Although the cold of winter has set in and your lawnmower is stored away for the year, don’t relax just yet! Lawn care services don’t end just because the weather has turned cold. While your lawn requires more maintenance in spring, summer, and fall, there are things you can do in the winter months to make sure you have a healthy, green lawn when the weather warms in the spring. Check out these 8 tips for winter lawn care.
1. Clean Up The Yard
Beginning in the fall, clear away any debris that has accumulated in your yard and do periodic sweeps throughout the winter. Early winter is the perfect time to rake up any matted areas as these can lead to old. Raking and mowing the debris in winter also encourages better air flow throughout the grass in your yard to prevent both disease and insect infestation. When new grass starts to grow in the spring, having the debris cleared away will allow them to grow without a struggle.
2. Control The Weeds
Although it’s a little early now, start thinking about how you want to control weeds as winter moves into spring. Pre-emergent crabgrass control should be applied in early spring before the soil temperatures reach 55-60 degrees. Once the temps warm up above 60 degrees, weed seeds have already begun to germinate and the pre-emergent weed control won’t be effective.
3. Core Aerate
Another thing to start thinking about is core aeration which should also be done in late winter/early spring before the soil temperatures warm up above 60 degrees. Once temperatures are above 60 degrees, the voids that are left in your yard from the aeration will only serve as an open invitation for aggressive weed seeds to grow. Core aeration is important because it allows air to reach the root zone faster which leads to new growth and improved root development.
4. Repair Your Lawn
Winter can do a number on your yard with its harsh weather and cold temperatures. When spring comes around, you may need to make some much needed repairs to your lawn. Spring is a great time to reseed any damaged areas that developed over the winter months.
Applying fertilizer in the late winter/early spring can jump start your lawn from its dormant winter state. Fertilizer provides a build up of nutrients that will provide it with the strength it needs to withstand heat stress and drought throughout the warmer summer months.
6. Clear The Clutter
Before winter sets in, clear your lawn of any clutter and do periodic sweeps throughout the winter season. Remove any debris, lawn furniture, logs from around your fire pit, toys, etc. If an object is left on the grass during cold weather or snowfall, it can cause large dead spots on your lawn because of the weight of the object. In spring, the grass in these dead areas will be stunted and thinner than the rest of your yard.
7. Keep Off The Lawn
Try to avoid lawn traffic as much as possible in the winter months; walking on your lawn too much can weaken even the strongest grass, if the same path is walked over too many times. Make use of sidewalks and never allow anyone to park a car or truck on your lawn, as this will leave impressions in the soil and kill grass that’s underneath the tires.
8. Professional Lawn Care Services
If winter lawn care seems like a daunting task, don’t stress! Call a professional lawn care company who can come out and provide you with a free lawn care analysis. The Lawn Care team at Northwest can provide you with expert lawn care services and a customized program that includes lawn fertilization, weed control, lawn pest control, aeration and overseeding, tree and shrub care, and even disease control. Fill out the form below or give us a call to schedule your free lawn care analysis today!
Winter can often be an unpredictable time of year. The harsh weather this season brings can often put your lawn through some extreme and damaging conditions. Although your winter lawn care regimen may not be as long or as involved as it is in the summer season, it is still just as important in helping to maintain a lush, healthy yard year round. What can you do during these cold months to make sure your lawn stays in tiptop shape? Check out these 7 tips for a healthy winter lawn.
Mow In The Fall. Winter lawn care doesn’t just start when winter does. Preparing in the Fall is critical. As the weather cools, continue to mow your yard until the grass stops growing. Gradually lower the height of your mower for the last few turns of the season. Be careful not to cut the grass too short. The shorter grass allows your lawn to winter well without shocking it by cutting it all off at one time. Shorter grass also protects any fragile new growth that may occur at the end of the season. If you leave your grass too long over winter, it invites mice and other burrowing animals to nest during these colder months which can lead to dead spots in your yard come spring.
Aerate Your Yard. Aerate your yard to prevent soil compaction. The small holes you create allow air, water, and vital nutrients to penetrate down to the roots of the grass. This allows the roots to grow deeper and become more resilient. Use a spade to take out spikes of soil across our lawn. If you yard is too large, you can rent a manual or a motorized aerator.
Fertilize Your Yard. Many people don’t think about fertilizing in the winter but this allows your lawn to thrive year round. Apply fertilizer with a spreader and make sure to follow the instructions on the package. Apply only the recommended amount of fertilizer because applying too much can burn your lawn.
Overseed Your Yard. In most parts of the country, lawn grass goes dormant in the winter. In many places, especially in the south, cool-weather seed is overseeded into the lawn to maintain a green lawn year-round. Make sure the seed you purchase says “cool weather” or “cool season” on the package. You can use the same spreader to apply this seed as you did to apply your fertilizer. Try to spread the seed evenly so you don’t get clumps of grass in the spring.
Remove The Weeds. Getting rid of weeds is an important part of winter lawn care. You can spot treat weeds with an herbicide that only kills weeds and not your grass. Weeds are easier to spot in the winter because grass loses its green color this time of year but cool weather weeds do not. If you have too many weeds to spot treat, you can mow your lawn a few times during the winter. Most winter weeds can’t survive repeated mowing and will die off. Make sure to use your bag attachment to catch any seeds from the weeds to avoid recurrence. If weeds are a problem for you in the winter, set yourself a reminder to apply an herbicide in the fall to prevent their growth the following year.
Rake The Leaves. Make sure to rake up any leaves you didn’t get to in the fall. If there is snow on the ground, wait for it to thaw before you rake. Also make sure to rake gently especially if the soil is moist as rakes can easily pull up your grass. Leaves left on the ground over winter can cause mold which can severely damage your lawn.
Clean It Up. Try not to leave any debris, toys, leaves, or even lawn furniture on the lawn during winter. Any of these things can smother your grass and invite insects, mice, and other pests to invade. Try to stay off of frozen lawns as much as possible. Repeated walking, driving, or parking on your grass can kill the grass, leaving bare spots in the spring. Make sure to keep your sidewalks and driveways clear so people won’t be tempted to cut across your lawn.
Atlanta lawn care in the winter months is almost nonexistent. This is the time of year you can sit back, relax, and forget about watering, weeding, and mowing. But don’t get too comfortable. There are things you can do now to ensure a healthy lawn in the Spring…which is just a few weeks away!
If you’ve hired a professional lawn care company, they should already be providing your lawn with what it needs. If you’re doing it yourself, keep reading.
Being good lawn caretakers, you already fertilized your grass last fall or early winter. This is the best time to fertilize, when your lawn has been depleted of essential nutrients from Summer’s hot temperatures. Fertilizing before it gets too chilly will also ensure your lawn remains healthy throughout winter. You want to be sure you’re mowing the grass a little shorter than you would in the summer, too, so it’s prepared for the cold. Then you can put that mower away for a few months. *Sigh of relief*
Stay off! Another important step in winter lawn care is to avoid walking/driving on your lawn as much as possible, and be sure nothing is left on the grass, like toys or debris. This is when grass is most fragile. Constant traffic can cause grass to die in those areas, which means a patchy, uneven lawn in the Spring and Summer.
When temperatures begin to warm up, check on your lawn to be sure it’s looking healthy. If you didn’t properly winterize grass in the fall, you may want to solicit outside help. Contact your local lawn care company and ask for a free lawn analysis, or use the form below. They can tell you what your lawn needs, put you on a schedule, and get your grass back to it’s former green and healthy status fast.