Lawn Care Tips

The more you let nature do the work for you, the easier it will be to care for your lawn. These tips could help you improve your relationship with your lawn:

  • Don't over water. Make the lawn seek its own source of water, building longer, sturdier roots. Cut back on water especially in midsummer to let the lawn go dormant, strengthening it for fall and winter.
  • Excess water leaches away nutrients and encourages insects. Deep waterings at irregular intervals are better for the lawn than frequent light waterings.
  • Let some weeds grow in that expanse of green. A slightly wild lawn lets volunteer grasses, wildflowers, herbs, and even wild strawberries grow, adding color and variety to your landscape.   Embrace your weeds for what they offer: Clover grows low to the ground and smells lovely after it's been cut, and it often stays green after the rest of lawn has turned brown; dandelion greens taste great in a salad.
  • The higher grass grows, the slower it grows. Adjust your mower blades to cut grass at two to three inches instead of 1-1/2 inches to save time, money, and water. Turf clipped at heights greater than two inches develops the largest, most extensive root system.
  • Leave clippings on the lawn to filter down to the soil, decompose, and recycle nutrients back to the roots. Look into the new "mulching mowers" that recycle clippings back onto the lawn.
  • If you're seeding or reseeding, use a mix of seed that includes slow-growing or low-growing grasses, like fine-leaf fescues that also have low water and fertility requirements. Combine the fescues with a low-maintenance Kentucky bluegrass like 'Park', 'Kenblue', or 'South Dakota Common'.
  • Moss and sorrel in lawns usually means poor soil, poor aeration or drainage, or excessive acidity.
  • During a drought, let the grass grow longer between mowings, and reduce fertilizer.
  • Water your lawn early in the morning or in the early evening.
  • The best time to apply fertilizer is just before it rains.
  • In areas of your lawn where tree roots compete with the grass, apply some extra fertilizer to benefit both.