As Americans, we absolutely love our lawns. How much? Well, according to a 2005 study sponsored by NASA, the area covered by lawns within the United States is approximately 49,000 square miles. That makes lawns the largest irrigated crop by area in our country, and that’s an awful lot of lawn care.
If you’re reading this, odds are you own your own little piece of those 49,000 miles. It’s yours, and that means you want it to stay healthy and look its best, right? We get that, and we’re here to help. Recently, we offered a few tips to help your lawn reach its full potential, and today, we’re happy to share a few more.
- This will come as no surprise to you, but it’s critically important that you water your lawn. However, over-watering is just as much of a problem as not watering enough. That’s because the roots of the grass need oxygen to survive. During dry seasons, water your lawn 3-5 times weekly. If you have rotating sprinkler heads, water between 12-20 minutes. If your sprinkler heads are stationary, water between 7-12 minutes. If you see water pooling or the soil is sopping wet, cut back on the irrigation a little.
- Fertilizing your lawn is a wise move, and it should ideally be done between 3-5 times yearly. Make sure you follow the directions printed on your bag of fertilizer but don’t use too much since the lawn can become burned. Be sure that, when you’re applying fertilizer, the temperature is below 80 degrees.
- Ever wonder what aeration is? It’s a process where plugs are removed from your lawn, which allows more oxygen to get into the root zone. It also cuts down on compaction and provides an environment for microorganisms to naturally get rid of thatch. Aeration is usually done in spring and fall months. You can rent or buy aerators to do it yourself, or hire a trusted landscaper to handle it.
- Remember we mentioned thatch a moment ago? Thatching is the process of removing thatch, which is a layer of dead grass between the roots and the foliage of grass. If your lawn has a kind of spongy feel, you probably need thatching done.
- Another common problem to contend with is bare patches of grass. Overseeding is a good way to handle this, and it also prevents harmful grass varieties from spreading. A good mixture of seeds is fine fescue and ryegrass, and it should be applied in either fall or spring.
- Topdressing is a term referring to the addition of soil amendments to the surface of your lawn. If poor drainage is an issue, you’ll want a mixture of soil and organic content, like compost. For best results, aerate and overseed ahead of time, then apply at a depth of about ¼ inch. Your landscaper can recommend the ideal product to use for your lawn.
- Moles are common scourges when it comes to lawns. They tunnel several inches below the surface of your lawn, and they can create serious problems. There are numerous pest control companies and methods used to remove them. One of our favorites it sprinkling used kitty litter in and around mole hills. They’ll think a predator is nearby and potentially clear out on their own.