A well cared for lawn will look great all year round. The vibrant green colour of short grass provides the perfect backdrop to colourful borders and pathways. Lawns can be the perfect location for a summer get together, a family picnic, or a lazy evening outdoors. Paired with some well positioned garden furniture, a good lawn will add a whole new dimension to any home. Just like vegetable or flower gardens, lawns need regular maintenance to remain healthy looking.
Lawn Maintenance Lawn care is not a complicated process, there are a few things needed to promote vibrant, green growth. Maintaining a regular mowing schedule will enable healthier growth, letting it go a little long every so often is ok too, we all forget sometimes. Lawns need to be mowed about every week in the summer and half as much in the Spring and Autumn. Less often in the winter depending on the temperatures.
Lawn Feed Even the grass on your lawn needs to be fed. There are plenty of natural lawn feeds available that are made from all natural ingredients and is safe to use around children, pets, and wildlife. Lawn feed will add nutrients to the soil and nourish the grass from root to tip giving you a stronger, thicker and more vibrant looking lawn. Apply just before it rains to wash the feed into the lawn, if no rain is forecast then just water the area after application. There are plenty of varieties of lawn feeds and fertilisers available, and some of them even contain grass seed to fill in any gaps as you go.
Lawn Weed Control Remove weeds as soon as the appear, or are noticed. Weeds will end up competing with grass for nutrients, sun and water. The manual approach to lawn weeding is always best; doing it by hand or with a weeder. If you find that weed control products are needed then try to stay natural and avoid chemicals. Removing cut grass and leaves as soon as possible will prevent them from smothering the lawn. Bare patches are an annoying reality with every lawn, it's best to put down some grass seed as early as possible to get it growing green again. A bare patch could be caused by any number of factors including a lack of aeration or an area damaged by foot traffic or animals.
Aeration If there is insufficient aeration in the soil, it will get compacted and will hinder the establishment and growth of the grasses root system. Aeration just means adding air to the soil to better allow water and nutrients to reach the roots. Spotty growth is the first sign that grass is being choked and if left untreated it will lead to muddy patches. Any gardening fork is all that is needed to fix this but there are plenty of lawn aerators also available for the task. Push the fork into the lawn about one third the way down the tines and rock back and forth, repeat the action at small intervals. This may only need to be done once or twice a year depending on the severity of the problem.
Watering We live in a climate with ample rainfall for thirsty lawns, in the event of an extended hot or dry stretch in the summer the lawn will need to be watered. A good sprinkler will always do the trick, but even better is to use captured rainwater from a water butt or barrel. Lawns, like plants, prefer rain water to the treated alternative that is plumbed in to our homes. You can generally tell when a lawn will require water but when the blades of grass begin to look a bit yellow in places it is definitely time.