winter cold but also gives them a boost of energy so they can bounce back in the spring. It is best to fertilize in 2 steps: Apply a weed and feed first so you can kill weeds and nourish your lawn at the same time; then apply a 2nd feeding about 6 to 8 weeks later to give your lawn the last bit of nutrition it needs to store energy for the spring.
- Overseed Your Lawn. Overseeding is is the planting of grass seed directly into existing turf, without tearing up the turf, or the soil. Overseeding not only fills in thin spots and bare patches but also makes your lawn denser which helps protect against weeds. Fall is the best time for overseeding because the ground is still warm, moisture is plentiful, the nights are cool, and the sun is not as hot during the day.
- Clean Out Your Flower Beds. Fall is the perfect time to clean out your flower beds before spring planting. Clean out the remains of any old annuals, dried stems, and other debris. This not only helps keep destructive pests away but also helps prevent the spread of disease and fungus. Cut perennial stems to within an inch or 2 of the ground.
- Clean Your Tools. Once your fall lawn preparations are complete, it’s time to put your tools away for winter. Make sure to clean them before you store them to prevent rust. Perform any maintenance on your mower after the last cut of your yard before you store it away for winter also.
- Check Your Gutters. Falling leaves are a big culprit of clogged gutters and downspouts. Clean out any leaves and debris from your gutters before winter sets in. Inspect for damage and make sure downspouts are pointed away from foundations. Consider installing gutter guards to eliminate the hassle of cleaning your gutters in the fall.
If the thought of getting all of these chores done before winter sets in seems overwhelming, we can help! Contact Northwest by filling out the form below or giving us a call for a Free Lawn Analysis!
You know how the saying goes … April showers bring May flowers. As we move into April and those heavy spring rains, one thing that takes a beating is your lawn. Grass can’t survive much longer than 4 days once it is underwater. Heavy rains can cause your grass to become waterlogged and flooded. It can also cause erosion of soil. You should take extra caution when taking care of your lawn after rain so you don’t damage it. What should you do to keep your lawn lush and verdant after these heavy spring rains? Check out these 8 tips to care for your lawn this spring.
1. Don’t Mow
Don’t mow a wet lawn. You should wait until your lawn has dried out completely before you cut it. Mowing a wet lawn can not only cause compaction but it can also develop ruts in the soft ground. You should also never use an electric mower on wet or even damp lawns. When your lawn does dry out enough to mow, make sure to use the highest cutting height on your mower blades.
2. Keep Off
Keep off the wet grass. You shouldn’t walk on wet grass if at all possible. This can cause your grass blades to become damaged. You should wait for the water to subside completely before walking. A good rule of thumb is that you should be able to walk on it without leaving wet footprints behind.
3. Take Notes
After a heavy rain you should inspect your lawn for areas where water tends to collect and stand. Once you have identified these areas, you can correct them by leveling out the ground or by improving the drainage to the area.
Your lawn can benefit from aeration after it has been flooded. You can aerate it either manually with a garden fork or with a power aerator.
5. Clean Up The Silt
Silt can be left behind on your lawn after a flood. There is a chance that the silt that is left behind can be contaminated. You should always use caution when working in your yard after a flood by wearing rubber gloves and boots and covering any open wounds. Remove any silt and debris by either raking it up or washing it off with a hose. This allows the ground to breathe and to absorb more sunlight.
6. Remove Moss
Flooding after a heavy rain can cause moss and algae to grow on your lawn. You can rake away the moss and algae but you might need a professional treatment to make sure that it doesn’t grow back.
7. Watch Out For Fairy Rings
Another thing that pops up after a flood is mushrooms. Mushrooms are typically harmless and can be removed by mowing over them. What can be damaging is if the mushrooms are growing in a fairy ring. Fairy rings happen when mushrooms grow in a circle with dark, green grass in the center. The grass in the center of a fairy ring will usually die because it is competing with the mushrooms for water. If you have a fairy ring, remove the mushrooms immediately down to their roots.
Heavy rains can wash away vital nutrients that your lawn needs to thrive. You can replenish these nutrients by fertilizing your lawn. Continue to apply the fertilizer even after your lawn starts to recover so that it can rebuild healthy roots.
If you need help with your lawn this spring consider contacting a lawn care company who can provide you with a lawn care analysis and set you up with a comprehensive lawn maintenance plan.
If you’re a homeowner in the South, you probably take pride in keeping your lawn in pristine and presentable condition. However, you may not know why Americans make it a point to keep the patches of green surrounding their homes in top form. It appears as though lawns are European inventions, as the moist, mild climate supported open, close-cut grasslands. Also, the word lawn is derived from the Middle English launde, which originally referred to a glade and later to stretches of land that imitated the appearance of such glades.
The monthly winner of the best lawn may not know that he’s more than neighborhood royalty. The first lawns were the grasslands around medieval castle in France and Britain, designed to have few trees to give guards a clear view around the castle. As time progressed, the wealthy non-royalty began to adopt the use of lawns around their estates, until eventually lawns lost the connection to wealth. In the mid-19th century, in areas where cities began to grow, the opportunity to have lawns in these areas was relatively unlikely. This is when the park was born, thus becoming a public area of landscaped lawns and other greenery as well as water in the form of fountains, streams, and ponds.
Northwest Exterminating’s Lawn Care Team knows how important lawns are to homeowners. We offer a free analysis of your lawn to develop the best treatment plan before establishing a year-round service to give you the healthiest, greenest lawn possible. We also offer aeration & overseeding, tree & shrub services, and lawn disease control. If you’re interested in these services long onto www.callnorthwest.com/lawn-care to fill schedule a FREE Lawn Analysis.
Do you wish your yard was landscaped by Edward Scissorhands?
You too can make statuesque shrub art by cropping your own bushes into shapes and other fascinating formations.
1- Pick the Right Shrub – Look for a shrub with a certain figure in mind because some hedges have similar features to the makeup of certain objects.
2 – Begin Shape Trimming – When you have an idea of what form you want your hedge trimmed into, you can start creating your work of art. At this phase you want a simple shape and no details. Make little snips instead of deep ones, all throughout the season.
3 – Wire Frames – You can also build any shape you prefer with the aid of galvanized wire. Manipulate the wire into the shape you will be smitten for and anchor it to your yard. Program the shrubs to advance over the wire and inward, cutting it back when needed.
4– Care – Bear in mind that your shrub art will need to be watered and possibly mulched. Cut the space around the hedge to get rid of any weeds, and use pest control if there is a threat.
Some shrubs have sharp thorns and/or sticky sap that can irritate the skin. Remember to wear long-sleeves, gloves and protective eyewear.
To truly enhance your beautiful new lawn, consider our tree and shrub program. Our experts will evaluate the trees and shrubs in and around your yard and develop a program to nourish, strengthen, and defend against diseases like rot and fungus, as well as control insect populations before they are allowed to cause damage. Call us today at 888-466-7849 or fill out the Free Lawn Analysis Form to schedule your Free Lawn Analysis at www.callnorthwest.com!
What kind of shapes or animals would you put in your hedges?