In most parts of the country, lawn grass goes dormant in the winter. However, lawn care doesn’t quite end in the winter. Try these tricks to keep your yard healthy. In the Fall there are some things you should try to take care of now. These are a few mistakes you need to avoid if you would like to enjoy a beautiful lawn in the spring.
Waiting to Fertilize
We know you spent lots of time this summer tending to your lawn. Maybe you have been looking forward to a winter reprieve. But before you take that winter reprieve… fertilize your lawn. Apply fall lawn fertilizer 2 to 3 weeks before the ground freezes. To find an exact date, look for the first frost date in your area. That date is typically a good time to fertilize since the ground hasn’t frozen yet. More generally, mid- late October is a good time to apply lawn fertilizer. Give your lawn root system some nutrition before the harsh weather.
Leaving Messes for Spring Cleanup
One of the easiest ways to care for your lawn this winter is to clear off anything that could damage the grass underneath. Damaging items include any outdoor furniture or semi-permanent structures that you won’t be using in the winter. Clear away children’s’ toys as well as any tools that you have been using around the yard. Anything that is allowed to sit on the grass all winter long can create a dead spot and will need to be attended too once spring arrives.
Not Mulching the Leaves
You have probably already raked or mulched the leaves in your yard from the Fall, but there are bound to be a few last leaves that will sit on your lawn all winter. Make sure to clear away these leaves by mulching them into the yard for extra nutrients. You can go over them during your last mow or consider renting a leaf mulched if there are many leaves still left in your yard. Mulching the leaves helps to return their nitrogen into the soil creating a more stable soil condition for further growth. A layer of leaves keeps your lawn in the dark, setting you up for a patchy lawn in the spring.
Walking on the Lawn in the Snow
Yep, walking on it could be hurting your grass. Here’s the thing: Whether we’re walking around the side of the house to the shed, out back to the garage, or to some other frequented destination, most of us walk the same path until we’ve packed down that snow. Dogs can be a problem also… they don’t like to get their paws cold, so once they’ve worn down a path through the yard, you can bet they’ll stick to it when they go outside to do their business. Snow days are a kids favorite days. Let them go out and make snowmen and igloos and snowball fights and even go sledding but encourage them to run all over the yard do not stay in one spot. The problem? Walking that same path over and over throughout the winter can really take a toll on your lawn. Come spring, you’ll notice that it’s the last area to green up, and might even struggle to thrive all season. Walking on snow-covered grass causes compaction, which can damage the tops of the grass plants or create conditions for snow mold, a fungal disease, to develop. The same is true for grass with a layer of frost on it. Unlike in the warm months, when grass is elastic, trekking across frost-covered grass will break the plants and slow their recovery in the spring.
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Davis Landscape Design & Installation has been providing landscaping services to customers in Northern Kentucky and Greater Cincinnati since 1965! We know that the landscape design process can be overwhelming, so we work with you tirelessly to better understand your vision. At Davis Landscape Design & Installation, we’re on your team and we know how to listen and deliver.