General Lawn Care Tips
- Aerate at least every other year, if not annually. Core aeration improves the movement of air, water and fertilizer to the roots of your lawn while controlling thatch and reducing soil compaction, resulting in a thicker, healthier root system.
- Overseed areas of the lawn that become thin using a high-quality strain of grass seed matched to the specific environment. Filling in these thin patches will prevent weeds from getting a foothold in your lawn. Introducing new strains of grass seed also helps your lawn stay resistant to disease.
- Maintain your lawn’s thatch level between 1/2 and one inch of thickness. Thatch levels up to one inch in depth help shade your lawn’s roots from the sun and retain moisture for its use.
- Always mow your grass at 3 inches or higher. Since grass roots can only grow as deep as the blade is tall, this practice promotes healthy root system development. It also allows the grass blades to shade their own roots and protect them from the sun.
- The best way to ensure this practice is place your mower on a concrete surface and measure the distance between the mower blade and the ground with a tape measure. Do not rely on the manufacturer’s numbered settings, as these are often not based on actual measurements.
- Mow often to avoid cutting off more that 1/3 of the total length of the grass blades. Removing more than 1/3 of a grass blade stresses the lawn, resulting in yellowing of the grass.
- Sharpen lawn mower blades monthly. Dull blades shred grass, resulting in stress and increasing the lawn’s susceptibility to disease.
- Leave clippings on the lawn when possible. This allows nutrients still stored in the clippings to return to the soil through decomposition, effectively re-fertilizing your lawn. As long as mowing is done properly, this practice will not affect the thatch levels in the lawn.
- During the spring, lawns should receive about 1 to 1-1/2 inches of water per week, either by irrigation or rain. During the hotter summer months, lawns should receive 1-1/2 to 2 inches of water per week, either by irrigation or rain. The easiest way to determine how much water your sprinkler system puts out is to place a container (ie, an ice cream bucket or a coffee can) in the yard while the system is running and see how much water accumulates in a 15 or 30 minute period. Use this information to program the sprinkler system accordingly.
- Watering infrequently (1-2 times per week) and providing one inch of water each time forces grass roots to grow deeper as they follow the moisture levels down into the ground and is the best way to promote a deep, healthy root system.
- The best time to water is early in the morning. This practice prevents evaporation of the water by sunlight and the dispersal of water droplets by wind, but still allows the lawn to dry out before diseases or fungi can develop.
When weather conditions are between 70F-80F, it is recommended 1 1/2″ of water is needed per week to keep your lawn healthy.
When weather conditions are between 80F-90F, it is recommended 2″ of water is needed per week to keep your lawn healthy.
When weather conditions are 90F & above, it is recommended 2 1/2″ of water is needed per week to keep your lawn healthy.