Keep Your Lawn Looking Lush And Green All Summer
As spring turns to summer, it is important that the easy time we had establishing a lush, green lawn has passed. Summer is a very stressful time for lawns. There is less water available, fungus issues are on the rise, and grubs are closer to the surface feeding on roots. Fortunately, there are some things we can do to keep our lawns looking great right into fall.
The most obvious action is to make sure your lawn is getting adequate water. Turf grass requires about one inch or water per week. It is our advice to not count on Mother Nature to provide it and leave room in your schedule to make sure it happens. Deep waterings are the best which also means they can be done less frequently. The goal is to encourage roots to grow deep which helps them better fend for themselves.
The timing of watering is also important. Early mornings are best. This wat the leaf blades dr completely before nightfall, which reduces the chance of fungal issues. The water will also evaporate less than if it was applied midday.
Turf grass requires a pH (the measure of how acidic the something is) generally between 5.5 and 6.5. Anything outside of the range means that the grass plant cannot fully take advantage of available nutrients, no matter how much fertilizer is applied. Perform a soil test to find out what your pH currently is and how much lime will be needed to adjust it into the desired range. Simple soil test can usually be purchased at your local garden center. Soil samples can also be sent to most state extension offices for analysis.
If you do happen to have weeds, they should be removed or killed quickly to prevent them from spreading. Weeds are extremely successful at making sure their species can increase. If there are only a few, consider hand pulling them making sure to get the roots. If there are more, killing them may be the best option. There are several non-pesticide options now on the market. Always read the label completely no matter what kind of weed killer you select.
Raise Mower Height
Studies have proven that by mowing at a height of 3.5”-4” is hugely beneficial to lawns. At this height, the grass plants can take up enough space to literally help squeeze out weeds, the roots are better shaded and protected, and less of the grass blade is cut off with each regular mowing.
Remember to keep mower blades sharp and never remove more than 1/3 of the leaf blade with each mowing.
During the summer, grubs come up close to the surface to feed on roots. Large brown areas, loose sod and birds congregating and searching for grubs in the grass are all signs that there is a grub problem present. Some organic solutions include applying milky spore, which is a bacterium that kills grubs, and neam oil, have both proven effective. Of course, there are several pesticides to consider as well.
High Traffic Areas
Whereas in the spring or fall turf can recover fairly easy from foot and mechanical traffic, not so in the summer. The conditions are just too stressful on the grass plants. Consider alternating path you take through your lawn to create less concentrated damage. If damage does occur, water the areas a little more to help them recover.
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