Lawn Care and Fertilizer Treatments
Survey your lawn. Make note of the areas that are growing well and where your lawn needs help due to thin spots or weeds. Decide on the goals for your lawn. Picture perfect green lawns require intensive maintenance and expense; families with children and pets may be satisfied with a more natural, lower maintenance lawn.
Get a soil sample kit from your local extension office. After filling a small box with soil and sending it in, you will receive a detailed written analysis and recommendations specific to your climate and yard. The results will enable you to choose the best lawn fertilizer with confidence.
Determine your lawn-fertilizing schedule based on your goals. Fertilize a higher maintenance lawn 4 to 5 times a year and a lower maintenance lawn in the spring and fall. Keep in mind additional fertilizer stimulates growth and requires more frequent mowing.
Apply liquid based weed control with a hand sprayer. Spot treating individual weeds reduces runoff of environmentally damaging chemicals, avoids unnecessary treatments, and saves you money.
Dethatch and aerate your lawn on a yearly basis. The best defense against weeds is a thick healthy lawn; crowd out weeds by adding grass seed to thin areas. Choose a grass variety targeted for the amount of traffic, your climate, and quality of sun or shade. Most lawns require different types of seed in different sections of the yard.
Manage grubs before they get out of control. Nematodes are a natural treatment, but application times are sensitive to temperature and moisture. Chemical treatments are effective, but proceed with caution if you have pets or children.
Control snow mold and fungus diseases by choosing slow release fertilizers. Allow the lawn to go dormant naturally, avoiding lush growth late in the fall. Rake leaves to prevent smothering the grass. Delay raking in the spring to avoid transferring fungus to new areas. Snow mold is often a temporary problem and your lawn will recover with proper summer maintenance.
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