Having a beautiful lawn is something every homeowner strives for. But did you know, it’s what you do when the leaves start to fall that makes all the difference between having a lawn you can be proud of, or having to press the reset button in the spring.
Fall lawn maintenance is critical to strengthening and repairing your lawn from the wear and tear of the summer. It’s important to go into winter with a strong and healthy lawn, because it’s the ONLY way you’ll come out of it with one. Showing your property some love now will set you up for your best lawn next spring.
Here’s how you can achieve next summer’s lawn goals, starting now, with these 5-key fall lawn maintenance tips!
- Keep mowing: Follow normal mowing guidelines throughout the fall. As the season draws to a close, drop mower blades to its lowest setting (without removing more than 1/3 of the leaf) to allow more sunlight to reach the crown of the plant.
- Aerate your soil: Fall is the best time to aerate your lawn, It will let oxygen, water and fertilizer reach the grass roots more easily, promoting a healthier lawn.
- Rake your leaves: Removing fallen leaves as soon as possible, before they become wet from rain and morning dew, makes the not-so-fun task slightly more bearable. Leaves left on your lawn can suffocate the grass and breed fungal diseases.
- Fertilize to winterize: Prepare your lawn to withstand the cold stress of winter and replenish essential nutrients to the soil. Fall fertilizer delivers the nutrients needed to prevent plant stress and kick start growth in the spring. Look for a fall fertilizer high in potassium and with a low nitrogen content. Potassium helps to reduce the risk of winter damage and improves plant recovery from cold weather stress.
- Patch and repair: Fall is the best time to overseed your lawn and to patch and repair thin areas. Cool temperatures are conducive to germination as it allows for good moisture with less water loss due to evaporation. Overseeding NOW is a smart investment for your property and your best bet to reinforce your lawn for lasting results.
Time spent caring for your lawn now will have you spending more time enjoying your lawn sooner this coming spring and summer and less time repairing it.
Contributed by: Brent Szotak of OCI Landscaping and Irrigation.