When it comes to your grass, it is the first thing people see when they walk into your yard, the first thing people see when walking past your house and the first impression many people get. If you have beautiful, healthy green grass, the impression many get will be astounding.
For those really wanting that beautiful golf green grass this year, you are in for a shock when you see our spring grass tips. First the bad news: if you neglect spring lawn care, you could end up paying for it the rest of the summer. Now the good news: spring lawn care doesn’t entail nearly the amount of work that you’ll have to invest in mowing alone throughout the summer months.
Spring Grass Care Tips
- Raking will be your first task of spring lawn care. A thatch build-up of more than 1/2 inch is considered excessive.
- Thatch is the reason why it is recommend that, when you rake leaves in the fall, you make the effort to rake deeply. Dead blades of grass are just waiting to become thatch!
- But there’s often another good reason for a spring raking. As you survey your lawn in spring, see if there are any matted patches, in which the grass blades are all stuck together. This can be caused by a disease known as “snow mold.” New grass may have difficulty penetrating these matted patches. But a light raking will be sufficient to solve this problem.
When you should perform any of these spring lawn care tasks will depend upon the climate of your own region. But Mother Nature provides palpable cues in some cases. For instance, when you’re pretty sure the snow season (if you have one) is over in your region, begin raking.
Check for Compaction
- If your lawn is subjected to high levels of traffic year after year, it may eventually start to show signs of decline. In such cases, your lawn is probably suffering from compaction. For instance, the presence of moss plants signals compaction (among other things).
- Lawn aeration is the remedy for compaction. The good news is that lawn aerators can be rented at your local rental center. The bad news is that the experts recommend postponing lawn aeration until fall. But if, during your “spring lawn checkup,” you become aware of compaction, at least you can plan on setting aside some time in the fall to take care of it.
- Besides compaction, the presence of moss plants also signals acidity. But grass likes a neutral soil pH. You can solve this problem by liming your soil. But don’t expect a quick fix: the effects of liming are slow to take place.
- But if your lawn has been doing fine and shows no signs of suffering from acidity, don’t apply lime. Liming is only a corrective measure, not a preventive measure. A soil that is too alkaline will also cause your lawn problems, so too much lime is as bad as not enough.
- Is your lawn riddled with bare patches due to dog spots, heavy traffic or neglect? If so, you may need to apply grass seed to fill in those bare patches. This solution is known as “over-seeding lawns.” Apply a slow-release nitrogen fertilizer when you over-seed. Five weeks after the grass germinates, apply a quick-release nitrogen fertilizer.
- However, spring isn’t the very best time for over-seeding lawns. Fall is the preferred time, when the new grass won’t have to compete with crabgrass, which is killed off by autumn frosts. So postpone over-seeding until fall, unless your situation calls for it.
- Lawns can be fertilized organically by using compost and mulching mowers. If you prefer chemical fertilizers, Scotts provides a good user friendly lawn fertilizing schedule. Check your townships or city ordinances for what is currently acceptable in your area.
- Many experts, however, recommend a lighter feeding in spring and a heavier one in late fall for cool-season grasses. Too much fertilizer in spring can lead to disease and weed problems. And if you have, indeed, already fertilized in late fall, your lawn is still “digesting” that fertilizer in spring.
In addition to the above tasks of spring lawn care, don’t forget weed control and making sure your mower is ready for the mowing season.
Come back tomorrow for More Spring Grass Tips. If you are on the search for more gardening tips and lawn care help, make sure to come back to MommyMatter regularly. We are always bringing you the latest tips and tricks to make your outdoor oasis an easy adventure for all!